The Girl at Midnight (The Girl at Midnight, #1) by Melissa Grey
Published by Delacorte Press on April 28th 2015
Magic lives in our darkest corners.
Beneath the streets of New York City live the Avicen, an ancient race of people with feathers for hair and magic running through their veins. Age-old enchantments keep them hidden from humans. All but one. Echo is a runaway pickpocket who survives by selling stolen treasures on the black market, and the Avicen are the only family she’s ever known.
Echo is clever and daring, and at times she can be brash, but above all else she’s fiercely loyal. So when a centuries-old war crests on the borders of her home, she decides it’s time to act.
Legend has it that there is a way to end the conflict once and for all: find the firebird, a mythical entity believed to possess power the likes of which the world has never seen. It will be no easy task, though if life as a thief has taught Echo anything, it’s how to hunt down what she wants…and how to take it.
But some jobs aren’t as straightforward as they seem. And this one might just set the world on fire.
I quickly and easily became invested in The Girl at Midnight. From the moment I met our MC Echo I knew I was going to like her. Echo is sassy and smart. She’s gotten a raw deal in life but still perseveres. Even though Echo often jumps headfirst into bad situations, she always seems to make it through. She’s clever and observant which makes her a very accomplished thief. She steals everything from books to trinkets to magical objects.
Echo’s early childhood is a mystery to us. She was living on her own in a public library when she met Ala, an Avicen. Avicens are a race of human/bird supernatural creatures. The only thing we know about Echo’s parents is that they weren’t “very nice”. Echo is found by Ala in the beginning of The Girl at Midnight. After a few pages of introduction the story shoots 10 years into the future.
10 years later: Echo is a teenager who has an Avicen best friend named Ivy and a newly acquired Avicen boyfriend, Rowan. Besides Ivy, Rowan, Ala, and a couple other Avicens, Echo is rejected by the Avicens. Being the only full human in the nest, Echo has felt out of place among the Avicens. It also doesn’t help that the majority of Avicens gossip, look down at her, and all but say she doesn’t belong.
The Girl at Midnight really gets juicy when Echo finds a hidden message in a music box she stole for Ala. The message contains a riddle that has to do with the legendary Firebird, a creature who is said to wield such immense power, that it could end the war between the Avicen and the Drakharin. The Drakharin is another race of supernatural creatures in this book. Unlike the Avicen, the Drakharin are human/dragon. Echo, by Ala’s request, undertakes the journey to find the Firebird.
I appreciated Echo’s humor throughout The Girl at Midnight. Even in dark moments, like sitting in a Drakharin dungeon, Echo kept her sarcasm.
I didn’t give this book 5 stars because even though it was great, it wasn’t spectacular. There wasn’t really a cliffhanger at the end of The Girl at Midnight, but I liked the ending well enough to want to read the next book.