Hello everyone! Welcome back to my blog! Today I’m going to be reviewing the Midnight Star by Marie Lu. It is the third and final installment in the popular Young Elites series. Warning: spoilers ahead!
As I did with my previous review, I will rank Midnight Star according to three criteria, writing, plot and characters! This will determine the book’s score!
On the writing:
Marie Lu is definitely one of my favourite YA authors. I mean, she killed it with her Legend series and did it again with the Young Elites. I have always adored her writing. Specifically, I love how descriptive her writing is. Midnight Star takes place in it’s own world and she describes this strange world so vividly. She makes me want to visit this renaissance Italy themed world.
Near the end of the book, Adelina and the elites enter this weird ethereal underworld setting. Lu writes this scene so well even though the concept of the underworld is so abstract. Another thing I really admired with MS is her writing the “voices” in Adelina’s head. It’s so cool to be able to do this with a character. As a reader, we’ve gotten to know Adelina’s inner demons and at some parts they are oddly terrifying. And I really, really like it. These italicized “voices” Adelina deals with in the book is such an interesting angle to work with. I was also caught off guard when she finds out the voices in her head are all the people she’s killed in her life. Damn, in this book Lu seriously achieves a new level of dark. This series is not for people who enjoy happy endings and nice juicy romance scenes because this book is none of that. And that’s okay. It’s what makes it so interesting.
On the characters:
The characters in Midnight Star make this book for me. I love Adelina because she’s so dark and evil. She’s not the hero, she’s the villain and she owns it. Instead, Lu creates this amazing anti-villain dynamic that is just so unique. I seriously haven’t come across a series with a main character that is so dark and crazy as Adelina.
It’s also great as reader, to watch Adelina descend into madness. There is huge character development from book one to book three and I didn’t know Adelina would be as evil as she is in the beginning of Midnight Star. Does it make me hate Adelina? Yea a little bit (or maybe the entire time Raffale has been my favourite). But what Lu does with Adelina’s character in the end just blew me to pieces. In the final chapters while she is the underworld, Adelina chooses to trade her life for Violetta’s life. This heartbreaking sacrifice actually brought tears to my eyes. While Adelina did horrible things throughout the Midnight Star, she chooses to leave her mark on the world by leaving behind a thing of light – Violetta.
Violetta is the opposite of Adelina, she’s caring and empathic, and it’s interesting to see their loyalty to each other despite being opposites. Even though Violetta represents goodness, there is still a dark side to her – can you see the theme yet? Other strong characters like Raffale and Magiano really help the book. I think I would go crazy just reading Adelina go crazy. Adding chapters with different characters points of view really makes this book a hit. I want to get in the head of Magiano, Raffale, Violetta, Maeve and Lucent. And I can’t forget about Teren. I think I hate him more than I hate Adelina. So why not all of them? Yea, that’s probably what Marie Lu was thinking too.
On the plot:
The plot of the Midnight Star was well done for the most part. The beginning centers on Adelina conquering surrounding lands and her terrifying rule. Things quickly pick up when Raffale learns the elites powers are slowly destroying their bodies. After realizing, Violetta is dying, Adelina teams up with the other elites for one last adventure. They discover their immortal powers are poisoning the world and in order to fix the planet, they will need to venture to the underworld and give back their powers.
The final scenes are a great closing to Adelina’s story. After giving up her powers to the Gods and returning to the world, she instead trades her life for her dead sister. Violetta is then returned to the world and as a testament to Adelina’s memory, makes a deal with a God to transform her into a constellation. The series ends as the elites give back their powers, healing the world. After the elites learn of Adelina’s passing, they return to their lives. Raffale and Violetta return to rule the kingdom that Adelina left behind, and Maeve and Lucent are later married. In the final chapter Magiano tells Violetta he is going to look for Adelina, as there is a myth that she would return every night. He sets off looking for the midnight star to find her, hence the meaning of book’s title. The plot was conducted pretty flawlessly and there were no boring moments in this book. To be honest, Lu did an amazing job.
All in all, I reward the Midnight Star a 9/10. Most books do not get that high of a ruling but for MS, it is well deserved. Lu created an incredible cast of characters and built a world that intrigued me from the very start. This heartbreaking sacrifice at the end of Midnight Star, reminds me of my own love for my sister.
This book is an absolute must read. It is a great end to this trilogy, and was a satisfying blend of bitter and sweet. While I do mourn Adelina’s death and Magiano’s loss, I think leaving Violetta behind in Adelina’s memory was truly the best ending for the Midnight Star. So yea... bolt over to your nearest bookstore and pick up this book. I literally read it in two days... I just couldn’t put it down!
Well that’s all for the review guys! There’s plenty more to come in the future so stay tuned!
About the Author
Alessia Dickson is the author of The Crystal Chronicles series. She lives in Toronto, Ontario, where she is hard at work on her next book.