"The sun does not go down.
This is the first thing that Eric Seven notices about Blessed Island. There will be many other strange things that he will notice, before forgetting takes hold of him, but that will come later."
When Eric arrives on Blessed Island he finds himself a changed man. Usually a lonely workaholic, he seems to turn into a laid back guy, craving the company of the very pretty young lady Merle, who lives on the island.
Eric realises something is wrong however and cant get it out of his mind that he's been on the island before, and he knows Merle from somewhere else, even though he can remember neither. But what if there's more to Blessed Island, more to Eric and Merle... something that spans the centuries.
Midwinterblood is an amazing tale of seven individual stories that all come together to form a narrative of love and loss. The way the stories come together is incredible and I can assure you that reading it will make you lose hours of your evening!
The way Midwinterblood is told is very unique. The seven stories seem to be separate accounts with small snippets of information that bring them together. I have never read anything like it before but I have to say it worked! I loved the way it was done and it definitely made my brain work to gather all the info together. The themes that run throughout the seven stories are powerful, there's lots of death, gore but also love and that helped make the book what is was for me; brilliant.
The characters were really interesting. I don't wish to give much away but I loved that Eric and Merle were different characters within all the books, but still Eric and Merle... That probably doesnt make much sense to anyone who hasn't read the book but basically, there are characters within every story called some version of Eric and Merle. The souls of these characters are thought to be those of a King and Queen who lived hundreds of years ago (not a spoiler, its on the back of the book!) and this really shines through the book. They are beautiful characters who really are great to follow. I liked that some of the stories weren't told from either Eric or Merle's point of view and they each changed their "voice" The other characters you meet are fantastic too! Tor freaked me out from the start and even those who werent Island natives were fantastically built up characters, like Isabella and Edward from "The Archaeologist" and Laura from "The Unquiet Grave" - easily the scariest story from the book!
I loved the story entitled "The Archaeologist" because it really brings a story that you can sink your teeth into. Its the first one following the "main" story and it really gets your brain whirring. I honestly found it hard to put the book down once I got onto this section of it! I found the writing a little strange to be honest, Marcus Sedgwick has a very unique style of writing and its not like anything I've come across before so at the beginning I found Midwinterblood a little hard to get into but as soon as I got onto that second, of eight, section I was away, any trouble with the writing was over and I flew through it!
I really would recommend this book to any young teen reader. It was suitably scary, but not too much so that its too terrifying to read at night! I think anyone who loves a good mystery needs to read this book and I'm off to see if my library has any more by this author because he's definitely one to read!
Midwinterblood is released in the UK today by new imprint Indigo. Thank you to the publishers for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.
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