I received this ARC from Publisher for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski
on March 3, 2020
Source: ARC from Publisher
Set in the world of the New York Times–bestselling Winner’s Trilogy, Marie Rutkoski's The Midnight Lie is an epic LGBTQ romantic fantasy about learning to free ourselves from the lies others tell us—and the lies we tell ourselves.
Where Nirrim lives, crime abounds, a harsh tribunal rules, and society’s pleasures are reserved for the High Kith. Life in the Ward is grim and punishing. People of her low status are forbidden from sampling sweets or wearing colors. You either follow the rules, or pay a tithe and suffer the consequences.
Nirrim keeps her head down, and a dangerous secret close to her chest.
But then she encounters Sid, a rakish traveler from far away, who whispers rumors that the High Kith possess magic. Sid tempts Nirrim to seek that magic for herself. But to do that, Nirrim must surrender her old life. She must place her trust in this sly stranger who asks, above all, not to be trusted.
It’s no secret that I adore Marie Rutkoski’s books! I really enjoyed The Shadow Society. And The Winner’s Curse? That whole trilogy just blew me away! One of my favorite things about The Winner’s Trilogy was the world building. So, as you can imagine, I was ecstatic to learn we were getting more books set in that world! Of course I jumped at the chance to review The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski.
Oh man. This book. Where to start? First and foremost, I loved knowing that I was back in a world I had come to love, but discovering a totally new part of it. It gave me the same feelings I had reading Six of Crows after the Shadow and Bone books or The Infernal Devices after reading The Mortal Instruments. There’s a sense of familiarity to parts of the story, yet it remains new and fresh. Readers who have never read The Winner’s Trilogy will still find this story accessible. Fans of the previous series will enjoy seeing familiar aspects of those stories in a new way.
There is a magically mysterious aura to this story that I could not get enough of. Like, there’s the story on the surface. It seems clearly defined and straight forward. But there’s something nebulous underneath. Rutkoski’s incredible storytelling sets this up from chapter one. The reader knows there’s more than what meets the eye. As the story progresses, the subtle elements that tell the reader all is not as it seems come to light more and more. This story was so skillfully woven! It reminded me of reading Megan Whalen Turner’s The Thief for the first time. The changes in and revelations by the characters throughout the story kept me captivated and delighted in turn. And learning about the gods! I wish I had a book of those stories alone. I would know all their stories!
I know I’ve compared the reading of this book to other reading experiences I’ve had. But The Midnight Lie is a beautifully crafted story all it’s own. Reading it made me feel as strongly as only all time favorite reading experiences have done previously. It’s one of those books I’ll always wish I could read again for the first time.
“It was the kind of impossible wish you treat as though it is precious. You make a home for it in your heart. You give it the downiest of beds for its rest. You feed it the choicest pieces, even when the meat it eats is your very soul.”
“It is a midnight lie, she said.
A kind of lie told for someone else’s sake, a lie that sits between goodness and wrong, just as midnight is the moment between night and morning.
Or a lie that is not technically false, like a misleading truth.”