Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (2011)
Format: Paperback | 416 pages
Format: Paperback | 416 pages
Genre(s): Young Adult, Urban Fantasy
Description (Goodreads): "One night Kylie Galen finds herself at the wrong party, with the wrong people, and it changes her life forever. Her mother ships her off to Shadow Falls—a camp for troubled teens, and within hours of arriving, it becomes painfully clear that her fellow campers aren’t just “troubled.” Here at Shadow Falls, vampires, werewolves, shapshifters, witches and fairies train side by side—learning to harness their powers, control their magic and live in the normal world.Kylie’s never felt normal, but surely she doesn’t belong here with a bunch of paranormal freaks either. Or does she? They insist Kylie is one of them, and that she was brought here for a reason. As if life wasn’t complicated enough, enter Derek and Lucas. Derek’s a half-fae who’s determined to be her boyfriend, and Lucas is a smokin’ hot werewolf with whom Kylie shares a secret past. Both Derek and Lucas couldn’t be more different, but they both have a powerful hold on her heart.
Even though Kylie feels deeply uncertain about everything, one thing is becoming painfully clear—Shadow Falls is exactly where she belongs…"
Warning: Contains SPOILERS!
"Born at Midnight" the first in the "Shadow Falls" series by author C.C. Hunter tells the story of Kylie Galen, a 16-year-old girl that is going through a rough time in her life: her parents are divorcing, her Grandmother died recently and her boyfriend broke up with her. To top it all, an unthought act of rebellion culminates with a visit to jail and her parents deciding to send her to a camp for troubled teenagers. But what Kylie finds at Shadow Falls camp is that the teens aren't only troubled... they're other. And she might be too.
This book was a quick and easy read, yes, but it was also pretty average as far as YA Urban Fantasy goes. There was nothing really distinctive about "Born at Midnight" and while I read it I was mentally ticking off items on a list: "main character with special powers is clueless about them": check, "two hot guys": check, "typical love triangle": check, "older character who acts like a mentor": check.
It's not that the book was bad, it just wasn't that original.
On the plus side, you have the nice, compelling writing style that will keep you reading even as you feel a sense of "deja-vu". Kylie while stereotypical is, at times, pretty cute and in general, a likable character. I also loved the budding romance between Burnett and Holiday; so much I actually thought the book would be a little more entertaining if their love story could be Kylie's instead.
There was also some humor (loved some of the banter between Miranda and Della) and I really liked the mystery of Kylie's supernatural origins.
But... on the other hand, there were a lot of little flaws. Like the very typical characters: the older, kind mentor (who sometimes acted like a teen too... that was so weird); the bad-boy; the sensitive guy; the two female best friends. Or the simple and straightforward storyline: this book was more focused on Kylie and her problems about her powers and her origins and I can understand that since it's the first book; but I didn't understand the need for the introduction of a secondary "mystery" plot because it was very poorly developed and often almost forgotten.
Also, let's not forget the overdone setting (private school/camp for supernaturals), the shallow characterization of both characters (who were little more than stereotypes, as I mentioned above) and the world itself - Hunter's supernaturals were pretty typical (again) and not particularly interesting. World-building needs some improvement.
And, last but not least there was... the love-triangle. I mean, really? So overdone. And it wasn't even done in an interesting way. You had the good guy that is so perfect it hurts and the "bad boy" type that inspires passion and lust. And it's not over yet, I think.
So, overall, I can't say I'd recommend "Born at Midnight" enthusiastically. Story and setting have been done over and over so the book isn't particularly original. Still the writing style and the need to know more about Kylie's hidden powers will probably keep you reading. Recommended for fans of the "Hex Hall" and the "House of Night" series.