Marie Brennan’s Midnight Never Come probably won’t escape being compared to Elizabeth Bear’s Promethean Age books.
Both books? series? are richly detailed, showing deep research and knowledge of the times and peoples that come through the pages in proficient prose.
Queen Elizabeth’s times were never so real nor so fascinating.
Add pacts with hell, Faerie Queenes, and mortals and faeries both hopping between realms to affect politics in both realms, and you’ve got a winner.
However, and here is where the comparison between the two titles is revealing beyond just the different “taste” of the two authors’ prose, Midnight Never Come never drew me into the characters’ hearts.
Where I felt the pangs of love and thwarted desire and sacrifice in Bear’s characters, the fairy Lune and the mortal courtier Deven, while ripe with the possibility of showing the reader love and loss, never quite come through the pages as real and full-fleshed characters. And so I didn’t feel as bound to their failures and triumphs.
I was a little disappointed at the end.