Jeffrey Overstreet’s Cyndere's Midnight has many of the same positives as Auralia's Colors. Specifically,
Writing Style. Overstreet still bothers to produce literate prose that feels like poetry, so the book can function as a modern chrestomathy for those wanting to improve their style.
Flow. This is actually better than in Auralia's Colors, which seemed to wander a bit. Although there are numerous viewpoint characters, the overall focus is strong. Part of the difference is that Jordam is simply a more compelling character than Auralia was. (Yes, Cyndere is okay as well, but this is really Jordam's book, regardless of the title.)
(I should probably mention that I had some misgivings over trying CM, and it took me almost a hundred pages to really get into it as a result. I think I would ordinarily have gotten into it a little sooner.)
Realistic Characterization. Cal-raven, Abascar's king, is still a bit headstrong, and though generally virtuous, he does react reflexively and prejudicially when he ought to shut up and listen. And Jordam, being in effect a drug addict--the beastmen are produced and sustained by the mutagenic "Essence"--struggles with his need for a fix.
Messages. Though most of these have been done before, they're still worthwhile: Drugs can warp you; tinkering with God's design as an "improvement" is a bad idea; following your dreams can lead you to run over other people, and so on.
Tomorrow I'll present some weak points in the story and try to produce a strong conclusion.
Meanwhile, check out the other CSFF bloggers:
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1 year ago