By Author / Illustrator
Hot Key Books
Paperback / softback
In a city that sleeps, the darkness is gathering... For Londoner Fern King, Annwn is her second home - the dream mirror of London, the city she loves. An astonishing world, a world where Dreamers walk in their slumber, their dreams playing out all around them. And Fern, along with her twin brother Ollie, is now a Knight, a trusted guardian and protector of those Dreamers - and every night is spent in Annwn, fulfilling that previously only-imagined destiny to guard those who sleep.
But Annwn, this dark and golden city, is a fragile place. There are those who seek to control and to ruin it - mistrust and secrets are rife, and as the delicate symbiotic balance between Annwn and our own world begins to topple, rips begin to appear between the fabric of the worlds. And Fern and Ollie will have to do all in their power to protect this place that has become so precious to them...
A Gathering Midnight is the sequel to Midnight's Twins and what a great action-packed second book it is. I really could not put this down; adventure, action, mystery right from the first page...
Fern King and her twin brother Ollie spend their nights in an alternative world, a dream world. This world is called Annwn, which is a mirror image of London. In Annwn, Fern is a Knight, a very special one. Her body contains 'immral', a special, magical power that helps her kill demon-like creatures and protect dreamers in this alternative world; this magical force is further developed when she is with her brother, Ollie.
However, Annwn is dying, the beautiful fay creatures of our dreams are disappearing and losing their magic as they are being forgotten. The city is crumbling as a dark force is taking its hold over this world. What will they have to do to protect this place that has become so precious to them?
Medraut wants to control both worlds, London and Annwn, but to do this he needs the legendary sword Excalibur. This sword has been well hidden by Fern and Ollie's mom, Una, with the help of two powerful Fay creatures. (The author has been very clever in wrapping the mystery of King Arthur and Merlin into her story, but not as you would expect!) Who will get Excalibur first, Fern or Medraut? What will happen when either one takes hold of it?
This wildly imaginative adventure will keep any reader of 12+ engaged as it's so full of drama, tension, trust, lies and a dash of romance. A little warning here... the story does contain a fair amount of violence, gore,fear and nightmarish danger that happens while we are dreaming, so it's not a book for sensitive children.
However, it is well written and would be a great addition for book clubs and intervention groups as there are many avenues for discussion. I wished I had the next book in this series at hand as I really want to see what happens next as the ending really leaves the reader wanting more.
416 pages / Ages 12+ / Reviewed by Linda Brown, school librarian
Suggested Reading Age 11+