Customer Reviews for

Cyndere's Midnight

Average Rating 4.5
( 23 )
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  • Posted April 21, 2012

    If a reader wonders why the second in the Auralia's Colors serie

    If a reader wonders why the second in the Auralia's Colors series is titled “Cyndere's Midnight,” Overstreet wastes no time answering him. Heiress to the Bel Amican throne, Cyndere, is grieving the loss of her father and brother, thinking she would not throw herself into the sea that day, when she hears of the death of her husband, Deuneroi. In time, she goes to an outpost named Tilianpurth to mourn, but many around her don't know how to help, and being royalty, she will not take difficult counsel easily.

    Elsewhere, a band of four beastmen roam the wilderness, killing children and traders. The beastmen are monsters, men mixed with many other animal forms. They were cursed long ago by wicked strangers with unknown motives. One them, Jordam, has stumbled onto an apparently supernatural dragon called The Keeper, and in a way it has shocked him into new life. Jordam was physically and emotionally broken when he ran from The Keeper. Those wounds and Auralia's artwork began to heal him.

    The hope of redemption is a major theme in this adventure. Cyndere and Deuneroi hope to overcome the curse of the beastmen. The ale boy has earned the name Rescue by the people he has given his life to save. Auralia, though only a background character in this story, continues her influence on many people with her infectious love of life and endurance of her artwork.

    But it isn't as if Auralia is the one light of goodness in a dark world. Overstreet's fantastic setting teems with life as if created by a wild and loving god. Colors found everywhere and the pure water of the deep well depicted on the cover give an enchanted life to those who absorb them. It's part of the magical fiber threaded throughout. It's one of many things I love about this series, which I believe deserves a place on your bookself.

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  • Posted June 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Lovely writing, deep themes.

    Cyndere's Midnight is the second in Overstreet's Auralia Thread. The first is Auralia's Colors. If you haven't read that one, check it out first before reading further in the series. These stories are NOT stand-alone. The story of Cyndere is all at once emotional, dark, lovely, exciting, fast-paced, hilarious, and tender. Can one story really be all those things? Hallelujah, yes it can! I think Overstreet manages to accomplish this (without giving the reader whiplash) by having multiple viewpoint characters, each fully-fleshed out as a human being (or beastman, as the case may be) and with his own agenda, struggles, and emotional journey. The story is fast-paced and exciting while we follow the exploits of a murderous beastman with ambitions for the throne. It's tender and emotional when we get glimpses of a widow's debilitating grief. It's humorous as we climb into the mind of a simple, forgetful beastman, torn between love and fear. It's lovely when we discover an unlikely friendship and sense of understanding between two characters we'd never expect to have a thing in common. Now, what sets this story apart for me is the mastery with which Overstreet is able to weave these separate, yet completely dependent, stories together. The same was true in Auralia's Colors, as we hopped from head to head throughout the story. Finally, at the climax of the novel, you understand why each separate story was being told and how each viewpoint character played a part in the ultimate outcome. Wonderfully done. A second highpoint of Overstreet's writing is his characterization. Each character's voice is unique and distinct. This is important, having so many point-of-view shifts throughout the story. Every character is either likable or understandable, meaning that even if you don't like a character, you understand his motivations and why he behaves the way he does. Overstreet's ability in this area is solid, even masterful in places. The two major criticisms of this series I have read are that it's confusing (these are people trying to start the series in the middle... see my above disclaimer) and that some people don't think the "Christian element" is strong enough to be considered a CBA book (Waterbrook Multnomah is a Christian publisher). This is a valid opinion, but I'd respectfully disagree. Are the allusions in The Auralia Thread thus far subtle? Yes. Is there much direct allegory? No. But I would argue that there is a place for this type of literature in CBA, right alongside Narnia or The Dragon Keeper Chronicles with their more obvious parallels. One of Overstreet's biggest assets as an author is his subtlety. There are whispers of Beauty and the Beast in Cyndere's Midnight, but it's not like reading a fairytale retelling. It's clear that the Bible and Overstreet's Christian faith are strong influences in his work, and that's enough for me. It's fiction, not Bible study. Overall, I'd highly recommend Cyndere's Midnight. But please start with Auralia's Colors first. :)

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    A Story that Matters

    Cyndere's Midnight, the second book of the Auralia's Thread series, was even more captivating than the first. The pacing is outstanding; it keeps the readers on their toes with best of the fantasy genre, and yet never looses sight of the developing characters. These characters themselves are very compelling; the reader will very quickly come to care about each one including not only the sympathetic but also the antipathetic ones. Each is wonderfully drawn, from the nameless Ale Boy, to young king Cal-Raven struggling to keep his unhoused people together, to the grieving heiress of the title, and even (or perhaps especially) the three Beastmen brothers who weave through the story. Though Overstreet carefully avoids allegory or didacticism, there are parallels to our worlds history and politics that the careful reader will appreciate. Most importantly, this is a story where there is something at stake, and so the reader really does care what happens.

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  • Posted February 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Wonder

    just as good as the frist book, has a special way of reaching out and involing you. wonderous story, makes you see some thing new in the things around you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2008

    wonderful fantasy

    To be or not to be is the question that Cyndere asks herself every day at the water¿s edge. The widow grieves the loss of her spouse Deuneroi. He was more than just her husband they shared a common dream of trying to help the Beastmen. She struggles to live another day although she is the House of Bel Amica¿s heiress because she no longer dreams except for leaping off the top of the Stairway Rock. Besides losing her husband, the Beastmen who they wanted to assist killed him in cold blood. --- Jordan the Beastman has heard of the enchantment of Auralia¿s Colors his cursed tribe especially his three blood thirsty brothers think he is crazy as they hear nothing. To his chagrin, Jordan finds himself thinking of shades of consequences that he and his Beastmen do in their black and white berserker rages. When he meets the grieving Cyndere he sees first hand the impact on a person adding to his guilt, she wants to help him rather than he her. Still confused, as his siblings prepare to attack the House of Abascar, he must decide whether to help Cyndere defend the place or join his brothers the former feels foreign but right while the latter feels instinctive but wrong. Either way he chooses to ally himself will impact the kingdoms of The Expanse so that they will never be the same. --- The ¿Blue Strand¿ sequel to ¿The Red Strand¿ thread (of AURALIA'S COLORS) is a wonderful fantasy starring a grieving widow with nothing to live for since her mate and with him their dream, was murdered until she meets Jordan. He gives her a renewal of faith by lifting off the hopelessness that engulfed her she now has a reason to live. In some ways the confused Jordan is the more fascinating character as his world has changed from that of his siblings whereas they think in terms of us and them he understands complex interweaving colors of us, us, and more us. CYNDERE'S MIDNIGHT is an entertaining wonderful fairy tale. --- Harriet Klausner

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    Posted December 28, 2011

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    Posted January 24, 2011

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    Posted December 27, 2010

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    Posted July 4, 2011

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    Posted March 28, 2011

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