Blue Noon (Midnighters Series #3)
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Blue Noon (Midnighters Series #3)

4.2 158
by Scott Westerfeld

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The five teenage Midnighters of Bixby, Oklahoma, thought they understood the secret midnight hour—until one morning when time freezes in the middle of the day.

The noise of school stops. Cheerleaders are frozen in midair. Everything is the haunted blue color of the midnight hour.

As the Midnighters scramble for answers, they discover that the

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The five teenage Midnighters of Bixby, Oklahoma, thought they understood the secret midnight hour—until one morning when time freezes in the middle of the day.

The noise of school stops. Cheerleaders are frozen in midair. Everything is the haunted blue color of the midnight hour.

As the Midnighters scramble for answers, they discover that the walls between the secret hour and real time are crumbling. Soon the dark creatures will break through to feed at last . . . unless these five teenagers can find a way to stop them.

Editorial Reviews

AGERANGE: Ages 12 to 18.

To quote the review of the hardcover in KLIATT, March 2006: The third book in this series brings the nightmares of the midnight hour out in the middle of the day as the boundaries between the secret hour and real time begin to rip, forcing the midnighters into action to save Bixby and the innocent people who are about to be swallowed into the blue time. Rex, now a halfling, struggles to control the darkling side of him, a predator waiting to break free. Dess’s mathematical calculations indicate November 1st as the day the rip will begin to spread, allowing the hungry ancient ones to feast on every human in the rip’s wake. Together with Melissa, the light bringer, and Jonathan, who has perfected his flying techniques, the new generation of midnighters must hatch a plan to save Bixby and most likely the rest of the world. However, there is another force working against them that straddles both sides of the midnight hour. Kidnapping, high-speed chases, and the secrets of the past whirl around each other. Westerfeld has once again crafted a plot that keeps readers on the edges of their seats, not knowing what might be around the next corner. Reviewer: Michele Winship
March 2008 (Vol. 42, No.2)

Children's Literature
Not having read the first two volumes within this series made it somewhat difficult for me to follow the story. References were made to actions, events, and personality characteristics that were obviously developed in other books, necessitating a high level of inference and conjecture. Especially difficult were the references to characteristics that were not clear or evident from the actions of characters in this particular volume. Westerfeld weaves his tale of a separate time when only a chosen few are conscious, a time when the Midnighters are alive, and everyone else remains in a state of unconsciousness. He outlines the cosmic rift, which causes the special time to expand and erupt at unexpected moments. The Midnighters must fight paranormal forces and unknown entities, as well as their own insecurities, to shift the world back to some semblance of normalcy. Fast paced and full of suspense, this third book in the series would be best read in conjunction with the rest of the "Midnighters" series. 2005, Eos/HarperCollins, and Ages 12 to 18.
—Wendy M. Smith-D'Arezzo
This novel continues the Midnighters series, set in Bixby, Oklahoma, where five teenagers were born exactly at midnight and are the only ones who have the ability to see dark creatures from another world who try to feed on humans. The monsters had been able to travel through the barrier between the known world and theirs only at midnight, during the secret hour when time freezes for everyone but the teens and the nasties. The situation has changed in this series entry: The blue time comes in the middle of the day, and the teens are hard-pressed by this new development. Young adults are drawn to this series on many different levels. Westerfeld does a good job crafting fast-paced suspense novels with hardly any deadwood in the text. Also the books depict teens who have special abilities, which appeals to readers who typically want to be set apart from the crowd. Although they are different because of their unique powers, the characters in the novels have to deal with issues such as bullying, which many readers must come to grips with on a daily basis. Although it helps to have read the other books in the series, this title can stand on its own and is recommended for all library collections. VOYA CODES: 4Q 5P J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Every YA (who reads) was dying to read it yesterday; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, HarperCollins, 384p., and PLB Ages 12 to 18.
—Sean Michael Fleming
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-There is something evil brewing in Bixby, and the teens from the previous "Midnighters" titles must save the world from the darklings. The monsters have found a way to expand midnight so that all humans will enter the blue time and become prey. Complicating the crisis is Rex's residual darkling characteristics that leave him with the unsettling notion that other humans are food, Jonathan's secret desire that the midnight hour could last forever so that he would always be free of the confining "flatland" gravity, and the fact that no one has yet figured out why the darklings wish to dispose of Jessica Day. Blue Noon has an "end of the world" premise that will appeal to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" fans. Even though the characters are not completely developed, they all have distinct skills that set them apart from one another. Westerfeld doesn't rehash all the events of the earlier books. Instead, he subtly includes the information that is needed to follow the story. Since the characters' schemes never proceed according to plan, the plot maintains an exciting pace. However, it is never fully explained why everything works out the way it does. Despite this minor flaw, this is fun recreational reading.-Heather M. Campbell, Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Midnighter Jessica and her friends can't prevent the world from changing forever in this thrilling conclusion to the trilogy. In Bixby, Okla., those lucky enough to be born at midnight have access to the blue time, that secret hour between 11:59 and midnight in which most of the world is frozen. But lately, the blue time has been occurring without warning during the day. Worse, the frozen hour is fracturing, and normal humans will soon be in danger from the darkling monsters that roam at midnight. The midnighters' friendship might be splintering, as well: Melissa's new abilities frighten her friends; Jonathan thinks the coming apocalypse might be worthwhile if he can use his midnighter powers more; and Rex, now half-darkling, hankers after human flesh. Dess, meanwhile, realizes the algebra of midnight is more complex than even her polymath powers can easily comprehend. Even if they prevent the destruction of humanity, life-and the midnighters themselves-will be forever changed. A powerful climax smoothly ties together the complexities of this original and well-drawn world. (Fantasy. 13-15)

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Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Midnighters Series, #3
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range:
13 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Midnighters #3: Blue Noon

Chapter One

8:20 A.M.


Bixby High's late bell shrieked in the distance, like something wounded and ready to be cut from the herd.

Rex Greene was always late these days, stumbling in confusion from one class to another, late with his father's pills or forgetting them altogether. But the worst was getting up for school. It didn't help that he'd unplugged his clock a few nights ago, unable to sleep with the soft buzzing sound it made all night, like a mosquito hovering just out of arm's reach. His newly acute hearing had turned every electronic contraption into something whiny and annoying.

But it was more than just the clock's noise; it was what it meant, with its false day of twenty-four hours. Since what had happened to him in the desert, Rex had started to feel time as something marked out in the sky-the rise and fall of the sun, the spinning stars, the interlocking ratios of the light moon and the dark.

The rest of the world still had their clocks, though, so Melissa had banged on his window again this morning, dragging him rudely out of his strange new dreams.

"Smells like . . . assembly," she said as they pulled into the school parking lot, her head tipping back a bit, nostrils flaring.

All Rex could smell was crumbling vinyl-the upholstery of Melissa's crappy Ford broken down by thirty-odd Oklahoma summers-and gasoline fumes leaking up through the floorboard from the car's rumbling engine. Humans loved their oil, a flash of darkling memory informed him. They scoured the desert for it, used it to make clever things like plastic and gasoline.. . .

Rex shook his head to clear it. On mornings like these, when he'd dreamed of Stone Age hunts all night, he had more trouble concentrating than usual. The old knowledge inside him seemed more real than his sixteen years of human memories. Sometimes Rex wondered if he would ever recover from what the darklings had done, the half change they'd effected before Jessica had rescued him.

Was he gradually healing from the experience? Or was the darkness they'd left inside him like a virus, slowly growing stronger?

As Melissa maneuvered the Ford into a parking place, Rex spotted a few stragglers making their way into the gymnasium entrance. The sound of an amplified voice echoed out from the propped-open double doors.

"Crap, that's right," Melissa said, gripping the steering wheel tighter. "Pep rally today."

Rex groaned and closed his eyes. He hadn't faced anything like this since the change, and he wasn't looking forward to it. The thought of all those bodies pressed in close around him, chanting together, brought a trickle of nerves into his stomach.

"Don't worry," Melissa said, reaching across to take his hand. "I'll be there."

At her touch, with no more insistence than a cool breeze, a calmness fell across Rex. His stomach stopped roiling, his mind growing still as Melissa's serenity poured into him.

A shudder passed through Rex; her strength became his.

Funny. A month ago it had been Rex who'd had to talk Melissa through the beginning-of-football-season pep rally. Now she was the sane one, and he was . . .

What, exactly?

He didn't know yet, and Rex hated not knowing. There were no halflings in the lore, much less recovering halflings.

Bad dreams last night?

Rex smiled and turned to face Melissa. The words had come through as clear as speech. They could have whole conversations now without her uttering a sound.

Her control was almost perfect, not a leaked thought anywhere, so different from the vomited rush of fear and pain that had struck him when they had first begun to touch each other. Although sometimes Rex missed those early experiments, the terrifying moments when he saw all of Melissa at once.

When his mind was focused, he hardly had to speak himself; Melissa simply pulled the words from him. But this morning he was too much of a wreck.

"Yeah, some bad dreams," Rex said aloud. "But not all of them."

The hunting dreams had been sweet-the cold, patient hunger as he tracked prey for days across the plain, anticipation building as the weakest were cut from the group, and then the burning rush of the kill.

But of course, there'd been those other dreams as well, memories of when the clever little monkeys had started hunting back. The beginning of the end.

"Jeez, lighten up," Melissa said, pulling her hand away and rubbing it, as if to wring out the ancient horror she'd felt in his mind. "I think someone forgot to drink his coffee this morning."

"Sorry, Cowgirl. Yeah, I guess I could use a cup. Or six." Rex shook his head again. His brain felt stuffed full, his own thoughts almost crowded out by the memories that the darklings had implanted to make him one of them. "Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever get back to normal."

Melissa snorted. "When were you ever normal, Rex? When were any of us?"

"Well, maybe not normal," Rex admitted. "But I'd settle for human."

She laughed and touched his shoulder, and he felt a spark of her pleasure even through the fabric of his long black coat. "You're totally human, Rex. Trust me on that one."

"Glad you think so," he said, smiling.

Melissa's fingers stayed on his shoulder, drumming out a nervous rhythm, and her glance strayed to the open gymnasium door. Rex realized that however much her control had improved, the thought of enduring a pep rally still made Melissa anxious.

"You'll be okay," he said softly, pulling her closer.

She turned to him, and their lips met.

At first Rex felt serenity in the warmth of their kiss, her new calmness and self-control flowing into him. But then Melissa allowed her composure to slip, and it was like their first time. Everything inside her crashed out in a torrent: the enduring . . .

Midnighters #3: Blue Noon. Copyright (c) by Scott Westerfeld . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Meet the Author

Scott Westerfeld is the author of ten books for young adults, including Peeps, The Last Days, and the Midnighters trilogy. He was born in Texas in 1963, is married to the Hugo-nominated writer Justine Larbalestier, and splits his time between New York and Sydney. His latest book is Extras, the fourth in the bestselling Uglies series.

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