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A Wish After Midnight

A Wish After Midnight

4.0 4
by Zetta Elliott

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Genna is a fifteen-year-old girl who wants out of her tough Brooklyn neighborhood. But she gets more than she bargained for when a wish gone awry transports her back in time. Facing the perilous realities of Civil War–era Brooklyn, Genna must use all her wits to survive. In the tradition of Octavia Butler’s Kindred and Madeleine L’Engle’s A


Genna is a fifteen-year-old girl who wants out of her tough Brooklyn neighborhood. But she gets more than she bargained for when a wish gone awry transports her back in time. Facing the perilous realities of Civil War–era Brooklyn, Genna must use all her wits to survive. In the tradition of Octavia Butler’s Kindred and Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, A Wish After Midnight is the affecting and inspiring tale of a fearless young woman’s fight to hold on to her individuality and her humanity in two different worlds.

Editorial Reviews

Jacqueline Bach
Fifteen-year-old Genna Colon makes a lot of wishes in a fountain at her neighborhood botanical garden—to move to a bigger apartment, to become a psychiatrist, to be with her boyfriend, to understand why her mom hates white people. When one wish sends her back to pre-Civil War Brooklyn, she awakes to find herself badly beaten and arrested as a runaway slave. After recovering, Genna is employed as a nanny by a white doctor with a bad-tempered wife; she befriends their cook, an Irish scullery maid, and the biracial son of a merchant. They all find themselves involved with brutal acts of racism, and Genna begins to learn about history in a personal way. Elliot explores life today and 1863 Brooklyn, depicting inequities found in both periods as a complex series of relationships and actions. Written for eighth grade and higher, a sequel is planned for this charismatic character. Reviewer: Jacqueline Bach
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—A speculative fiction series about a teen of Panamanian descent who time travels to Civil War—era Brooklyn with her love interest Judah. In the sequel, The Door at the Crossroads, the young people are separated and Judah struggles to stay alive during the Civil War while Genna travels to New York City during September 11. Elliott's lyrical writing, thorough research, and excellent pacing make these books a perfect fit for future fans of Octavia Butler and those who enjoyed A Wrinkle in Time.

Product Details

Amazon Childrens Publishing
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
12 - 14 Years

Meet the Author

Zetta Elliott was born and raised outside of Toronto, Canada, but has lived and taught in Brooklyn for over ten years. An educator and a writer, Elliott has published numerous works of poetry, plays, essays, and children’s books, including Bird, her critically acclaimed picture book, which was released in 2008.

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Wish after Midnight 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
All Genna Colon wants is to find a way out of her current life. She doesn't want to win the lotto or meet a vampire. No, all Genna wants is to leave Brooklyn. She can't stand living in a crowded and dark apartment with her druggie brother, overworked mother, estranged sister, and innocent baby brother. Genna wants to go to college, and she is fighting to make that goal come true. To her mother, Genna is the family's only potential for a better life. To her classmates, Genna is an outcast and is known as the teacher's pet. But when Genna meets Judah, another part of her can-be future life is revealed: love. Judah is everything she ever wanted, stable and sweet. Although they don't agree about everything, Genna no longer feels alone. But suddenly everything changes. Reality is no longer true. After falling into a fountain, Genna is transported to the time of the Civil War in pre-Brooklyn. No longer is Genna trying to get out of the city. All she wants now is to find her way back, but along the way Genna must discover what it means to be free and the costs that come with it. A WISH AFTER MIDNIGHT by Zetta Elliott is a breathtaking edition to black history literature for young adults. She not only paints feelings with a translucent narrative, but also gives a clear insight on how one's history still rings out in the present. Readers will thoroughly enjoy reading Genna's tale - and will steadily be awaiting a sequel.
Slessman More than 1 year ago
A WISH AFTER MIDNIGHT Zetta Elliott AmazonEncore ISBN: 978-0-98255-505-7 272 pages $12.95 Reviewer: Annie Slessman Being the first book I had reviewed which was a AmazonEncore publication I was unsure what to expect. Knowing a book is self-published tells me that the author had a strong belief in their talent and the work they have produced. A WISH AFTER MIDNIGHT by Zetta Eliott deserved to be published. The story of a young Africian-American girl stuck in the confines of the "ghetto," Genna Colon believes if she studies hard enough and lives long enough she can obtain her dream of a better life for herself and her family. Her family consists of a mother who works two jobs to feed and keep a roof over her family's head, an older sister, a deadbeat brother and an infant brother. The young infant is the only joy in Genna's life and she takes on his care when she is not in school. She finds the only solace she can find in the ghetto at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden. It is there that she befriends an elderly white man who champions her love of the gardens by buying her a pass where she can visit the Garden whenever she wishes. It was a visit to the Garden that changed her life more drastically than she could have imagined. She tossed a coin into the Garden's fountain 609-+ and woke up to find herself close to death in Brooklyn as it stood in 1863. Taken into a local orphanage, Genna is nursed back to health by the orphanage's director and soon finds a permanent placement as a nanny for the local doctor. There she settles into her new life making new friends with the doctor's cook and housekeeper, a local African-American young man who has a white father and a young Irish woman who scrubs floors to help feed her brothers and sisters. She finds some joy and even some happiness with her new life until she visits a hospital full of war-torn soldiers and discovers that one among them is her former boyfriend, Judah. Finding Judah again is a mixed blessing and which complicates her new life. Will Judah and Genna find happiness with each other? Will Genna ever find her way back to the year 2001 and her family? This work provides the reader with the desire to read until the book reaches its climax. It is a page turner with a surprise ending. If your book buying is limited, then by all means, add this one to your "must have" list.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago