The Midnights

The Midnights

by Sarah Nicole Smetana
4.3 6

Hardcover

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Overview

The Midnights by Sarah Nicole Smetana

This voice-driven coming-of-age YA novel is perfect for fans of Katie Cotugno and Playlist for the Dead.

Susannah Hayes has never been in the spotlight, but she dreams of following her father, a former rock star, onto the stage. As senior year begins, she’s more interested in composing impressive chord patterns than college essays, certain that if she writes the perfect song, her father might finally look up from the past long enough to see her. But when he dies unexpectedly, her dreams—and her reality—shatter.

While Susannah struggles with grief, her mother uproots them to a new city. There, Susannah realizes she can reinvent herself however she wants: a confident singer-songwriter, member of a hip band, embraced by an effortlessly cool best friend. But Susannah is not the only one keeping secrets, and soon, harsh revelations threaten to unravel her life once again.

Set against the scintillating landscape of Southern California, The Midnights is an evocative coming-of-age debut about loss, creativity, and finding your voice while you’re still finding yourself.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062644626
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 03/06/2018
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 245,731
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.60(d)
Age Range: 14 Years

About the Author

Sarah Nicole Smetana received her BFA in Creative Writing from Chapman University and her MFA in Fiction from the New School. Originally from Orange, California, she now lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their three-legged cat. Visit her online at www.sarahnicolesmetana.com.

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The Midnights 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous 10 months ago
The Midnights is a beautifully written book that explores the complex nature of friendships and daughter-parent relationships. One cannot help but become emotionally invested in the story as Susannah’s longing for her father’s approval sets her off on a captivating journey of self-exploration. Further, I was drawn into the world from the very first page. The descriptions of the Southern California environment are expertly detailed, and I felt completely transported, as though I was personally experiencing the climate. I would highly recommend reading this novel. I could not put it down.
3725792 11 months ago
The Midnights completely captivated me from start to finish. I was enthralled with Susannah's journey of loss, discovery and self worth. I loved listening to her thoughts. The landscape of Southern CA was so beautifully described that I could taste the Santa Ana winds blowing and feel the heavy, hazy days right after a neighborhood wildfire. I have rarely become so attached to and elated with the words on a page - I did not want to stop reading and at the same time wanted to savor each and every word. Sarah Nicole Smetanas writing left me breathless. I definitely did not want the story to end! I cannot wait for her next novel or better yet, a sequel. 
Lauren817 11 months ago
I've been dying to read The Midnights ever since I saw Rachel Lynn Solomon, author of the AMAZING You'll Miss Me When I'm Gone, raving about it on Goodreads. I figured if she'd loved it I'd probably love it as well, and as it turns out, I was one hundred percent correct (thankfully!). The Midnights is not just good but great. Combing lyrical writing, a drool-worthy setting, and a thoughtful coming-of-age, The Midnights is a standout YA debut, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen's This Lullaby. When the book first begins, Susannah is living a relatively normal life. She works at a coffee shop, has a crush on her guy best friend, and loves the midnight jam sessions her and her father have. Susannah is content with her life. She doesn't feel the need to ask for more, to work for more. She's not worried about college. She's just worried about coming up with the next great lyric. However, everything changes in the blink of an eye. Suddenly, her father- her idol, her rock - is gone, and she's exiled to Orange, CA to live with a grandmother she didn't know she had and a mother she barely recognizes as the days go on. I'll be honest: I didn't love Susannah at first. I didn't like how she treated her mother, or how selfish she could be when it came to putting her needs before others. Suffice to say it took me a long time to warm up to her; however, while I didn't always love her attitude and choices, there was something so incredibly compelling about her voice, something that made me keep reading, no matter the situation. Over time, I began to understand Susannah more. I began to see her passion for music, why she was so willing to put it before everything else. It was her "thing" as well as her tie to her father, and I gave her dedication props. When Susannah moves to Orange, she has the opportunity to reinvent herself. Suddenly, she's in with the cool, elusive kids, the ones who drink, sneak into bars, and have midnight parties at the beach. Susannah slowly transforms, letting herself being influenced by people who shouldn't have say. I found this transformation to be interesting as well as realistic. I think it will resolve with anyone who's ever slowly changed a bits about themselves only to wonder later why they did it. By the end, I was happy I had accompanied Susannah on this journey. I was proud of who she had become and how she had transformed her life. This book won't be for everyone. It's a slow novel, focusing on music, relationships, and grieving more than action and swoon-worthy romance. However, it worked for me, and for those like me who like novels that are character drive, I think it will work well.
Katie Peyton 9 months ago
Smetana tells a searing story of friendship, love, and growing up in the vivid southern California landscape. The setting is so evocatively described you will tell people you live there. You will be fully transported into the world of Susannah Hayes, the mystery of her father's legacy, and the rest of the unforgettable characters you will find there.
AmberK1120 11 months ago
IThank you to Booksparks for providing me with a free copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. really loved reading this book. I was completely in the mood for some YA fiction, and this was a perfect fit. I mean, not only was it set at that slightly awkward, slightly angsty end-of-high-school age, but it was also laced with music. And by “laced” I mean “completely submerged in music”. And I loved it! I’m finding myself wanting to say that this was a really sweet book, despite the fact that it wasn’t a “sweet” story per se. It was, in fact, quite emotional because it dealt with some pretty difficult situations. And yet, I have this warm feeling toward the book now that it’s done. I’m chalking that up to Susannah. I have a soft spot for her. Watching her struggle for her father’s praise, and then her struggle to fit in and find her own way after he was gone broke my heart. And yet I remembered that season as a teen, constantly searching for you’re own identity and your place within the world around you. Ok, I have to stop here or I’m going to start spoiling all the details. And nobody likes a spoilsport! This book will be perfect for fans of YA fiction with a side of romance, and music fans. (I am *still* drooling over her dad’s vinyl collection.) It’s a great coming-of-age story that you’ll probably be able to relate to, and you won’t want it to end.
ahyperboliclife 11 months ago
“You have to shake your notions of good and bad, and create outside of judgement. Follow the instinct, not he convention.” I wanted to love this so much and I just didn’t and that makes me really sad. I was looking for this moving story of grief and family and Susannah finding herself, but this book made me feel absolutely nothing. I didn’t connect to it at all - not the characters, not the relationships, not the plot. Nothing. I can’t remember the last book that I was completely apathetic towards. I found the pacing in the beginning to be really disjointed and rushed. Because of that I never bought any of the relationships. This was really detrimental because Susannah’s relationship with her dad is incredibly important to the story and it’s progression, but I just didn’t care about it. There was also this reflective quality to the writing, that while worked for the story, felt out of place. There was moments when the narration read like a voiceover looking back at what happened, but it was used infrequently and pulled me out of the story. Even the music element, which I usually love in story fell flat here. I didn’t feel Susannah’s connection to the music. I just didn’t feel much of anything. So The Midnights was a super unfortunate miss for me, but I’m sure A LOT of people will really love it and connect with it, so it’s worth a shot if you’re in the mood for a contemporary with a little more depth. Hopefully it will work out for you.