Review: Midnight Crossroad by Charlaine Harris

midnight crossroad_front mech2.indd“FIRST IN A NEW TRILOGY

From Charlaine Harris, the bestselling author who created Sookie Stackhouse and her world of Bon Temps, Louisiana, comes a darker locale—populated by more strangers than friends. But then, that’s how the locals prefer it…
Welcome to Midnight, Texas, a town with many boarded-up windows and few full-time inhabitants, located at the crossing of Witch Light Road and Davy Road. It’s a pretty standard dried-up western town.
There’s a pawnshop (someone lives in the basement and is seen only at night). There’s a diner (people who are just passing through tend not to linger). And there’s new resident Manfred Bernardo, who thinks he’s found the perfect place to work in private (and who has secrets of his own).
Stop at the one traffic light in town, and everything looks normal. Stay awhile, and learn the truth…” – Goodreads

As a fan of Charlaine Harris’s now-defunct Sookie Stackhouse series, when I saw that she was publishing a new novel I decided to take a gander and see what was going on in the world of Midnight Crossroad, the first in a trilogy of novels set in Midnight, Texas.

Midnight, Texas is what one might call a “one-horse town”. There are very few residents. Manfred Bernardo, twenty-two-year-old revered internet and phone psychic is their newest neighbor. We also have his landlord, Bobo, owner of the town’s pawnshop. Below the pawnshop live two more tenants, Olivia and Lemuel (oh, yes – Lemuel is an energy vampire, BTW). Across the street from Manfred resides Fiji, the friendly local witch. Next door to Fiji is The Rev, who lives at the church and tends to the pet cemetery. Down at the Antique Gallery and Nail Salon are Joe and Chuy, who make a great couple. Over at Home Cookin’, Midnight’s only restaurant, Madonna and baby Grady cook up a storm while daddy Teacher does odd jobs around the town. Over at the Gas-N-Go are the Lovell’s: Shawn, Creek, and Conner, a father, daughter and son who are living under the radar for reasons no one knows. But that’s not unusual here in Midnight – it is a town full of people with secrets and loaded histories.

The main mystery focused on in book one of Harris’s new trilogy is the disappearance of Aubrey, Bobo’s beloved girlfriend. She’s not missing for long, though – Aubrey’s decomposed body soon shows up near the river during the town picnic. Now that she’s been found, the questions is: who did this to her? Bobo claims innocence and the town backs him. It turns out that Aubrey was affiliated with the Men of Liberty, a white supremacist group in nearby Marthasville, and suspicions are turned toward them. Aubrey’s family and the MOL, however, are convinced that Bobo is guilty as sin. The Rev has other suspicions… Who could have murdered Miss Aubrey?

I felt a little bit let down by Midnight Crossroad. I was hoping against hope that it would live up to the fabulousness of Sookie Stackhouse fame, and unfortunately it just wound up falling a bit short of the mark. It was a pleasant read, with a little bit of mystery and action – but nothing to keep me hanging on the edge of my seat. That said, I’m told that Charlaine Harris fans might be a tad more excited about this trilogy than myself as it stars some lesser characters from former novels/series of hers. Apparently this has pumped up the momentum for many!

Did I love Midnight Crossroad? Uhm, no. But I liked it well enough. Will I read the second book in the trilogy when it is published? Actually, I probably will. Harris held my attention just enough to keep me interested in what might come next, and I have a need to see if things get more exciting or not. So I’ll be sticking around Midnight, TX for a while, at least. You should stop by soon, too.

Midnight Crossroad by Charlaine Harris. Buy it, read it, love it.

3 stars

Source: Free Library of Philadelphia Digital Library

 

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