Finished Nightfall by Jake Halpern and Peter Kujawinski.  I received a copy from the publisher for review.

Summary (from Amazon):

“On Marin’s island, sunrise doesn’t come every twenty-four hours—it comes every twenty-eight years. Now the sun is just a sliver of light on the horizon. The weather is turning cold and the shadows are growing long.

Because sunset triggers the tide to roll out hundreds of miles, the islanders are frantically preparing to sail south, where they will wait out the long Night.

Marin and her twin brother, Kana, help their anxious parents ready the house for departure. Locks must be taken off doors. Furniture must be arranged. Tables must be set. The rituals are puzzling—bizarre, even—but none of the adults in town will discuss why it has to be done this way.

Just as the ships are about to sail, a teenage boy goes missing—the twins’ friend Line. Marin and  Kana are the only ones who know the truth about where Line’s gone, and the only way to rescue him is by doing it themselves. But Night is falling. Their island is changing.

And it may already be too late.”

I was so excited to read this book, but unfortunately it fell pretty far short of my expectations.

The concept is excellent: there are weird monsters and these three kids are left alone to deal with whatever might be coming. (And, of course, they don’t know what exactly IS coming; everyone just tells them that things are done because that’s the way things are done.)  Initially, of course, they’re not sure if there even IS any actual danger or if it’s made up by their parents for some strange reason.

I’m not sure why this book didn’t work for me.  Part of it is that I didn’t really connect with the characters (one thing that helps me is if there’s a character that I can either root for or actively root against) and that wasn’t the case with this book.  Everyone was…fine.

There were some neat twists, and the book definitely kept my attention, but this isn’t a book I’m planning to revisit.


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