Length: 320 pages
Audiobook Length: 12 hours and 30 minutes
First Published: 2021
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Holly Black debuted her first adult fantasy book about a world of shadow magic. For a cost, shadows can be altered for beauty or power, but the secrets of magic are closely guarded. Living on the margins of society, Charlie Hall is a bartender trying to escape her former life as a con artist, a past she desperately wants to hide from her boyfriend, Vince. When a figure from her past returns, Charlie is dragged back into the magical underground market for magic texts in this new modern dark fantasy series.
Book of Night debuts a gritty version of Western Massachusetts, with complicated shadow magic that was often difficult to follow. Although technically an adult fantasy book, Book of Night reads just like a young adult fantasy, with protagonists perfectly posed to develop their own fandom. Yet, I struggled my way through the narrative, confused by the magical world and bored by the lifeless storytelling that plagued the entire novel, but especially the first half.
Holly Black makes her stunning adult debut with Book of Night, a modern dark fantasy of shadowy thieves and secret societies.
Charlie Hall has never found a lock she couldn’t pick, a book she couldn’t steal, or a bad decision she wouldn’t make. She’s spent half her life working for gloamists, magicians who manipulate shadows to peer into locked rooms, strangle people in their beds, or worse. Gloamists guard their secrets greedily, creating an underground economy of grimoires. And to rob their fellow magicians, they need Charlie.
Now, she’s trying to distance herself from past mistakes, but going straight isn’t easy. Bartending at a dive, she’s still entirely too close to the corrupt underbelly of the Berkshires. Not to mention that her sister Posey is desperate for magic, and that her shadowless and possibly soulless boyfriend has been keeping secrets from her. When a terrible figure from her past returns, Charlie descends back into a maelstrom of murder and lies. Determined to survive, she’s up against a cast of doppelgängers, mercurial billionaires, gloamists, and the people she loves best in the world ― all trying to steal a secret that will allow them control of the shadow world and more.
About Holly Black
Holly Black is the author of bestselling fantasy books for children and young adults. Some of her titles include The Spiderwick Chronicles (with Tony DiTerlizzi), The Modern Faerie Tale series, the Curse Workers series, Doll Bones, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, the Magisterium series (with Cassandra Clare), The Folk of the Air series, and The Darkest Part of the Forest. She is also the author of the adult fantasy novel, Book of Night. She currently lives in New England. Visit the author’s website →