I received a review copy from the publisher as part of the blog tour in exchange for an honest review. It has not affected my opinions.
Genre: Fantasy Age Range: Adult Star Rating: 4 stars Series: standalone
Christophor Morden lives in a world where everybody changes with the rising and setting of the sun. For every person contains two distinct identities – a day brother and a night brother. One never sees the light, the other nothing of night.
One evening Christophor, one of the king’s special unit of witch hunters, is woken early by a call to the city prison. A young woman has torn her own eyes out, and the police suspect supernatural causes. The investigation takes Christophor far from home, to a village on the edge of the kingdom.
There he will find his witch – and his night brother will find himself desperate to save her. And as this battle of the self rages, the witch’s ancient and apocalyptic ritual comes ever closer to completion…
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
The premise/world of this book is incredible – there are two people in each body, one awake in the day and one at night. It creates so many fun opportunities for a different culture. What does it mean for relationships and family units if the day-sibling doesn’t like the night-sibling’s partner’s other version? What does it mean infrastructure wise if you have a population only active at night?
I was really interested in the fact that the characters can see/remember bits of their counterpart’s life, react to it emotionally. It’s not clear as crystal but it’s still part of their vague awareness. It also let the book follow the story from both perspectives, but heavily coloured by the current narrator’s view.
The first half of the book is told from Chistophor’s perspective, with small insights into Alexsander’s days. Chistophor is by far the larger character in this section, with only fleeting sections from Alexsander. When the book switches narrator at the halfway point, we get a lot more of Alexsander seeing what happens to Chistophor than we did the other way around. Which makes sense; the investigation is still ongoing (heading toward the climax) and we really need to keep seeing that, even as Alexsander tries to be more involved.
The investigation itself is very much about the occult from the start. The boy who plucks out his own eyes because there are TEETH growing behind them and it’s so uncomfortable he will do anything to be rid of the pain? That was so unnerving, really really creeped me out. It does do well to set the entire tone of the book, though, and prepare you for the ending, which is full of creepy ritual.
The investigation itself is interesting because of the fact that there are day and night versions of people. Trying to get information from both from someone else’s vague impressions of the vague impressions the suspect’s counterparts have definitely gives a unique spin on this book. Not to mention not knowing if both versions of someone is in on it or not, and yet only having access to one.
I reached the end and wished there was more, so fingers crossed for another entry in this world. Doesn’t have to be the same characters – I really want to explore the cool premise further!