The Tiger at Midnigth (The Tiger at Midnight #1) by Swati Teerdhala
ARC received via Edelweiss for a fair review.
Publish date: April 23, 2019
In a country where the land is failing due to a failed magical bond, an assassin kills the general and soldier Kunal must find the culprit. As she is hunted by Kunal, Esha AKA the Viper must uncover who has plotted against her from her rebel group of the Blades. As their chase continues they come to know that they may be the key to fixing the magic that will keep the country from falling into famine.
Oh my gosh, I had to drag myself through this book. The only things that really kept me going was the fact that it was an ARC (though we all know that I am prone to giving up on them if they’re really not my cup of tea) and the fact that I was buddy reading this with Kelly from Another Book in the Wall. The biggest problem I had with this book was how much was repeated to us. Over and over, the decisions and thoughts of the characters had to be reversed and revisited and it made the story drag along unnecessarily. Also the romance was poorly conveyed. Most of the book was told from individual scenarios of their cat and mouse chase and somehow the characters grew fond of each other. There was also this extra wrench of a sort of love triangle thing going on that I find completely unnecessary. The idea of the story was good, but the execution was just lost on me. This book was just a lot of info dumping, bland action scenes and shallow interactions with somewhat forced, awkward conversations.
The World Building
Yikes, the world building was not only somewhat bland, but also confusing. Multiple times I had to stop and wonder who was from which country, and which one was the bad country. I have an idea, but I am not 100% sure I know. Yes there were scenes that were quite vibrant (marketplaces and jungles) but beyond that there world to me was a little lost, and I really, really thought there was a lot of opportunity to fold in some folklore or culture into the story. For the first 60% of the book much to the story focused more on the chase between Esha and Kunal that when the magic was actually brought into the story it was a little jarring as it changed the story drastically.
Esha is the type of girl who is said to be this great assassin that has eluded all in her triumphs….We’re told repeatedly basically how bad ass she is, and how much blood she has on her hands.
Kunal is so boring. He is the good soldier with a conscience that I wish was just a little more brutal. I get it, he wanted to be an artist, but he was raised by a general to be a soldier and has aims to be the next commander. Yet his loins are basically on fire for this a girl he walked to safety, and every time he looks into her piercing eyes he basically loses his resolve? I don’t buy it. He is one flaky soldier if a girl can easily reduce him from a prideful soldier to a man governed by his penis.
Billie Ellish – bad guy