Kill the Tone: MIDNIGHT CITY by J. Barton Mitchell

Posted 24 December, 2012 | Mary @ TheBookSwarm | | 5 Comments

YA Post-Apocalyptic with Aliens!
384 pages, hardcover
Available now (October 2012)
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin

Earth has been conquered by an alien race known as the Assembly. The human adult population is gone, having succumbed to the Tone—a powerful, telepathic super-signal broadcast across the planet that reduces them to a state of complete subservience. But the Tone has one critical flaw. It only affects the population once they reach their early twenties, which means that there is one group left to resist: Children.

Holt Hawkins is a bounty hunter, and his current target is Mira Toombs, an infamous treasure seeker with a price on her head. Itโ€™s not long before Holt bags his prey, but their instant connection isnโ€™t something he bargained for. Neither is the Assembly ship that crash-lands near them shortly after. Venturing inside, Holt finds a young girl who remembers nothing except her name: Zoey.

As the three make their way to the cavernous metropolis of Midnight City, they encounter young freedom fighters, mutants, otherworldly artifacts, pirates, feuding alien armies, and the amazing powers that Zoey is beginning to exhibit. Powers that suggest she, as impossible as it seems, may just be the key to stopping the Assembly once and for all.

Aliens have landed and, after kicking some serious human ass and taking over the world, they’re content to sit back and wait for the Tone to take the survivors. In the meantime, kids rule the world.

I do still enjoy a well-written post-apocalyptic novel and MIDNIGHT CITY definitely works, with minor quibbles. But the good first. Holt (and his dog, Max, who I was afraid was going to bite the big one the entire book), Mia and Zoey are all great characters and really make the story for me. Holt plays his loner card like a pro while Mia is the tough-and-brilliant survivor and Zoey’s the adorable-but-strange little girl who brings them all together into a cohesive unit.

Midnight City itself is quite amazing and I could have spent the whole story there quite happily. With warring tribes, a huge board that keeps everyone’s “score” and standing in the community and interesting trinkets, it begs for more exploring. But it’s all about the trio getting in, getting what they need and escaping with all their fingers and toes intact.

There was almost too much going on (almost…) what with the aliens, the Tone, the hunting, the zombie-like creatures and all. And I ended up with a ton more questions about the aliens than I wanted to have. Yes, I know this is a series but why did the aliens come to the planet in the first place? What’s up with the Tone? What are they doing with all the people who succumb to the Tone? What are they planning to do? Why haven’t they attacked Midnight City and decimated it? Gah! The questions are killin’ me — too bad I’ll have to wait until the next novel comes out (which I don’t even know if the author has another one sold…there’s nothing listed on GoodReads! NOOOO!).

Overall, an excellent, edge-of-your-seat novel with fantastic imagery set in a bleak yet amazing post-apocalyptic backdrop.

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5 Responses to “Kill the Tone: MIDNIGHT CITY by J. Barton Mitchell”

  1. I hate that, when you get into a series but don’t even know for sure if there will be more books. Frustrating! I don’t think I have read a review for this yet, but I think I would hold off until I know there’s going to be more and maybe wait until closer to that release date. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m sick of waiting on sequels. My goal for 2013 is to catch up on the series I’m already reading or own and try not to start to many new ones. We’ll see how that goes…

  2. *hugs*
    I’m sorry there is not more info on the sequel! that drives me up the wall too!
    also, Im curious about how old they are? ’cause you say kids rule the world but I wonder how young they are.
    I would worry about the dog too! I often do. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Great review.

  3. Max doesn’t bit the big one though right Mary? RIGHT? I cannot deal with animal deaths in books or movies, they rip my heart out every time:( I feel like I would likely have a lot of the same questions as you did, but it seems like you weren’t overwhelmed by your questions and were able to enjoy this one despite them. I might have to give it a try!!!

    HAPPY HOLIDAYS! *hugs*