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Midnight: A Gangster Love Story (The Midnight Series) Hardcover – November 4, 2008

626 customer reviews
Book 2 of 5 in the Midnight Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Souljah's follow-up to her bestselling novel, TheColdest Winter Ever, is another gritty coming-of-age tale, picking up the story of Midnight (a character in Coldest Winter) as he tries desperately to navigate American culture, Brooklyn streets and the dicey business of growing up. The novel begins as seven-year-old Midnight and his pregnant mother, Umma, are forced to leave their privileged life in Sudan for a hardscrabble American existence. Midnight spends his formative years in Brooklyn guiding and translating for his loyal, loving and talented mother, helping her get a factory job while encouraging her to start a clothing line. Eventually, Midnight starts working at a Chinatown fish shop, finds love, joins a dangerous hustler's basketball league and tries to disentangle his ambivalent feelings toward romance, family and personal honor. Souljah's sensitive treatment of her protagonist is honest and affecting, with some realistic moments of crisis. Unfortunately, a slack plot and slow pacing cause serious bloat, and Souljah's distinctive prose is woefully unpolished. Frustrations aside, Souljah has obvious talent and sincere motives, making her a street-lit sophomore worth watching. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Sister Souljah is best known for her work as a political activist and educator of underclass urban youth. A graduate of Rutgers University, she is a beloved personality in her own community. She lives in Jersey City with her husband and son.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Midnight Series (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books; 1st Atria Books Hardcover Ed edition (November 4, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416545182
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416545187
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (626 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #224,817 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sister Souljah is a successful political activist and educator of underclass youth. Her national bestseller The Coldest Winter Ever, considered the definitive novel of the hip-hop generation, marked her fiction debut; she is also the author of a memoir entitled No Disrespect. She lives in New York City with her husband and son.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

86 of 93 people found the following review helpful By Urban Fiction Journalist on November 10, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Like others have said, it is a prequel, it does get boring at times, and does appear unbelievable at others. However, it is a very ambitious and provacative novel. It's literature. It will make you think, it will make you question yourself. It may even have you considering changing the way you operate. It does calls American born blacks out about their behavior and beliefs - hell, all Americans for that matter. Midnight is vicious. Was it worth the wait? No. Is it worth $26.95? No. However, it is worth the read. It can generate some serious dialogue in our community. It's a very intellectual read that can and should be appreciated. It provides plenty to talk about if you can manage to finish it.
My biggest problem is it left me with too many questions, more questions than I had going into it. And, I'm just hoping it doesn't take another ten years get the answers.
Also, I don't think it should be referred to as a gangster's love story becasue nothing about Midnight, in this story, is gangster. Yes, he is a killer - solely for the protection of himself and loved ones - but NOT a gangster.
So, if you're looking to reunite with Winter and her family and will be highly disappointed if they are not there, don't waste your money. If your don't mind be taken on a journey that's overly informative yet sometimes dull along they way, then gear up. Midnight aint for everybody.
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72 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First off if you are looking for a sequel to The Coldest Winter Ever, this aint it, you will be very disappointed. Though the story is about the charachter Midnight from the Coldest Winter Ever, this book is about his life before the Santiagos. As a matter of fact the oldest he gets in this book is the age of fourteen. But let me tell you he happens to be a very mature fourteen yr. old, who lives the life of a well bred man who instead if giving into temptation resist it. I found him so captivating the way he lives his life, the culture, the religion, though I do not agree with everything of muslim faith i do believe that if we all could just live by this one law, no fornication!!! we would be much better off as a people, Dont You Think? My favorite charachter in this book after Midnight of course, is Bangs I found her as he did funny but also bold. As much as I respected Midnight for staying true to hiself and his beliefs I found myself a little upset that things could'nt and would'nt come together for Midnight and Bangs i really believe he would have made a big difference in her life a positive difference. so even though I was a little disappointed that this had nothing to do with the Coldest Winter Ever. I was not disapointed with this book not at all. All ive got to say is Sister Souljah you better be working on part2 Because you can not leave me hangin like this!!!!!!!
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Ruka Porter on May 2, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I never wanted to read a second book about Winter. She's a spoiled detestable brat who's incapable of feeling any sort of genuine emotion for anyone other than herself. However, the difference between Midnight and Winter is that for all Winter's scheming, narcissism and decadence, she was interesting and entertaining. In this story, Midnight comes across as a judgmental, condescending bore. Oh my god, does this character love to judge! He judges the little kids who, god forbid, are scared of getting shot by the neighborhood gangsters. He judges black Americans for...well, breathing. It's like black Americans couldn't live in this book without Midnight judging them for it. His holier than thou attitude was obnoxious and grating and I found myself having to just grit my teeth and bear it to get through this book.

Questions: First of all, where was Midnight's father? What happened to the other wives? Why didn't he check up on his pregnant wife and child if he was supposed to be this epitome of what it means to be a man? If America sucks so much why didn't his dad wire them money and have them live somewhere else? Hell, what happened to all their money? These were just some of the questions that were bought up while reading this book, and unfortunately for the reader these questions are never answered.

It's no secret that Sister Souljah absolutely adores the Midnight character, I remember her saying in the re-released CWE that he was the heart of the first book. The problem with Midnight is that in this book Sister Souljah writes him as some sort of Superman--someone who's fearless and has the answers to everything and I'm sorry that's not normal for a kid. Hell that's not even normal for an adult. Normal kids get scared from time to time.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Yasmin Coleman on December 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Midnight by Sister Souljah is not a sequel, even though it was initially advertised as being so. Later it was marketed as a prequel and the story of Midnight between the ages of 7 to 14. Prior to reading Midnight, I heard a lot of viewpoints...some favorable...some unfavorable. But, as with any book and author that I'm partial to, I will read for myself to form my own viewpoints. And, I did just that with Midnight.

For many, the beginning was slow and a turn-off. That wasn't the case with me...I actually liked the beginning and reading about the history and values of another culture/religion. But, about one-third of the way into the book, the pacing slowed significantly for me and too much of the same seemed to continue to be rehashed. I understood who Midnight was and why his religion was important to him as well as his heritage...but, at some point, I started to question how judgmental he was of Americans, particularly African Americans, and thought...'How many children, especially boys are really this astute?' Is this Midnight's voice or is it the voice of Sister Souljah. I kept hearing more of her voice, and as such, Midnight's voice did not ring authentically for me.

And then there were a number of loose ends...whatever happened to the father being the primary question, but there were many others involving topics such as home schooling, finances, catching babies (if you read the book you know what I'm talking about, mortgages, taxes, receiving blessings from Akemi's father... just to name a few.

Suspended belief aside, I was just spent and mentally and emotionally exhausted by the time I got to the end of the book. I almost felt dirty to be an AFRICAN-AMERICAN...
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