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A Wish After Midnight Paperback – February 16, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Skyscape; First Edition edition (February 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982555059
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982555057
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #860,990 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Zetta Elliott was born and raised outside of Toronto, Canada but has lived and taught in Brooklyn for over 10 years. An educator and a writer, Elliott has published numerous works of poetry, plays, essays, and children's books, including Bird, her critically acclaimed picture book which was released in 2008. Elliott also originally released A Wish after Midnight in 2008, in response to a need for more books that spoke to the varied roots and realities of children in urban schools. She is currently working on a sequel to A Wish after Midnight.

More About the Author

Born in Canada, Zetta Elliott moved to Brooklyn in 1994 to pursue her PhD in American Studies at NYU. Her poetry has been published in several anthologies, and her plays have been staged in New York, Chicago, and Cleveland. Her essays have appeared in Horn Book Magazine, School Library Journal, and Hunger Mountain. Her first picture book, BIRD, won the Honor Award in Lee & Low Books' New Voices Contest; it was named Best of 2008 by Kirkus Reviews, a 2009 ALA Notable Children's Book, and BIRD won the Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers. Elliott's first young adult novel, A WISH AFTER MIDNIGHT, has been called "gripping," "a revelation...vivid, violent and impressive history." SHIP OF SOULS was published in February 2012; it was included in Booklist's Top Ten Sci-fi/Fantasy Titles for Youth and was a finalist for the 2013 Phillis Wheatley Award. Her latest novel, THE DEEP, was released in November 2013. Zetta Elliott is Assistant Professor in the Center for Ethnic Studies at Borough of Manhattan Community College. She currently lives in Brooklyn.

Learn more at: http://zettaelliott.com/

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 42 people found the following review helpful By DAC VINE VOICE on July 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
I've started to wait a few days after finishing a book before doing a post. So I can marinate on what I've read and allow the words fully sink in. When I finished A Wish After Midnight I was very satisfied and felt it was a very good novel. Four days later with the novel still fresh in my head and flipping through the book , I realize I may not of given the book enough credit.
15 yr old Genna lives in a one bedroom apartment with her mother and three siblings. Her mother struggles to make enough money so the family can move to a better neighborhood. Genna does her part by staying out of trouble, getting good grades, looking after younger brother, Tyjuan. She finds solace in the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. Genna befriends another Garden regular Mr. Christiansen an older white man. Mr Christiansen seemed like a nice man at first I couldn't understand why his appearance was so short. Then I remembered this isn't a book about a troubled black girl who needs a nice old white man to teach her importance of dreaming. I believe Elliott includes this character, hoping the reader will learn from Genna to judge individuals on their merits not their race, gender or other things they can't control.
Genna is not poisoned by her mother's hatred of white people.

"I don't want to think like Mama. I try not to lump Hannah and all white people together cause that's exactly what I don't want people doing to me. I want people to accept me for who I am with my own ways, and my own ideas and my own future that's separate from everything else going on. Separate from Rico dealing drugs and Toshi acting fast and Papi walking out on us. Separate from where I live or how I dress or the color of my skin. I'm not ashamed of none of those things.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Karl Bielefeldt VINE VOICE on January 1, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
There are many ways to respond to racism, and A Wish After Midnight explores just about every one imaginable. In an astounding feat of nuance, the author manages to present a deeply divisive subject in a deeply unifying way. She doesn't shy away from showing the worst in people, nor does she fail to recognize the best in those same people. While the book seems primarily intended to encourage young people to rise above the hand they're dealt, it is instructive for young and old, black and white alike.

In addition to the excellent theme and premise, the writing itself is solid. Each character is important to the story, and has a unique voice and outlook on life. It is a serious subject, and the plot is frightening at times. I definitely recommend an adult be there to discuss it, but it is thought-provoking enough that I will encourage my children to read it when they are old enough. I look forward to the sequel with anticipation.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By SevereWX VINE VOICE on January 7, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Wow, I could not put this work of art down! A Wish Midnight had me staying up reading this book well after midnight a few nights in a row, until I had completely devoured it's contents. Zetta Elliott has created one of the most humbling, thought-provoking, and enrapturing books I've ever had the pleasure of reading. I'm not even going to attempt to do this book any justice by writing any details of the events that touched me, as there is no possible way I could do this book any justice without somehow detracting from it's powerful message. Suffice it to say that A Wish After Midnight has left me quite speechless, but only in good ways. It's message, it's lessons, will be ones that find myself thinking about for a good long time to come. I look forward to reading the sequel.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By jebi44 on January 27, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Given the thoughtful handling of the topic of racism (both modern day and civil war era), this is truly a book that is worthy of study in jr. high and high school literature or history classes. Although this is a time travel story, it is not too overly fantastical, so one need not be a sci fi fan to enjoy it thoroughly.

Fifteen year-old Genna lives with her family in Brooklyn. Her mother hates white people, which Genna struggles to understand. Genna is acquainted with an older white gentleman whom she often sees at the nearby arboretum, and he seems perfectly kind. One day Genna is whisked back to civil war days. At first, she is mistaken for a runaway slave. She must make her way as best she can, and can only hope that she will one day return to her own time.

This is a lovely story with a powerful message. Genna is a very likable character. Fans of historical fiction will especially enjoy this. Highly recommended for ANYONE 13 and up.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By M. Grant on May 27, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I love time travel stories. Love `em. The person from the past dealing with changes and new technology. The person from the future dealing with a primitive society, in terms of technology and attitudes. Using their knowledge of what's going to happen to survive in a world much different from their own.

That's why I was excited to get my hands on "A Wish After Midnight" by Zetta Elliott. About an inner-city black teen who gets transported back to 1863.

I judge a book by how hard it is to put down. And this book was very easy to put down. In fact, it took me almost two years to read enough to write this review.

Genna is a poor black girl living in the worst part of the ghetto. It's a place she doesn't belong. Because she has hopes and goals and good grades.

For no other reason than a fight with her mother, she wakes up in 1863. How? That's all very confusing. A bunch of lights and ghosts, or something. She arrives in the past badly beaten. How? Why? Again, very confusing.

So, we meet her in the ghetto where she doesn't belong. Now she's in the past where she doesn't belong. But there's no time travel fun to be found here. No `how did I get here,' `how do I get back,' what can I change.' The only reason we know she's from the future is because she had pride, goals and a good education. Which not many black women had back then.

Nothing much happens, except her walking around sad. She was sad in the present, she's sad in the past. I finally had to start skimming chapters just to see if anything would happen. It didn't.

Oh, then her boyfriend from the future appears. Why? How? Don't know. Maybe it's true love. Except they've only talked a couple of times.
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