Book Review: Midnight Crossroad by Charlaine Harris

Midnight Crossroad is the first book in the Midnight, Texas series by Charlaine Harris. The audio book version is narrated by Susan Bennet. If you remember, I read the second book in this series, Day Shift, first and promised to go back and read the first. I am very glad I did. 

Welcome to Midnight, Texas, a town with many boarded-up windows and few full-time inhabitants, located at the crossing of Witch Light Road and Davy Road. It's a pretty standard dried-up western town. There's a pawnshop (someone lives in the basement and is seen only at night). There's a diner (people who are just passing through tend not to linger). And there's new resident Manfred Bernardo, who thinks he's found the perfect place to work in private (and who has secrets of his own). Stop at the one traffic light in town, and everything looks normal. That is far from the truth.

Midnight Crossroad made me happy very quickly. The set up for the tiny town, which appears to be a boring and dried up Texas town is a slow build up. Everyone in the town has some secrets and a past they do not want to share. Bobo is just about the most normal character in the town, and he has his own secrets. His grandfather was a white supremacists whose actions have lead those of similar mindset looking for Bobo in search of weapons. Harris fans will see references to the Shakespeare series in Bobo’s backstory (which made me very, very happy). Manfred is Bobo’s newest tenant- and our connection to the Harper Connelly series (and Sookie for that matter). He is a psychic looking for a quiet town and a place that does not ask questions. He has found that in Midnight, but he has also found many questions he wants to ask, but should not. After Manfred gets settled in a bit the trouble comes to town. Bobo’s missing girlfriend is found dead and the hunt for the murderer is on. Outsiders suspect Bobo, but no one in Midnight believes it. Readers and Manfred discover more about this town and its inhabitants than any of those inhabitants might like but answers are found. This has a closer feel to many of Harris’s mysteries than her Sookie series, so readers that became disenchanted with her writing towards the end of Sookie’s run- and after watching any True Blood- will be released with this new series.

A few caveats here. I am not sure who exactly the main character of this series is, although I think it is the town. Readers that do not handle reading books that switch between several points of view will be frustrated here. While this keeps the reader on their toes, it can be very frustrating. Most of the characters are given equal weight, and sketchy pasts. I think the only exception here Is Madonna and Teacher- I have yet to see much about their history. I think rendering the second first book was actually a good thing in this case, because I had a good grasp on who the main players were before I even started. 

Midnight Crossroad is the opening mystery to a series that could be fantastic. I am going to keep reading this series. I still want to know more about these characters, their town, and why they found themselves in Midnight. The changing points of view can be frustrating, but in a series that depends so much on secrets it just might be necessary.  

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