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Absolute midnight
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Trade Reviews

  Booklist Review

Fans have waited five years for the third book in what is now slated to be a five-book series about the adventures of Candy Quackenbush in the bizarre archipelago world of Abarat. Here, Candy and her sidekick, Malingo, take on merciless Mater Motley as she extinguishes the suns, moons, and stars to bring on Absolute Midnight. Before the book's end, three generations of Carrion evil forces are reunited and wreak havoc that only the imagination of Barker and his surreal paintings could conjure. Deaths abound, but don't count anyone down; this is a world of magic and redemption. While the first books focused on introducing the abundant characters and settings, this plot moves ahead at full speed. Still, the ride is tempered by serious moments, especially those of Candy's introspection, as well as humorous ones. Add in thematic plot strands about the cost of freedom, a budding romance, and hints of the next adventure to come, and readers will agree with Candy. So much still to do: to explore, to solve, to feel. --Dobrez, Cind. Copyright 2010 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

The long-awaited third book of Barker's series has finally arrived.This middle volume has the strengths and flaws of its predecessors. Heroine Candy Quackenbush and evil Mater Motley continue to take center stage, and both continue to be vehicles rather than fully fleshed characters. Mater Motley furthermore turns out to be a pawn for the Nephauree, a Lovecraftian race of tentacled creatures from elsewhere who have in mind the utter destruction of the Abarat. Candy gets a love-at-first-sight subplot devoid of emotional resonance, based as it is in neither conversation nor interaction. The sometimes lovely, often purple prose is peppered with corny dialogue (declarations of love while facing death; "comic" bickering between John Mischief and his brothers, who are heads on his antlers). True moments of terror (Candy's alcoholic father as the preacher of a church powered by Abaratian evil) vie for attention with the flora and fauna of Abarat and the adventures of a chosen one who conveniently always has the right spell, in what is either an homage to fantasy tropes or a glaring example of the stereotype. Barker's powerful, often unpleasant illustrations continue to play off the text, sometimes confusinglycaptions and more careful placement of images would help readers make the connections.All in all, fans will revel and newcomers will be baffled. (Fantasy. 13 up)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
<p>Clive Barker, author of The Thief of Always, delivers an epic battle filled with fantasy and adventure that readers won't want to put down!</p> <p>Candy Quackenbush, her allies, and her enemies are back in Abarat: Absolute Midnight, the third book in Clive Barker's New York Times bestselling Abarat series.</p> <p>"The waiting is over. Tomorrow there will be no dawn. Only midnight, absolute and eternal." Mater Motley, the Old Mother of Darkness herself--following the events of Abarat and Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War--has crafted a scheme that may destroy the Abarat, a vast archipelago where every hour is an island in one eternal day.</p> <p>When Candy discovers Mater Motley's secret plot, she realizes that only she can bring an end to the destruction. Only she can stop the complete darkness threatening to abolish all hope and happiness from the Abarat.</p>
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