Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke {review}

Wink Poppy Midnight
by April Genevieve Tucholke
♦publisher: Dial Books
♦release date: March 22nd, 2016
♦hardcover, 352 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦sounce: from publisher for honest review
Every story needs a hero.
Every story needs a villain.
Every story needs a secret.

Wink is the odd, mysterious neighbor girl, wild red hair and freckles. Poppy is the blond bully and the beautiful, manipulative high school queen bee. Midnight is the sweet, uncertain boy caught between them. Wink. Poppy. Midnight. Two girls. One boy. Three voices that burst onto the page in short, sharp, bewitching chapters, and spiral swiftly and inexorably toward something terrible or tricky or tremendous.

What really happened?
Someone knows.
Someone is lying.

Review: I make it no secret---I like my stories bizarre and a little bit twisted. Stories that lead you off one way and then explode your mind with things you might never have seen coming, and in completely off-the-wall ways. I like them haunting, enchanting, mind-boggling. Stories like Never Let Me Go, The Accident Season, The Walls Around Us,...undeniable weird and eerie, but completely awesome.  Yes, what I'm saying here, is that Wink Poppy Midnight falls right in line with these wonderful examples of books that are just my taste. Weird, wild, heart-crushing. Absolutely loved every page.

The dynamic of these three characters feels like an enigma, you get an inkling from the get-go (and the synopsis lends to this as well) that you're going to get more from these characters than they initially seem. Midnight seems lonely and a bit tortured, longing to get away from his unhealthy "thing" with Poppy and gets swept along in Wink's whimsical fairy tale view of everything. Poppy seems to lay everything out so straight that there could be no denying her brand of evil. And Wink keeps you guessing if she's just spacey or incredibly naive or just above it all--or maybe something else.

There are times when the writing is literally like reading poetry, with a very defined repetition and rhythm that really hammers the thoughts, feelings, or vivid imagery that each character is trying to convey home.  I loved the use of alternating POV and the short chapters, each one like little intense bursts of voice and thought. Sigh---just writing this review makes me want to read it again right this second. I know this brand of weird won't be everyone's cup of tea, especially with a somewhat not-exactly-cut-and-dry ending.  But this was definitely my kind of book.


April Genevieve Tucholke is the author of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea and its sequel, Between the Spark and the Burn. She loves classic horror movies and coffee. She has lived in many places, including Scotland, and currently resides in Oregon with her husband.

Pre-order: Indiebound  •  BookDepository  •  Amazon


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