Miss Kate Daltry doesn't believe in fairy tales . . . or happily ever after. Forced by her stepmother to attend a ball, Kate meets a prince . . . and decides he's anything but charming. A clash of wits and wills ensues, but they both know their irresistible attraction will lead nowhere. For Gabriel is promised to another woman—a princess whose hand in marriage will fulfill his ruthless ambitions. Gabriel likes his fiancée, which is a welcome turn of events, but he doesn't love her. Obviously, he should be wooing his bride-to-be, not the witty, impoverished beauty who refuses to fawn over him. Godmothers and glass slippers notwithstanding, this is one fairy tale in which destiny conspires to destroy any chance that Kate and Gabriel might have a happily ever after. Unless a prince throws away everything that makes him noble . . . Unless a dowry of an unruly heart trumps a fortune . . . Unless one kiss at the stroke of midnight changes everything.
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First half - 1 star
Second half - 5 stars
Seeing as it's a historical retelling of Cinderella, I was pretty excited about reading A Kiss at Midnight. It'd been a while since I'd read a good forbidden romance themed novel, but the beginning was dull enough that I was certain this one wasn't going to change that. Thankfully, the story became absolutely magical during the last hundred pages and saved this from being a complete disappointment.
A Kiss at Midnight is my first read by Eloisa James and I'm disappointed to say that the writing was altogether lackluster and the story wasn't as interesting as it could have easily been. In addition, the chapters' endings were extremely abrupt and I found myself re-reading them several times before convincing myself that I hadn't missed anything important. This made me feel rather disconcerted throughout the book.
Gabriel was absolutely wonderful, but Kate's personality didn't impress me at all. The side characters, however, were well-rounded and lovable (especially Henry and Wick) and made the story much more lively than it would've been otherwise.
The ending was fantastic and everything I'd initially expected from the novel. Unfortunately, it took such a long time to get there that it did little to change my overall impression.
To sum it up, A Kiss at Midnight was a boring and entirely forgettable story, which could have been a lot better if not for the slow beginning and Kate's dull personality. The next book (When Beauty Tamed the Beast) is a retelling of my favorite fairy tale though, so I'm pretty sure I'll be continuing with the series.
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