Having been away for a couple of weeks, what better way to return to blogging than with a review of It Ends At Midnight by Harriet Tyce? My enormous thanks to Rosie Margesson at Headline for sending me a surprise copy of It Ends At Midnight.
It Ends At Midnight was published by Headline imprint Wildfire on 14th April and is available for purchase through the links here.
It Ends At Midnight
It’s New Year’s Eve and the stage is set for a lavish party in one of Edinburgh’s best postcodes. It’s a moment for old friends to set the past to rights – and move on.
The night sky is alive with fireworks and the champagne is flowing. But the celebration fails to materialise.
Because someone at this party is going to die tonight.
Midnight approaches and the countdown begins – but it seems one of the guests doesn’t want a resolution.
They want revenge.
My Review of It Ends At Midnight
New Year’s Eve will be different this year!
Harriet Tyce has done it again with It Ends At Midnight. It’s nasty, corrupt, duplicitous and completely compelling. I loved it.
Following the dramatic opening, I had no idea how the present story involving Sylvie would tie in with it until the final few pages. With deft plotting, Harriet Tyce threads her narrative with little portends and omens that make the reader tense and that ensnare them so that they experience a feeling of uneasiness and dread as they read. I loved the sensation this created. I felt tense, fascinated and excited. It Ends At Midnight was a story that had me completely hooked.
The plot simply races along with short, mesmerising chapters that create drama and engagement. Whilst the story is leading the reader back to the beginning, what Harriet Tyce does so well is to place the drama against a backdrop of personal and professional flaws, misdemeanours and errors, that swirl and reform like a malevolent kaleidoscope and inveigle their way into the reader’s brain, making It Ends At Midnight reverberate long after it’s finished. I loved this effect.
Sylvie is a brilliant creation. She’s a pillar of society working in law and yet she’s rash, self-delusional and possibly as criminal as those she encounters in court. Her drinking, and her self obsession, make her a person to be repulsed by and yet I found myself drawn to her like a moth to a flame. Through Sylvie, there’s an almost Shakespearean hubris that is illustrated perfectly, making It Ends At Midnight a fantastic read.
Tess too is complex and misguided. Harriet Tyce writes her so evocatively that I found my responses to her echoed Sylvie’s, drawing me further and further into this captivating narrative.
Underneath the exciting plot there are modern themes that represent so much of what happens in the world, with violence towards women, social media, sexism and ambition swirling through the pages of the story with devastating toxicity. The story may be dramatic and entertaining, but it also holds a salutary concept that any one of us could find ourselves in Sylvie’s situation.
It Ends At Midnight is a brilliant, breath taking, exploration of revenge that I thought was just wonderful. Don’t miss it.
About Harriet Tyce
Harriet Tyce grew up in Edinburgh and studied English at Oxford University before doing a law conversion course at City University. She practised as a criminal barrister in London for nearly a decade, and subsequently completed an MA in Creative Writing – Crime Fiction at the University of East Anglia. She lives in north London. Her first novel, Blood Orange, published in 2019 to huge critical acclaim and her second novel, The Lies You Told, published in summer 2020. It Ends at Midnight is her third novel.