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The Midnight Hour

(The Midnight Hour #1)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  496 ratings  ·  130 reviews
When Big Ben sounds the stroke of midnight, Emily’s parents vanish.

As an adventurous eleven year old, Emily packs her sandwiches and her hedgehog, Hoggin, and heads into the Midnight Hour. A Victorian London frozen in time, the Midnight Hour is a magical place of sanctuary and of peril dreamt up by children – and inhabited by monsters of legend, creatures of the imaginatio
Paperback, 279 pages
Published February 7th 2019 by Chicken House Books
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Average rating 3.92  · 
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 ·  496 ratings  ·  130 reviews

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Alice-Elizabeth (marriedtobooks)
Set in the creepy backdrop of Victorian London (and present-day), young Emily is shocked to find her parents disappearing without a trace and her life in total danger. To find them, she has to go back in time but face many monsters along the way. She needs to battle with evil in a bid to find out everything about her family’s past before the worst happens to them. I liked the story-line and the spooky Victorian setting. However, I just couldn’t connect to Emily as much as I would have liked. At ...more
Very good and imaginative MG Fantasy. Emily is immensely likable, funny, spunky and delightfully contrary. Bonus points for two loving parents.
Apr 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a thoroughly different read for my son and I! So much of magic and fantasy that it was truly engrossing in the first half. However due to everything going on we took a very long time to finish this and perhaps weren’t able to truly do it justice.
Char (lunarchar_)
Jul 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audible, owned-read
(4.5). I listened to this on Audible and I LOVED it so very much - I definitely think I’m learning to love middle grade fantasy. And the narrator of this was incredible and I’m definitely keen to listen to other books she’s read.
Melanie  Brinkman
Just what lurks within the stroke of midnight?

When Emily's family starts receiving strange letters, her curiosity peaks. Her parents set off to investigate them, only to vanish. As things only get increasingly odd, Emily knows she must find them. Equipped with a family keepsake, a hedgehog, and a few sandwitches, she follows the trail of clues they've left, only to stumble into the weird and secret world of the Midnight Hour. In this dark, magical, alternate version of London stuck in Victorian
Claire ✨
IN SUMMARY: A truly fun adventure. THE MIDNIGHT HOUR is pacy, fantastical, fun, and sure to entertain and engage readers of all ages.


THE MIDNIGHT HOUR is a roaring adventure between our world and the landscape of a supernatural Victorian London at the peak of night. Though the voice is clunky and juvenile and relied on telling over showing at key moments, the story carries its own charm and whimsy that you can't help but enjoy yourself. The cast of characters is huge and wild
Amy (Golden Books Girl)
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
This middle grade fantasy tells the story of a girl named Emily as her parents vanish into the world of the Midnight Hour (a Victorian London frozen in time, where lots of weird and wild magical creatures live) and she must set off to save them, accompanied only by a runaway mouth that lands her in trouble a lot, a hedgehog and some sandwiches. I initially struggled a little to understand the world and what it was, which made it slightly tricky for me to get into the book, but I really started t ...more
Gabriela Pop
Feb 08, 2019 rated it liked it
A wonderfully heartfelt and fun story! Full of all the whimsy and spunk one could want,some compelling worldbuilding and magic system, cool parents and a feisty little protagonist to follow around. I was taken away by this, but ultimately it did have a certain je ne sais quois missing. Still enjoyed it nevertheless.
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020, fantasy
It's close to midnight and Emily is supposed to be in bed sound asleep, instead, she's awakened to the sounds of her parent's voices coming from downstairs. A letter has just arrived by "Night Post" and both of her parents are very concerned. The next morning, Emily learns her mother has set out to investigate and after a few days go by without a word, Emily's father then takes off and also vanishes. When strange visitors start showing up at Emily's house, Emily concludes that she'll have to fin ...more
Joy Smith
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, adventure
I love the portal premise (I love portals). And I appreciated the fact that Emily finally learns that her parents are interesting people. But before that--before they disappear--she finds them merely boring (her father is a postman who works the night shift) and aggravating, especially her mother. Then she really has to find them. She begins her travels with a pocket hedgehog, who tends to munch on the food she packed for her trip. The assorted characters she meets can be helpful or dangerous. ( ...more
Michelle Kenneth -
For lovers of The Trials of Morrigan Crow, The Midnight Hour is right up your alley.

I enjoyed this book. The beginning was a bit slow and boring, but once Emily's parents go missing and the bad guys appear in her world, things start to pick up. From the moment she steps foot in the alternate reality filled with magical creatures, vampires, changelings, ghouls and other creatures of the night, you're in for the long haul and enjoying every minute of it.

So yes, if you're looking for a new magical
Mar 02, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I was expecting more, but more of what, I'm not sure. Maybe more like 3.5 stars than 3. Also, it's annoying that they only credit the male author on Goodreads. It has two authors, and the other is Laura Trinder.
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Everything I could possibly want I got in this book: BRILLIANT characters, magic, some kind of mythology, funny and witty. Pair all of this with beautiful and interesting settings from libraries, to Big Ben and you have a book that is just exceptional.
Alis Meece
Mar 23, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. My kids got this in an owl crate jr sub box. We read out loud every book they get and this was definitely a favorite. They loved the humor and giggled through a good majority of the book. We loved the spooky elements and the idea that people aren't all they seem on the outside. Overall definitely recommend it!
Sam (she_who_reads_)
A fab middle grade read! Definitely check it out if you’re looking for a new read aloud, or for something quick, full of Magic and fun!
Katie Fellows
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic quick paced read- Hoggins steals the show!
Jun 16, 2020 rated it it was ok
Emily is an only child and has a rocky relationship with her mother. Her mother is quirky and tends to do unconventional things that put Emily in embarrassing situations. Her Dad is very quiet and as Emily refers to him "boring". One night after a particular awful discussion with her mom, Emily sneaks out of her room to find her mom suddenly leaving. After a week of no word from Mom, Emily's Dad decides to go and search for her mom. And then it is up to Emily to find her parents and bring them h ...more
I _teach_muggles
May 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Midnight Hour is the debut offering by duo Benjamin Read and Laura Trinder and is the first in what will be a series of books. According to their bio on, “Benjamin is the words, Laura is the art, and they colour in-between each other’s lines on storytelling to make it all work.” And work it does.

In amongst all the monsters, mayhem and madness there are strong messages about first impressions and celebrating differences. Almost everyone in the book is not as they appear
Adam Sequoyah
I'd rate this 2.5 stars if I could ... maybe even 2.7. But 3 seems a bit much for me, as I didn't like it quite that much.

The plot has a strong beginning and a fairly interesting middle, as we get to see more of the strange "Midnight Hour" world. But by 65-70% through the book, I had grown very uninterested. I pressed on and read the rest, but the plot remained quite slow right up until the final climactic burst.

Also, I'll submit a caveat to the above statements: What most intrigued me about the
Gaby Meares
Aug 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Emily lives in London with her parents. She's eleven years old, is always getting herself into trouble because of her 'big gob' and has a typical relationship with her parents: she finds them extremely embarrassing. But when her mum goes missing, followed by her dad, she knows she has to find them. This is where Emily's life veers off into another world, literally.
Read and Trinder have created a fabulous alternative world populated by creatures magical and mystical, good and evil. This parallel
Shelly Hammond
As the book starts, Emily is in trouble for sassing her mother even going so far as to making her mother cry. That's really quite bad in and of it's self! Bad Emily! Later on, she overhears her parents speaking and her mother leaves. She's gone awhile and soon her dad says he has to go somewhere but he'll be back soon. When the days stretch on and he doesn't come back either Emily realizes she's going to have to find them. She realizes this is even more urgent after a strange person knocks
Kimberly Ann
I wanted to read this book because the cover & title caught my fancy. Unfortunately the local library doesn't own it yet and I was sad that it wasn't even on their On Order list....

Well, I was cleaning out my mail pile (I don't read most of my posts) & I'd forgotten that I received a free ARC from Scholastic; Silly me Happy me!

Emily's mother is an artist who dumpster dives for art materials; her father works at the Midnight Post Office.

After receiving an odd letter, with even odder postage stamp
Dec 09, 2018 rated it liked it
This is a great read for any lover of adventures into fae realms. A very light hearted, action packed, heart warming story of a brave young lady who crosses the barrier between world to saver her parents of an unknown threat.

I specially love the idea of The Midnight Hour and how it entangles with the real world and the imagination surround it. To be honest, mixing reality and fantasy is one of my weaknesses, so I thoroughly enjoy these kind of stories. A great surprise was the main characters a
Dippy (A book a day keeps reality away)
This book was not bad per se, but I have come to expect a certain quality from British authors, which may have affected my rating of the book. There's something about British writing that never fails to blow me away. Perhaps it's something about the setting, or the humor, or the language itself, but my expectations automatically go up when I pick up a book by a British author. Sadly, this one failed me.

The writing was bland, the pace plodding, the main character annoying, and the setting very un

11yo Emily’s quirky, artist, garbage diving mother is the bane of her existence. She’s sooooo embarrassing! And Emily’s dad is just plain, boring: all he does is garden and deliver the mail. Until the night that Emily’s mom goes on a mysterious errand and then disappears altogether. And then, her dad disappears too.
When Emily goes in search of them, she finds herself in a completely new world. The Midnight Hour was stopped during London’s Victorian era and all of the world’s magic was held ther
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of my Goodreads giveaway wins - it came in the mail very quickly, I was pulled in by the blurbs and story line and couldn't put it down until I finished it, this morning at 2:18 AM...yes, it was that good. Young Emily must go into a dark, scary world that she had no idea even existed, in order to save her parents (yes, even her incredibly annoying and mysterious Mum), new friends, AND, maybe, the entire world as she knows it. Peopled with vampires, trolls, ogres, and who knows WHAT ...more
Rosie Rizk
Mar 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Wacky, fun, and imaginative.

Emily lives a normal boring life, which includes getting into major arguments with her embarrassing mother. When her mother leaves on an errand and doesn't come back, and then her father doesn't return from trying to find her mom, Emily finds her way into a wacky magical world full of monsters and dangers, and it's up to her to find her lost parents and to stop a powerful villain.

See full review at:

Emily is a great spunky chara
Jul 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
Skip this one if you are particular about the language used in children’s books. The authors consistently use “flippin'” in dialogue, clearly a substitute for the F bomb, and it’s totally unnecessary. Luckily I read the book aloud to my children and so was able to leave that out. Another thoroughly annoying aspect of the writing is the consistent failure to point out who is talking. I can’t count how many times I had to change my voice to repeat dialogue in a different voice. I can’t stand it wh ...more
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excitement as a normal evening in a house in London has a Midnight postal delivery. Emily knows there is no postal service so overhears her artful, hedgehog rescuing mother say she needs to go help as a family member is in trouble.
Emily & her mother had a huge argument they both have "the gob'" on them which I found rather a handsome trait to have when Emily sets out after her father goes missing too.
Questioning everything & going with her gut Emily meets allies & enemies as she uses her Dad's
Vanessa (@tworeadsworth)

"Have we gone back in time? I won't freak out if you tell me. I watch Doctor Who."

"No, dear, you haven't. It is rather that time here hasn't gone anywhere."

This book, you guys. I loved it.

We have a protagonist who is fierce, headstrong, has a temper and something about her just felt so real. I really loved her, but also all of the other characters. They are so very well written, so cute and diverse. I was fascinated by all of them.

The story is adorable to the tops, but also exciting. I find
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NZ Intermediate S...: The Midnight Hour 1 11 Apr 14, 2019 09:35PM  

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Benjamin Read writes comics and makes films. He wrote the multiply award-nominated PORCELAIN: A GOTHIC FAIRY TALE, the silent comic BUTTERFLY GATE, and children’s book, NIGHT POST, as well as the TRUE GRIT and SUPER 8 comic adaptations. He also wrote and produced the films ARMISTICE and 500 MILES NORTH. He is one of the founder members of the Improper Books comics collective, and is fuelled princi ...more

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