Adam's Reviews > Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
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's review
May 07, 2007

it was ok
Recommended for: fans of the film

This was a decent book. There was a lot of mood, of which I'm a big fan. The characters all had the potential to be very interesting, but unfortuately, they weren't developed. That's not to say you don't spend a lot of time with them, or find out anything about them, it's just that you don't really give a damn.

The book is written by a magazine journalist who ends up living on and off in Savanah, GA for eight years to investigate and chronicle a murder and it's trials. This book is more or less one long magazine article, detailng the events, and lives, but never really giving you sympathy for any of the characters.

It does a fine job of keeping the mystery of whether Jim Williams really did the deed a secret, but in comparison to In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (which I'm reading currently) this is not worth the effort.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
April 1, 2007 – Finished Reading
May 7, 2007 – Shelved

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Ara (new) - rated it 2 stars

Ara I agree with you 100%. And I also made the comparison to Capote's incredible "In Cold Blood" and, of course, this book pales in that comparison.

Casey I totaly agree the characters were so under developed which is just sad IMO because they held such potential.

Katie You've summed up my thoughts perfectly.

Marnee Dearman Uh most of the characters were not to be developed. The story was really about Svannah, not the individual characters. It was not even about Jim Williams. The writer even made this clear at the end of the novel.

Wingreen I agree. This book is a real struggle to get through. Life's too short to waste anymore time on it when there are so many better books out there (somewhere!) waiting to be read.

Sarah I completely agree. I'm almost done right now and the end can't come fast enough

message 7: by Ap (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ap I disagree and I feel like by not developing them at once the author allows for a specific sense of mystery for the reader on each character.

Lisa M. He didn't move to Savannah to learn about the murders. This is made clear throughout the beginning, and rest of the book ...

Shawna If it hadn't been for the murder then the book would have just been a series of vignettes about annoying rich people and it wouldn't have been a book at all.

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