The Midnight Palace is the second in a series of novels I wrote for young adults in the 1990s, back when even I was probably more young than adult myself! Writing for the young, or the young at heart, is a risky business and I learned that teenagers are a notoriously demanding and honest audience. My intention when crafting these books was to create stories that would appeal to them; also that they would hopefully be enjoyed by more mature and experienced fellow travellers for whom they might rekindle memories of the first books they had read, those magical tales of mystery and adventure that every reader hoards in the treasure chest of their brain. So whether you are young or young at heart, I hope you will enjoy this ride into the twilight world of Calcutta in the 1930s, where the shadows of the night are thicker than blood. Never mind the number of candles on your birthday cake – for those in the know, it’s what lies beneath them that matters!
On the eve of his sixteenth birthday, Ben and his group of friends are preparing to leave St Patrick’s orphanage where they have grown up. They have formed a secret club, The Chowbar Society, that meets each week in an old ruin they have christened The Midnight Palace. But just as they are about to leave, an old woman appears. She introduces Ben to Sheere, the sister from whom he was separated at birth. She also comes with a warning: in order to survive the next few hours they must confront the deadliest enigma in the history of the city of palaces…
"Murders most foul, chilling crimes and dark deeds... Carlos Ruiz Zafón, author of The Shadow of the Wind, locates his ghost story in The Midnight Palace" Vogue
"Set in 1930s Calcutta, this supernatural thriller is gripping and at times scary, but makes for a compelling read." Four Stars Woman's Own
'Zafon's young adult fiction was published in Spain long before he became an international sensation, and its fascinating to see, in his second book, premonitory glimpses of The Shadow of the Wind. ..Zafón makes it look so easy but he's in a class of his own.' Suzi Feay, Financial Times
15 Books You Must Read This Summer! 'Magical mystery about a pair of orphaned twins separated at birth... Why read it? Because you loved the imagination, magic and fantasy of Zafón’s blockbuster debut, The Shadow of the Wind.' Essentials
'In a tale of a secret society, a labyrinthine railway station and a shadowy figure from the past, their story and denouement has the hallmarks of the fine writing in the author's best-selling The Shadow of the Wind.' Choice