This is a sequel, so there will be spoilers for Grim Lovelies below.
Midnight Beauties by Megan Shepherd
The witches, beasties, goblins, and Royals return in this spellbinding conclusion to New York Times best-selling author Megan Shepherd’s Grim Lovelies duology.
Ever since she discovered her affinity for magic, seventeen-year-old Anouk has been desperate to become a witch. It’s the only way to save her friends who, like Anouk, are beasties: animals enchanted into humans. But unlike Anouk, the other beasties didn’t make it out of the battle at Montélimar in one piece.
With her friends now trapped in their animal forms, Anouk is forced into a sinister deal involving a political marriage with her sworn enemy, a wicked plot to overthrow London’s fiercest coven of witches, and a deadly trial of fire to become a witch. The price for power has always been steep in the world of the Haute. Now, it will cost Anouk everything.
Wicked and delightful, this spellbinding sequel and conclusion to Grim Lovelies is perfect for fans of The Cruel Prince and The Hazelwood Wood.
It’s very possible that this book would have been just as good as Grim Lovelies to me if I read it quicker. Since I was on vacation, it took me twice as long to read, so it felt like it dragged. I don’t think it did though. It seemed fairly fast paced. There were some things I didn’t like, mostly a love triangle. A good one works and some readers may like this one, but I wasn’t a fan of how it was done in Midnight Beauties.
Early in Midnight Beauties, Anouk decided that she needed to become a witch in order to turn her friends back from animals into people. There is a trial of sorts for young pretties (obviously Anouk is a beastie) to see if they are worthy of becoming a true witch. The travel to find the place was dangerous and Anouk arrives with just two weeks to prepare. All the other girls had been there for awhile. They must find their magic Crux and survive the Coal Baths. The chances are not good. Out of ten girls, there is only one that usually makes it. The ones who do not make it across burn and there is nothing left of them. The Duke who runs this also took the magic Anouk had so she didn’t have any advantage. Anouk studies like crazy and even makes friends with some of the girls there. Before she left, she struck a deal with Rennar. He agreed to help her with changing her friends back one by one, but in the end, Anouk had to marry him.
I won’t ruin what happens at the Coal Baths. It isn’t exactly what I expected though. During this same time, there is an old dark magic taking over London. No one has been strong enough to stop it, so they Royals need to join together with some Witches and Beasties to find a way to contain the magic that had escaped. It destroys quickly and if it gets through London, it will continue to destroy every city there is. A lot of questionable alliances and magic are used. Again, I don’t want to spoil it. Anouk is still in love with Beau. Hunter Black actually survived. Viggo and the Goblins were there to help, too. But not everyone will survive trying to stop the plague. We also get some new characters in this book. The Duke is one, but Jak is another. There are deadly snow children and he’s one of them. I think my two favorites in this book were Petra and Luc.
I went back and forth on loving Anouk in this book and then not liking her so much. I felt that she became power hungry. Even though it was for a good reason, there was definitely an issue where she almost seemed obsessed. Power corrupts, so I worried for her if she was to become a witch. I really liked some of the new girls, but they were only in the beginning during the Coal Bath time. There is an animal death that is gross and bothered me a bit. Also, some people I really liked ended up dying.
Overall, this was a good follow up to Grim Lovelies, but I did like book one a lot more. I gave this one 4 stars. Sorry for my messy review. I hate reviewing sequels and series books because I worry about spoiling things.
Have you read Midnight Beauties? Did you read Grim Lovelies and plan on reading this one?