Quiet misfit Rose doesn't expect to fall in love with the sleepy beach town of Leonora. Nor does she expect to become fast friends with beautiful, vivacious Pearl Kelly, organizer of the high school float at the annual Harvest Festival parade. It's better not to get too attached when Rose and her father live on the road, driving their caravan from one place to the next whenever her dad gets itchy feet. But Rose can't resist the mysterious charms of the town or the popular girl, try as she might.
Pearl convinces Rose to visit Edie Baker, once a renowned dressmaker, now a rumored witch. Together Rose and Edie hand-stitch an unforgettable dress of midnight blue for Rose to wear at the Harvest Festival—a dress that will have long-lasting consequences on life in Leonora, a dress that will seal the fate of one of the girls. Karen Foxlee's breathtaking novel weaves friendship, magic, and a murder mystery into something moving, real, and distinctly original.
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Number of Pages: 288
Reviewed by Peyton, age 17
The Midnight Dress, by Karen Foxlee, is a book that manages to combine elements of both fantasy and realism into a book that is as magical as it is relatable. The plot of this book revolves around an enchanted midnight blue dress. This may seem like an archetypical set up for a fairy tale, but this potentially superficial plot is countered by the relatable daily struggles of fifteen-year-old Rose Lovell. Rose is a character that a reader can truly identify with; her day-to-day trials and her perception of the world are both vivid and realistic. The characters in this story are the book’s strongest element, and anchor a potentially superficial fairytale back to a believable and poignant coming of age story. Along with the characters, the writing itself is poetic and beautiful, giving the reader an even stronger emotional connection to the text and characters. I recommend this book to readers 12 and up because of the mature subjects broached in this story. This book is a fantasy novel that manages to communicate the collective adolescent experiences of insecurity, alienation and hope, and is definitely worth picking up!
This book releases October of 2013!
Buy Hardcover | $16.99
Peyton, age 17
Peyton, age 17