The Midnight Bargain

The Midnight Bargain

Book - 2021
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In a romantic fantasy set in a magical Regency England, a sorceress must balance magic-ending familial duty with her ambition to become her world's first great sorceress.
Publisher: New York, NY : Erewhon, 2021
ISBN: 9781645660347
Characteristics: 375 p. ; 22 cm

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AureliaReads
Apr 02, 2021

Found this very tedious and the writing kind of ---- clumsy and trying too hard. The first 50 pages repeat over and over that she wants to be a sorceress and that society is very unfair to block women from doing this, as if the author thinks readers won't grasp the concept the 3rd or 4th -- or 7th time it is explained. The fantasy world of fancy ball gowns and handsome beaux was equally tedious. A book for preteen readers ?

r
rixonkj
Mar 17, 2021

I've seen the author describe this book as "Pokemon, but make it Jane Austen," which is a delightful pitch for a delightful book. It's quite feminist, with two lovely sibling relationships and some painfully true commentary on women's rights. Strong recommend!

A warm fantasy romance quite worthy of the read, set in 19th century worldly settings, but with magic, sumptuous clothing, and righteous womanhood.

Kris--Pt. Roberts

St├ęphanie_biblio Mar 10, 2021

This book is like a Jane Austen novel with magic...and feminism. Wonderful read. It is the equivalent of a light and delicate pastry for the mind.

STPL_JessH Mar 02, 2021

A book that begins with an argument over a magical book?! Yes, please! This is a bit like Belgravia with undercurrents of sorcery. It is an alternate reality where photos of young eligible women hang in a portrait gallery at the beginning of "Bargaining Season" which is exactly what you think it is. There is quite a bit of social commentary around women's rights and what it means to give up gifts and talents in order to marry. It's a fast read with lots of detail. So, if you enjoy historical regency fiction, then check it out!

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Activevoice
Feb 24, 2021

I must admit if this book had not been part of the CBC Canada Reads list of five books I would never have read the novel. Having said that it was certainly well written, lots of action, and the fantasy regency world was intricately and well described. Would I read another? No.

JessicaGma Feb 06, 2021

It's quite interesting world-building in a Regency-like setting in another world. women aren't allowed to be sorcerers in this world as it will damage their children, so women are basically chattel. They are forced to wear a collar when married so they kids are unaffected, and Beatrice has an extreme horror of this fate, so she will stop at nothing to assure it. It was good once it got going. I liked Mary Robinette Kowal's take on magic Regency better, but this was an interesting take.

WPL_Jaclyn Dec 12, 2020

Despite a bit of a slow start, I ended up adoring Polk's The Midnight Bargain. This magical tale had a flavour of the Regency era, which as a historical romance reader, I absolutely loved. I was also fascinated by the fantasy world that Polk created. This is a world where women are not allowed to practice magic since it has the potential to harm their unborn children. So, upon marriage, woman are forced to wear a collar that blocks their magic and isn't removed until they are past their child bearing years, and subsequently when they don't have much time left to learn how to use their abilities. There were times when I had to set this down because I was so enraged! Luckily, Beatrice is a wonderful character who refuses to bend to these rules even when pressured by her family and society.

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