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Monday, 29 October 2012

Book Review #2

Warriors: The New Prophecy - Midnight
By: Erin Hunter


Background:

     Midnight is the first book of the second "Warriors" series, which are all
about a society of cats - personified, wild cats. Each of the four cat clans
has its own territory in the forest and each clan has a leader, a medicine
cat, warrior cats and other members. Each cat's name is two words put
together, such as Brambleclaw. The first part of a cat's name is given by
its parents. The last part of a cat's name changes over time, beginning with
"kit" when it's first born, changing to "paw" if the kit becomes a warrior
apprentice, and changing again if the cat becomes clan leader, medicine cat
or full warrior. On death, every cat's spirit joins the StarClan; this clan
of ancestor spirits tries to help the other four clans survive in times of
great need.

Summary:

     At the start of Midnight, Brambleclaw (a ThunderClan warrior) has a dream
in which his StarClan ancestors instruct him to go see what Midnight has to
say. Meanwhile, a medicine cat has a vision of great disaster. Soon, an epic
quest begins to save the clans. Four cats are called upon to use their
courage, skills and wits to survive and save their clans. As their journey
takes them to places that have only been dreamed of, they encounter a guide,
and try to unravel the mysterious prophecy from StarClan: "Darkness, Air,
Water, and Sky will come together ... And shake the forest to its roots."


Critique and Analysis:

First of all, the title of this book is significant. Midnight is the name of a character the cats meet near the end of their long journey. Midnight is also when one day ends and another begins, a time of transition; the StarClan’s prophecy foretells a great transition for the warrior clans, as an outside force threatens society as they know it. I think the most important part of the plot is the journey. One warrior from each clan is called to join the quest to understand the prophecy. Two other cats join the foursome. As they face obstacles, defend themselves from attack and overcome other problems, the clowder (the collective term for a group of cats) changes from a bunch of individual cats who just happen to be travelling together into more of a team. Although the journey takes place beyond the forest where the clans live, Hunter effectively uses two narrative points-of-view to ensure the reader is kept up-to-date on what is happening in the forest while Brambleclaw and his fellow-travellers are on their quest. She tells the story of the journey from Brambleclaw’s point-of-view. Leafpaw, a medicine cat apprentice, is the voice telling the reader what is going on back in the forest. Using two separate voices to tell parallel stories taking place in two distinct settings makes it easy for the reader to follow the changes in the narrative point-of-view. Even though it was somewhat interesting to think about the title, the plot, the setting and the characters, for me the most interesting part of the book was to learn what cats might think of everyday objects. For example, cats think of humans as “Twolegs”, consider housecats as pampered “Kittypets”, and fear the giant Monster cats on the Thunderpath (which are the vehicles and roads we take for granted). I really like cats. And I find Hunter’s personification of the warrior cats intriguing. Add in the cliff-hanger ending to “Warriors: Midnight” and I feel compelled to read the next book in this series.

3 comments:

  1. Hi Kellan,
    When I read your book review all I could say was WOW. What you wrote in your critique paragraph helped the reader understand the meaningfulness behind the book.

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  2. I really like your summary it is short and gripping.

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  3. Amazing Review! I thought you made an insightful critique paragraph. It was crisp, but descriptive. I can't wait to see your critiques in term 2! I loved it :)
    -Maanasa

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