Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke
Publication: March 22nd 2016 by Dial Books
Format: Hardback Pages: 247
Every story needs a hero.
Every story needs a villain.
Every story needs a secret.
Wink is the odd, mysterious neighbor girl, wild red hair and freckles. Poppy is the blond bully and the beautiful, manipulative high school queen bee. Midnight is the sweet, uncertain boy caught between them. Wink. Poppy. Midnight. Two girls. One boy. Three voices that burst onto the page in short, sharp, bewitching chapters, and spiral swiftly and inexorably toward something terrible or tricky or tremendous.
What really happened?
Someone is lying. – Goodreads
I am so completely mind-boggled right now. I finished Wink Poppy Midnight within two hours of picking it up because I knew it would be difficult to figure out what was going on if I left it. The prose, although generally beautiful, required attention because you’d easily find yourself lost if your mind wandered off somewhere else (like on the revision you should be doing for the exam you have in three days).
The story is split into three perspectives (Wink, Poppy, and Midnight, if you’re wondering). They’re all unreliable. I was really rooting on Poppy being a narcissistic sociopath for brownie points, but her character ended up being a let-down.
Wink was insufferable. She was a full-time resident of La La Land, and although her personality was quirky and cute at times, there were moments where I wanted to throw a brick at her face because analogising a situation where a girl has gone missing with a fairytale is bloody ridiculous. She was like a Luna Lovegood on crack.
I wanted to like Midnight but, by the end of the story, I was wondering what the actual point of his character was. His comparisons between Poppy and Wink were annoying, and they made me cringe. I tried to reason with this by telling myself Poppy was the first girl he’d been with so it would perhaps be natural for him to compare to her but nope, it still infuriated me. His inability to make his damn mind up got on my nerves too.
Also, Midnight? Leaf? Wink? Okay, maybe Wink but Midnight and Leaf… really?
Regarding the writing style, it was, for the most part, a very well-written book. I didn’t have any issues with it on the first read but after a brief skim through later (memory needed refreshing), I noticed things that some readers might pick up on the first read, and it might turn them off the book. For example, the (VERY) frequent repetition: ‘Not again. Not again, not again, not again, not again.’ Why?
In hindsight, I’m probably a blind reader or something to have missed that and not been bothered by it. Like jheeze, someone’s taken a leaf out of Gertrude Stein’s book. Speaking of references to other books, Wink Poppy Midnight has a lot of those. (I liked that.)
After all this complaining, my rating for Wink Poppy Midnight is 3 stars. It wasn’t terrible after all; I did finish it very quickly, and I did find myself intrigued enough to keep turning the pages. Oh and the cover was purty.