A story where edge-of-your-seat horror meets post-apocalyptic thriller, perfect for fans of Lois Lowry and The Maze Runner

Night is coming.

On Marin’s island, sunrise doesn’t come every twenty-four hours–it comes every twenty-eight years. Each sunset, the townspeople sail to the south, where they wait out the long Night. None of the adults will tell Marin, Kana, or their friend Line exactly what happens when they leave the island, but when the three are accidentally left behind in the gathering dusk, they learn the truth: at Night, their town belongs to others, and those others want them gone.

Fleeing through the now-alien landscape that used to be their home, the three confront shocking transformations and uncomfortable truths about themselves.  They are challenged to trust one another or perish. Marin, Kana, and Line must find their way off the island . . . before the Night finds them.

My Thoughts:


*Review copy received from publisher in exchange for review. This doesn’t affect my review or opinion*

What an eerie read! Nightfall had me on the edge of my seat the whole time, eagerly anticipating what was coming next. I rarely read novels intended to scare, so I had no idea what to expect from Nightfall and I was pleased with the outcome. I had a few issues, but I still definitely recommend it.

Every 14 years, the sun sets and Night comes. All the people who inhabit the island of Bliss flee to the Desert Lands for the next 14 years while their island is shrouded in darkness. It has been a rule ever since the first people found the island: if you stay after Nightfall, you’re dead.

As I said before, I rarely read horror novels. The main reason I was interested in Nightfall was because of the (brilliant) premise. An island where the sun only sets every 14 years? How cool is that?! I had so many questions when reading the description. How will the kids survive? What is the “other” that wants them gone? What’s going to happen? I was intrigued by all the possible ways that this story could play out.

Since Marin, Kana and Line are all 14 years old, this year is their first experience with Night. They all plan to leave with their families, but are accidentally left behind and must fend for themselves. I was fascinated by the survival aspect of this book. I couldn’t wait to see how the kids would survive on the dangerous island that Bliss has become, since everyone else has left. There is very little equipment and supplies, and the 3 protagonists are being hunted by something unknown.

I really liked the 3 main characters- Marin and her twin brother Kana, as well as their friend Line. They are all left on the island accidentally, and must protect themselves against the outside dangers. They have to be strong if they want to survive. I loved their friendship! YA is saturated with romance novels, so I thought the lack of romance in Nightfall was a fantastic break from all the romance I’ve been reading lately. YA really does need more novels about good male-female friendships.

I liked Marin, Kana and Line a lot. Besides trying to survive and escape Bliss, they all have their own burdens and problems they are trying to resolve. They were all wonderful characters, but my favorite was probably Kana. I admired his inner strength, and willingness to make sacrifices. I thought he was the most interesting person overall.

With such a high-stakes concept (literally life or death!), I expected an action-packed read, and an intense climax. I liked how full of action the novel was throughout, but the climax was very disappointing. The big plot twist didn’t seem important or shocking to me. It just seemed strange, like it was pulled from nowhere.

There are also a lot of unanswered questions. Goodreads is telling me that this is a standalone novel (hopefully not true!), which is disappointing. There is so much that hasn’t been explained yet, or just doesn’t make sense. I can’t discuss much of it without falling into spoiler territory, but other things–like one of the important plot elements–just don’t make sense to me. For example, how is it that night only comes every 14 years on the island of Bliss, yet the inhabitants can take a boat ride to the Desert Lands, where the sun sets and rises every 24 hours like normal? Maybe it was explained in the book and I missed it, but that just doesn’t make sense.

Still, there was a lot to like about Nightfall, and it was a very entertaining read. It was incredibly spooky, and has a fantastic cast of characters. Despite some issues, I still think that Nightfall is well worth reading, and I would be more than interested in reading a sequel. 3/5 stars!

3 Comments on {Review} Nightfall by Jake Halpern and Peter Kujawinski

  1. Ellie @ Spellbound
    August 27, 2015 at 5:35 am (2 years ago)

    This one sounds really interesting! The unanswered questions would probably drive me crazy, but I’ll still have to give this a try. Anything centered on friendship rather than romance is fine by me. Great review!
    Ellie @ Spellbound recently posted…Today’s QuoteMy Profile

  2. Diana
    August 29, 2015 at 3:34 pm (2 years ago)

    I saw this book on Netgalley and I agree, the premise is what pulled me in too. I have yet to read it but I thought it sounded sooooo interesting. I’m glad you like it because now it encourages me to want to read it sooner 🙂
    Diana recently posted…Book Review: DescentMy Profile

  3. Olivia Roach
    September 14, 2015 at 2:03 pm (2 years ago)

    I have heard a little bit about this book, but not so much. I think it is interesting to read a horror when you often don’t – likewise my reading taste is the same. I don’t read much horror at all. I like the idea of it, but it seems like there isn’t really too much to it.
    Olivia Roach recently posted…My Hoarding Catastrophe – Anticipated Reads!My Profile


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