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Book Review: “Midnight A Gangster Love Story” by Sister Souljah

21 Feb

midnight

Sister Souljah is a talented writer and the idea of writing a novel based on a character (Midnight) from her best-seller “The Coldest Winter Ever” sounds like a great idea. However, there are a few things that prevent this novel from being great. One thing is that it’s just too long. There are lots of really great books that are hundreds and hundreds of pages long, but what makes  “Midnight: A Gangster Love Story” different is that the ending is incredibly unsatisfying. A book of this length should have taken readers right up to the beginning of Midnight’s emergence in “The Coldest Winter Ever” or at least left the readers off on a point where we feel satisfied about where life is generally headed for this character. I really didn’t like the cliffhanger treatment in this at all. I also didn’t like the fact that there are pictures in the book. I don’t need pictures. Seriously.

Perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of the book is looking at Black America through the eyes of an African Muslim. There’s definitely some valid criticism of the Black community in this novel, but it’s a bit extreme. There’s not one Black American female who is even remotely sane. But then again, coming from the perspective of an adolescent boy, that just might appear to be the case. The writing was good, but I feel like this could have been a much more concise story with a much better ending.  I’m glad I checked this out at the library instead of buying it.

P.S. Check me out on Good Reads!

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21 Comments

Posted by on February 21, 2009 in Love, Reading, Religion/Spirituality, Reviews

 

21 responses to “Book Review: “Midnight A Gangster Love Story” by Sister Souljah

  1. Ginny

    March 20, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Greetings, I also read this book… I have written 2 reviews on it at http://www.ginnysthoughts.com. I’d like your feedback, if you’d not mind. Thanks.

     
  2. Mahagoni

    May 28, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    I wanted to read this book because I thought that Winter and Midnight eventually would reunite and I wanted to see what would come of it. However midway through the book I realized that Winter would never appear in this book because it was taking tooooo loooong to get to that point. I also noticed some inconsistencies with this book and “The Coldest Winter Ever”. Like the little sister, her name was Effe in “The Coldest Winter Ever” and in this book her name is Naja. Also Midnight went to jail when he was 14 for killing someone who malested his sister and while he was in jail his mother went to jail for smuggling drugs, which was not the case in this book. Towards the end of the book I began to enjoy the love that Midnight had for Akemi and there relationship until the book ended abruptly. I hope she is planning on writing a senquel to this book and she needs to find some kind of way tie in Midnights relationship with Akemi and how he ended up meeting Vega and working for him and wrap up the series.

     
  3. loveisdope

    May 28, 2009 at 10:19 pm

    It was DEFINITELY too long! I will not be checking for the sequel to this book because this one was so poorly executed in terms of reader satisfaction. I don’t recall the name of Midnight’s little sis in TCWE, but this book ends RIGHT before Midnight’s actions that cause him to be put in jail. That’s one of the reasons why I wasn’t feeling it. This book was unsatisfying as a stand-alone book AND as a prequel to TCWE. I will say though that at the end of TCWE Midnight is with an Asian woman (presumably Akemi) at the funeral, so in a way, we do know that they end up together eventually.

     
  4. Moneika

    June 29, 2009 at 9:49 am

    I TOO WAS DISAPOINTED WITH THE BOOK. EVEN THOUGH I READ THE WHOLE THING I WAS WAITING FOR THE TIE TO TCWE AND IT NEVER HAPPENED. THE BOOK WAS EXTREMELY LONG. I DID NOT EXPECT HER TO PUT THE WHOLE STORY OF TCWE IN THE BOOK BUT COME ON THAT IS WHAT HAD DRAWN US TO MIDNIGHT,

     
  5. Shelly

    July 1, 2009 at 10:41 am

    i havent been able to finissh the book because its tooo long and tooo boring…
    it was just a waste…
    i really thought it would be better

     
  6. CAROLINE

    July 9, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    The book was not what I was expecting like many i was hoping it will link to “the coldest winter ever” not even once was a character from tcwe showed up and i was kinda disappointed. The book itself was a good book, it has a lot of valuable lesson which we give us another outlook on the way we live and the beliefs we have in America. IT WAS TOO MUCH WISDOM COMING FROM A 14 YR OLD, THAT’S ODD AND MADE THE STORY VERY HARD TO BELIEVE. I DID ENJOY LEARNING ABOUT THE MUSLIM CULTURE AND BELIEFS AS WELL AS THE JAPANESE ONE, HOWEVER I DID NOT LIKE THE WAY SISTER SOULJAH MADE MIDNIGHT THINK ABOUT AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN OR JUST AMERICAN WOMAN IN GENERAL. IT KINDA MADE ME FEEL JUST A LITTLE BIT LESS VALUABLE AT LEAST WHILE READING THE BOOK LOL. I REALLY LIKED THE CHARACTER BANGS, I WAS HOPING SHE MADE HIM CHANGE HIS MIND ABOUT THE WAY HE THOUGH ABOUT AMERICAN WOMEN AND BE WITH HER, BUT IT DID NOT HAPPEN SO I WAS LIKE “OMG THATS WACK” LOL.

     
  7. Devon

    August 28, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    I actually really enjoyed reading this story. I got the feeling reading “TCWE” and “Midnight” that Sister Souljah is trying to prove a point that you are a product of your environment. I hope she is telling these stories to encourage people to better them self’s. I read “TCWE” and also was expecting to be taken to the point where he at least gets out of jail. I honestly broke down crying while reading this book, all the while knowing what ends up happening to his family. His entire purpose in life was to keep his family safe. We know after reading “TCWE” that he fails. I am from the South, and have been one of those very fortunate people that were not raised in conditions some of these characters were brought up in. These books have opened my eyes to a lot of things. I do hope she writes another story. I have so many questions that weren’t answered. Hopefully she is in the middle of writing us another one so that we can get more closure on this story. I enjoyed this book, and I would recommend reading it, but read “The Coldest Winter Ever” first.

     
  8. Sonji

    August 28, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    Loved the book it was an oppurtunity to see brooklyn through the eyes of a young muslim, male growing up… there is a code of honor that is continuously tested and I think S.Souljah raised the bar challenging her readers to rethink how they move their chess pieces… this book reminded me of the matrix…. now that you know which pill do you take? S

     
  9. robin deutsche

    October 12, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    sister souljah is an exceptional writer, i enjoyed the book even though it started a little slow..it’s very interesting to learn about different cultures and religions, however, midnight’s take on life at such an early age and coming from such a privileged background was unbelievable..i realize that the book was fiction, but when i read fiction i like to read it with a sense that things could really happen…i mean come on the boy was only seven when he came to the us..

     
  10. vee

    October 29, 2009 at 7:21 am

    WOW ! THANK YOU WE REALLY NEED TO TAKE A CLOSER LOOK WITHIN OURSELVES . TO SEE JUST HOW OTHER PEOPLE FROM DISTANT LANDS SEE WHAT WE ARE AFRAID TO ADMITT . OMG AWESOME AGAIN THANK YOU BLESSINGS ……..

     
  11. Monique

    November 9, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    I too read the book and was sadly dissapointed. i tried to root for the author since i was such a big fan of the first novel but coming from an Islamic background myself and actually being from West Africa, i must say a lot of the information was inaccurate. i do however realize that this is fiction and appreciate the idea. In addition i would have like to see some tie to tcwe and i also noted the inconsistancies in the stories. I was sadly not satisied but would definatly read a third part in hope that it all ties in.

     
  12. JLowery

    December 22, 2009 at 10:45 am

    All of you people are crazy. I understand that this book is supposed to be a prequel to TCWE…I have never read this book. This is the first from Sistah Souljah that have ever read. This book alone is a beautiful depiction of what Gangstar Love and Thug Passion should be. A beautiful depiction of all that is woman and how our love and Presence can cause a man of character and values to be willing to go to Sheol in order to protect our honor and state of being. I would advise everyone to look at this book separately for what it is. The ending was supposed to make you want more. More Midnight (my dream), more Akemi, and possibly for you to imagine based on what you know of Midnight what lengths he would go to in order to reunite with the love of his life. I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!!!!

    ExhalE

     
  13. Ms. St. Louis

    July 20, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    When I got this book I couldn’t wait to curl up in bed and devour it; however, I was very disappointed with this book. I did enjoy reading about the different cultures, but it was offensive at the same time, now I wonder if all Africans are looking at us African-American women in that way. I was also hoping to at least get one chapter of Winter. I also did not like the ending. Even though I was disappointed I am still waiting to see what happens when he goes to meet Akemi.

     
  14. devilish smilez

    January 23, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    i read the book &&i agree that is was long but because it was such a great book i didnt really realize.i looked at the page count&&almost didnt read but im glad i did. i love the way she portrays midnight and his family. i cant wait to see how she ties it in w/ TCWE. the ending hurt my feelingsa bit. but i am kind of glad that she held out because thats just gona make the sequel so much better.! CANT WAIT TO READ IT. im already on the waiting list.

     
  15. Iris sims

    March 8, 2011 at 12:14 am

    i wus kinda upset with this because i thought i wld bee more xciting nd interesting than it actually wus i likeed tha character bangs but tcwe was deffinatelyy a moreeee bettter story nd i understood why midnight did what he did in tcwe it clearer to me. however i also likeed that he still haad a wonderful relationship with amkel i think that was cute but i would have never guessed that midnight was muslim and i think its great tht he really rrespects women=) but still kind of disappointed it was boring im nt even gunna lie. TCWE was tha hottest.!!!!!!!!

     
  16. Thugz Angel

    May 20, 2011 at 1:14 am

    I’m not going to write what everyone else did…Something else needs to be put to light. Someone needs to put it in A SISTAH’S Life. With that said here it is…I was pissed about the depiction of American women. I AM ONE OF THEM & I am proud of it. So let me give you an example pay attention. I became pregnant with my son at 16, had my second child at 19, my third at 22 and my fourth at 24! Yeah I’m the statistic that you speak of. The obdometer breaker, the whore, tramp, slut, project chick, hoodrat let you define it! Even though you don’t know me this is what you labeled me because you didn’t say some, you made it clear you were referring to all! But this statistic has worked since the age of 15, graduated from high school working not one but two jobs. I didn’t put my son on my mother I moved into my own spot and RAISED HIM! I’ve been with the same man since I was 19 I’m 35 now. Yes we are married and yes he was a THUG/Gangsta. What’s real & not a fairy tale is that we are both a statistic & not S@*t in your eyes & all 4 our children are on the Honor Roll! Our son 17 has never been in trouble with the law, is taking his ACT’s and throws the ball like a pro, but we teach him to look at other aspects in life that’s why he is going to major in Engineering. My 15 year old daughter is still a virgin so you don’t have to look for a ten year old this way to find a virgin. She attends a performing art school and has dreams of being a doctor, the brain to do it too. My 13 year old daughter is still a virgin runs track, praise dances and really just wants to be a good mother someday and faithful wife. And then there is my ten year old. She plays Basketball better than the boys and has been saying she is going to the University of Texas Since she was Five. Back then it was the orange and white team as she would say. But says if she can’t play ball she wants to work for GOD! My husband was a shoot’em up, crack dealing, gun totting thug. But he changed his life, proposed and made us right in God’s eye’s. He’s worked a 9-5 for 13 years. Wow! Can you believe it SISTAH? A Whore & a Gansta raising a strong minded SON who respects women honors his mother & father. 3 daughters that are African American and still virgins, knows what their worth and power is and not giving it away to no one! We are the statistic that you speak of! We are in the heart of the hood where they shoot everyday, sell dope at our front door and WE ARE MAKING IT! So before you spill out your stereotypes and criticism do your damn research. I really had to laugh reading your book. Because there are so many african muslim men here that’s nothing like your Midnight. I can’t go in the corner store without one of them trying to spit game at my daughter not once coming to get permission from her father. Looking down on us like they so much better…But it was the African that was enslaved and lost the language, heritage and culture to pass along! Didn’t keep the culture not even in secret! So you blame us cause our ancestors became trapped in this land and it was the AFRICAN who first submitted and bowed down to America’s ways! Who in the hood can go back when we barely have enough to survive? And why would we go back? When you have depicted how the Africans see us in their eyes. To them and to you WE WILL ALWAYS BE SOME NO GOOD THUGS AND WHORES. ONE!

    Thugz Angel

     
  17. Katessa Hughes

    June 26, 2011 at 7:53 am

    Thugz Angel, you are tha bomb. I am proud of you and your King. We all make mistakes, the goal is to learn from them so that we can do what you are doing and that is to make a better tomorrow for our children. I hated the plot of the book too. I liked Bang’s character though. She reminds me so much of me: crazy but loving. The way that she cares for her ill grandmother bought tears to my eyes. Finally to all of my African queens, keep the faith.

     
  18. Katessa Hughes

    June 27, 2011 at 8:05 am

    Something else crossed my mind as I struggled to finish this book, only because I paid money for it. Why was it okay for Akemi to make sexual advances. i noticed that whenever they were together she came on to him strong, yet she was never judged, criticized, or called a whore. Unfortunately, the black girls from the neighborhood were considered to be worthless whores for doing the same thing. I was wondering whether or not I was the only person who had a problem with that. It appears that the black girls in the neighborhood are not allowed to purse love or affection when the japanese girl is. Is it just me or was there a double standard in this novel?

     
  19. Thugz Angel

    August 4, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Thanks Katessa. She just really ticked me off! But you know what it’s cool because I just wrote a book too. It’s called Monectke (monique) and I finished the sequel A Paige in my Book. A lot of people compare my book to The coldest Winter ever. But the difference is Winter was a hoe, Monectke is a G. And the sequel is what it is supposed to be A SEQUEL. I just don’t have any help to get it out there. But I’m not giving up. My dream is to be the #1 author in the country. I will get that spot! Thanks for the love Thugz Angel.

     
  20. aliya

    August 18, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    First off Midnight, a gangsta love story is not a sequel to tcwe. It is a prequel. Has nuthin to do with the other book. This book is about MIDNIGHT. && yes, there is a part 2 out right now. Midnight, && the meaning of luv. It mentions santiaga && it talks about midnight goin to get his wife Akemi back. But it does not talk about winter or why midnight really was in jail. Its his Story. I loved the book. All 3 of them.

     

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