cover image The Midnight Twins

The Midnight Twins

Jacquelyn Mitchard, . . Razorbill, $16.99 (235pp) ISBN 978-1-59514-160-6

Experimenting with genre, Mitchard (The Deep End of the Ocean; All We Know of Heaven , Reviews, May 26) proffers the first of a projected trilogy about identical twins Mallory and Meredith, born two minutes apart—one on New Year's Eve, the other on New Year's Day. The two are perfect opposites, mirrors of each other; they share each other's dreams and feel each other's thoughts—until their 13th birthday, when they nearly die in a terrible fire that has been deliberately set. The fire leaves one of them scarred—they are no longer physically identical—and both of them endowed with psychic powers: one can see the future, the other far into the past. However familiar some of these elements, Mitchard uses them to conjure genuine horror in the form of a villain who begins by torturing neighborhood pets and graduates to murdering young women. The plot moves quickly, propelled by the mysteries of the sisters' relationship. Members of the target audience will be particularly vulnerable to the twins' heightened intimacy and extra-sensitive to any possibility of rupture; the girls' supernatural knowledge is a delicious bonus. Ages 12–up. (July)