Monday, July 16, 2007
The Middle of the story
The second story of a trilogy, some times called the "Empire" story for the greatest and most famous middle stories of any trilogy ever, can be and usually is a bit less exciting than the opening and closing and usually involve a whole lot of story. It is the book that always drives the action across the bridge from the dramatic opening into the land of the heart-pounding ending. It is, in effect, the boring story, the story that doesn't really build up or conclude because, well, that is just not what is was born to do. The second story heightens the tension, tightens the thumb screws, cranks up the voltage so that the conclusion hits you that much harder.
So here we have Day Watch, the second in the brilliant Night Watch trilogy from Russia which began with Night Watch and will conclude with Twilight Watch. The story is a well known one: The eternal struggle between good and evil, light and darkness, day and night. The forces of the light, defenders of humanity and all things good, run the Night Watch. On the other end is (you guessed it) the Day Watch, the defenders of darkness, and mortal enemies of the Day Watch. Many years ago these two groups forged a treaty that stated that neither of these groups could use their powers to influence the course of humanity without an equal use of power from the opposing side. So the Watches were formed to keep an eye on one another.
No that you have the general idea of how the story goes, the second book, Day Watch, follows members of the Day Watch, or the followers of darkness, as they conspire against the light ones in a massive game of chess to ultimately defeat the forces of light in the biggest war in a thousand years. Of course, the Night Watch is conspiring to accomplish the same thing. Each side makes their moves and gets all of their important players into position for the final push for victory. And this, of course, is why it is the second book. The book is all building, posturing, and moving pieces into place for the big showdown. And it does not dissapoint. The next book, Twilight Watch, finishes the saga, with what I am sure will be a huge flourish.
It should be noted, also, that the books are also movies, Day Watch just having left theaters in late June. Both movies, Night Watch and Day Watch, are subtitled from Russian and for all of those Sci Fi junkies out there showcases some of the most innovative effects and cinematography this side of lucasfilm.