Title: Rayne and Delilah’s Midnite Matinee
Author: Jeff Zentner
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Release Date: February 26, 2019
A contemporary novel about two best friends who must make tough decisions about their futures–and the TV show they host–in their senior year of high school.
Every Friday night, best friends Delia and Josie become Rayne Ravenscroft and Delilah Darkwood, hosts of the campy creature feature show Midnite Matinee on the local cable station TV Six.
But with the end of senior year quickly approaching, the girls face tough decisions about their futures. Josie has been dreading graduation, as she tries to decide whether to leave for a big university and chase her dream career in mainstream TV. And Lawson, one of the show’s guest performers, a talented MMA fighter with weaknesses for pancakes, fantasy novels, and Josie, is making her tough decision even harder.
Scary movies are the last connection Delia has to her dad, who abandoned the family years ago. If Midnite Matinee becomes a hit, maybe he’ll see it and want to be a part of her life again. And maybe Josie will stay with the show instead of leaving her behind, too.
As the tug-of-war between growing up and growing apart tests the bonds of their friendship, Josie and Delia start to realize that an uncertain future can be both monstrous…and momentous.
This was an original story about two girls who host a TV show on public access television. I loved that they were able to get a head start on their careers by creating their own show while they were still in high school. Josie (aka Rayne) pursues her dream of having her own TV show. Delia (aka Delilah) follows her passion of horror movies to get her estranged father to notice her.
I really liked how casual the dialogue was in the story. There were many funny exchanges. They were so funny because of the ordinary circumstances. The jokes reminded me of jokes that you would have with a friend, but when you try to explain it to someone else later, they don’t understand and you have to say “you had to be there.” The comedy was situational and in the moment.
I wish the story was a little more diverse. There is some mental health discussion, because Delia and her parents all experience depression. It even gets so bad for her father that he leaves their family. It is so important to have representation of mental health issues in stories. However, I would have loved it if there was some more diversity of cultural or gender identities.
This was a cute original story.
What to read next:
Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner
Have you read Rayne and Delilah’s Midnite Matinee? What did you think of it?