I recently read The Fallen Children, which was based on The Midwich Cuckoos. I found the basic plot about aliens impregnating women, which then gave birth to freaky children, and wanted to see how much was original content.
The Midwich Cuckoos is a very short book, only 219 pages, so I thought I’d be able fly through it.
From the blurb:
In the sleepy English village of Midwich, a mysterious silver object appears and all the inhabitants fall unconscious. A day later the object is gone and everyone weakens unharmed – except that all the women in the village are discovered to be pregnant.
The resultant children of Midwich do not belong to their parents; all are blond, all are golden-eyed. They grow up too fast and their minds exhibit frightening abilities that give them control over others. This brings them into conflict with the villagers just as a chilling realisation dawns on the world outside.
Richard Gayford and his wife Janet are returning from a night away in London, and find that their village has been quarantined from the rest of the world. A dome encases Midwich, and renders unconscious any person or creature who attempts to enter. The forcefield seems to emanate from a silver UFO at the centre of Midwich.
The townspeople within are unconscious for a full day when the UFO and barrier disappear.
Military Intelligence, lead by Richard’s old friend Colonel Bernard Westcott, have managed to keep the press away from the area.
After the event, the town tries to get on with normal life, but then they discover that all of the women of childbearing age are with child.
The children when they are born demonstrate scarily advanced intelligence, and seem to have a hive mind. The people of Midwich have to decide if they pose a threat to humankind, and how to stop them…
I loved the storyline in this book, but I really didn’t like the writing style. I felt like I didn’t get to know any of the characters, the dialogue was very formal, and the ending was very abrupt. It took me a relatively long time to read, the writing felt quite stilted, so I had to keep going back over bits, to check what was happening.
Overall I have it 3/5 stars, because it was highly original, but again, I just didn’t like the author’s style.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.