Memories of Midnight
First edition cover
|Media type||Print (Hardcover & paperback)|
|Preceded by||The Sands of Time|
|Followed by||The Doomsday Conspiracy|
The plot of Memories of Midnight takes off from the ending of The Other Side of Midnight, where Catherine Douglas is recovering in a convent. The world thinks that she has been killed by her husband Larry Douglas and his mistress Noelle Page, except Constantin Demiris, known as Costa. But Catherine wants to discover herself and know who she is. The only thing she knows is that her name is Catherine Alexander. She requests to see the world outside the convent in order to reveal her past. This request is granted by the Sister of the convent, but only after getting the approval from their mentor Constantin Demiris.
It is there in Greece that she realizes that her husband and his mistress tried to kill her. She remembers them trying to drown her and this becomes a recurring dream. When she tells all this to Costa, he is a bit angry as he didn’t want her uncovering her past as she is the last link to the case in which Larry and Noelle were wrongly accused of killing her and sentenced to death. So he sends her off to London to work in one of his various offices.
At this point in time, Constantin Demiris seems like a benefactor to Catherine as she has no knowledge of what Constantin Demiris has planned for her.
Trouble starts brewing when Frederick Stavros begin to feel guilty for sending Larry and Noelle to their death as he was their lawyer and they were all tricked into pleading guilty by Napoleon Chotas. He dies shortly after confiding this news to a priest who after his death tells this news to an employee working in the office of Spyros Lambrou, the brother of Costa’s wife Melina. This news reaches Spyros Lambrou who uses this news to destroy Costa as Costa had maltreated his wife, Spyros’ sister.
This is when Napoleon Chotas starts fearing for his own life. He leaves a package with a prosecuting attorney, Peter Demonides, and sends a tape referring to this to Costa. The next day Chotas’ house is burned down. He seemingly dies and the package is delivered to Costa, rather than the authorities by Peter, who starts working for him. Meanwhile, Catherine finds a good friend in Kirk Reynolds who is in love with her and wants to marry her although Catherine is a bit reluctant. She confides in him that her husband and his mistress attempted to kill her and were executed for it. Kirk reassures her by saying that from the little he knows about Greek law he is confident that their law doesn’t sentence anyone to death on account of attempted murder. Still, he will make sure by asking one of his acquaintance, Peter Demonides. Within a day of relating Catherine's story to Peter, he dies.
In the meantime, Spyros tries to destroy Costa by narrating this incident to a drug dealer, Tony Rizzoli and advices him to trick Costa into taking one of his drug shipments to USA. But Constantin Demiris kills Tony and destroys his shipment and then threatens Spyros by telling him that he will destroy him but will first take care of his sister. When Spyros tells this to Melina, she assures him by saying that she can take care of herself. Her brother’s house is attacked but he and his wife survive the attack. This is when she becomes confident that Costa wants to destroy them. Hence, she kills herself and fakes it in such a way that it seems that Constantin Demiris has murdered her. Meanwhile, Costa has ordered the killing of Catherine Alexander.
Costa gets arrested for the murder of his wife. The only one who can save him is Sypros Lambrou, who can give an alibi for the time of the murder but, won’t do so as he detests Constantin Demiris and wants him dead. This is when Napoleon Chotas makes a dramatic reappearance, crippled and in a wheel-chair, after mysteriously surviving the fire, which burned his house. He fights the case of Constantine Demiris. He convinces Spyros into giving testimony for Costa, arguing that instead of having him dead it will be better if he forces him to live in poverty. This will be achieved by Costa transferring all the assets of his company to Spyros in return for SPyros' testimony. On the other hand Costa and Chotas have already planned that the assets of Costa’s company will first be shifted to a firm owned by Napoleon Chotas himself, so that Spyros will get nothing.
Catherine goes into psychoanalysis but in turn falls in love with the doctor Alan Hamilton who also falls in love with her. This is when 3 men arrive in London to study the operation taking place there and they all seem pretty weird and she has a bad feeling about them but it is not until she is to be killed that she realizes that it is not the 3 men but the office boy who came along with them who has come to kill her. He tries to kill her by locking and tying her up in the basement and turning up the thermostat of the boiler which will explode when it reaches 400 degree Celsius but she manages to survive by hiding in the bomb shelter. She comes to know the truth about Costa and also the fact that he was convicted. She marries Alan.
Constantin Demiris is being tried for a murder he didn’t commit but, on the last day of the gruesome 10 day trial, Spyros Lambrou testifies, setting Constantin Demiris free. Afterwards, on the way to Napoleon’s home, Napoleon confide in Costa that even he liked Noelle Page though he still helped him in killing her. He starts driving faster and tells him that he has donated all the assets of his company to the convent, since he has no wish of being alive after what Costa did to him. Finally, he drives the car over the cliff down the steep mountainside, killing both Constantin Demiris and himself.
...the car tumbling end over end until finally at the bottom, it crashed into the sea. There was a tremendous explosion, and then a deep silence. It was over. (quoted from the book Memories of Midnight by Sidney Sheldon)
In 1991 the book was adapted for television as a two part miniseries starring Omar Sharif as Constantin Demiris and Jane Seymour as Catherine Alexander. The miniseries follows the events of the book very closely. However, the connection with the preceding book (The Other Side of Midnight), which had been turned into a 1977 motion picture was lost as the story was placed in the (then) modern world, rather than immediately post-WWII. Also, the characters of Noelle and Larry are not explored at all, beyond the fact that their affair and attempt to murder Catharine are the trigger for the story's events.
- "Memories of Midnight". fantasticfiction.co.uk.
The Sands of Time
|Sidney Sheldon Novels
The Doomsday Conspiracy