Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Past Midnight (Past Midnight #1) by Mara Purnhagen

Title: Past Midnight
Author: Mara Purnhagen
Part of Series or Standalone: First book in series
Published: September 1, 2010
Publisher:  Harlequin Teen


Charlotte Silver and her family don’t stay in one place for long because her parents are ghost hunters.  Instead of proving ghosts are real, her parents try to prove that ghosts are NOT real.  They are trying to prove that it’s residual energy that is left behind places where they’ve lived or have emotional connections to.
Charlotte and her family are spending the summer in Charleston, South Carolina so her parents can make a documentary about old hotels and restaurants that are supposed to be haunted.  Charlotte’s sister, Annalise, a college student, is helping as well.  Charlotte feels inferior to her sister because she’s everything she’s not.  Annalise is short, beautiful, and all that most people talk about when both of them are around.  She also feels inferior because Annalise is used as the “chum”, someone used to try to lure out ghosts.  Some people believe that the person needs to be beautiful.  Her parents always ask Annalise to and she is always stuck doing something in the background.
All of them go to the Courtyard Café to investigate a haunting.  It doesn’t go as it usually does.  Annalise claims that she felt overwhelming sadness and freaks out.  Charlotte convinces her to go in the restaurant again to see if they can figure out why it happened.  Annalise feels the sensation once again.  This causes her to get her parents to agree to three things.  One of them is to live in one place for a year for Charlotte because it’s her senior year.  To Charlotte’s luck, the parents agree and also agree that they can live in a new house instead of an old Victorian house like usual.
Charlotte is actually looking forward to it because she never got to feel like she could leave a mark on a place because she was never around long enough to have best friends or join a team or club at her past schools.  She meets Avery when loading stuff into their new house.  Avery also has a pet dog with her named Dante, which immediately starts to growl at her.  Charlotte says to herself that she hates that dog and learns later that the dog is sick.  Could this be a coincidence?  Apparently, it’s not.  Something is someone won’t leave her alone.  Will she find out why  she’s being paranormally stalked?  Will she ever understand the dreams she’s been having?
I didn’t think I’d like this book a lot, but I really enjoyed reading this.  There were times when I guessed what was going on with the story and was right for the most part.  There was something that happened that I never thought happened.  I really felt bad for Jared.  The whole school is against him.  There are several times that he talks to Charlotte.  At times, I wanted to shake her and tell her to talk more to him.  She doesn’t though because of Avery.  Right away, you can tell she’s hiding something.  I didn’t hate Avery for it, but I didn’t like how she would act about James.  There’s always more to a story than meets the eye.  I loved reading this and finding out what happened.  Can’t wait to read the next book!

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