Past Midnight by Mara Purnhagen
Series: Past Midnight # 1
Description: I don't believe in ghosts. Unfortunately, they believe in me. Let me set the record straight. My name is Charlotte Silver and I'm not one of those paranormal-obsessed freaks you see on TV...no, those would be my parents, who have their own ghost-hunting reality show. And while I'm usually roped into the behind-the-scenes work, it turns out that I haven't gone unnoticed. Something happened on my parents' research trip in Charlestown - and now I'm being stalked by some truly frightening other beings. Trying to fit into a new school and keeping my parents' creepy occupation a secret from my friends -and potential boyfriends- is hard enough without having angry spirits whispering in my ear. All I ever wanted was to be normal, but with the ghosts of my past and present colliding, now I just want to make it out of high school alive..
Review: I'm not sure what my first impression of this book was. When I read the back, I thought it sounded different, and not like something I'd pick up at Borders or the library, mainly because I'm not a big fan of ghosts. For instance, I couldn't read this book at night, by myself. It was always in the light, with another being in the room. I'm know, I'm such a baby, but like I said, not a big fan of ghosts. With that in mind, Past Midnight was really enjoyable, and I'm glad I didn't put it off.
Past Midnight is about this girl named Charlotte, who just wishes for a stable home and her first kiss. You see, her parents are ghost-busters. But not like, they talk to the dead. Nonono, they prove that ghosts aren't really ghosts, just energies left behind. Charlotte's older sister, Annalise, is basically the 'ghost-bait'. She calls out to the energies and talks through to them. During one of these catchings, Annalise and Charlotte call out to a couple of energys' in Charlestown. However, they stay with Charlotte, and continue to stay with her for her senior year of high school.
Charlotte's first friend is this girl named Avery, who has secrets of her own. I didn't really like the friendship between the two girls. It just felt bland to me, and it wasn't true, if that makes sense. It just didn't feel like a true friendship, and I really couldn't care what happened to their friendship. However, I did care about the friendship that the author didn't dwell on: Charlotte and Noah, which is her romantic interest, I guess. I'll have to read the sequel to know if that actually happened. I was also interested in the relationship between Annalise and Charlotte. Actually, I feel like the author lacked a lot with all the relationships in the book, and that was a big downer for me. I just didn't feel any passion between the characters, whether it be the mother and father, and or the siblings.
The storyline was okay. I did see a few things way before it happened, so there wasn't that many twists and turns. And the author put a lot of emphasis on some objects, so it was obvious there was be something going on with that later on in the book.
In the book, Charlotte has two spirits following her. Turns out, they are parents, and they are trying to find their daughter, Charlotte Pickens. I think a main theme of Past Midnight is moving on, and being guided to the right place. Family plays an important part, and also not being afraid of who you are. I think the themes played out beautifully, and they were natural and not clumped into the story. Charlotte was embarrassed of her family, as any teenager would be, but times a million because they are famous ghost hunters, so she tries to hide them multiple times. Something I really liked was the fact that Charlotte was never annoying, or bratty. She always was true to herself and her family, and for that, I am grateful. Nobody likes a whiny main character. Nobody.
"It was strangely simple the way that one thing suddenly defined you to other people."
-Past Midnight, Mara Purnhagen