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=The Mediator 1: Love You to Death - Meg Cabot=
Although Meg Cabot books are wrote for teenagers, I have a 10 year old daughter, who has a reading age of 13+ and therefore needs to be challenged with teenage books, but that is where the problem can occur, the storylines are too old for her, so I tend to have to read the books first usually just a couple of chapters, but I was so engrossed in this book I needed to finish it to see what happened.
This is the first in a series of 6 books in The Mediator series.
It was published back in 2000, with a RRP of £5.99, I paid 20p from a car boot.
months back, and although she writes books for all ages, her books aimed at teenagers
=The Story Line=
Susannah Simon is a 26 year old girl, who had lived with her mum in New York, it had been just the two of them since Susannah's dad had died years ago. This all changes as her mum has now remarried to a man called Andy.
Whilst her mum and Andy go to North Carolina to set up and sort out a new home for the family, Susannah stays in New York with her grandmother.
As you would expect it is soon time for Susannah to start her new life and she is met at the airport by her mum, her stepdad Andy and her new stepbrothers, who she has nicknamed, Dopey, Sleepy and Doc.
Susannah did not want to leave her life behind, she had her gran, her best friend Gina.
It soon becomes apparent, why she doesn't like her new life, A ghost. Although since Susannah has been small she has seen ghosts and regularly speaks to her dad, this ghost is the ghost of a student at the school where Susannah is going, the place that belonged to this girl.
This beings up many questions from can they stop the ghost girl doing any harm, will Susannah make friends, will people think she's a freak because she's from New York, how will she adapt from being just her and her mum to a while large family?
I really enjoyed the book, it was original as it was the first book that I had seen that had not just the ghost but the medium ship and the communication.
Since I read the book I gave it to my daughter, and she asked a few questions, about ghosts and communicating with them, to me it gave an adult subject to become an approachable subject for teenagers, I would say that it is really for 13 years plus or a 11 year old that is more mature.
Some places was a bit silly and over the top and farfetched, but it was an introduction to the next level of reading.
=Would I recommend=
Yes it was ok, not a book that I would rave about but a 3/5 score.
I read my first Meg Cabot book a few months back, and although she writes books for all ages, her books aimed at teenagers are very easy to read and quite enjoyable.
The Mediator - Love You to Death (Shadowland in America) is the first in a series of 6 Mediator books. It was published in 2000. This book has an R.R.P of £5.99.
Susannah Simon is a 16 year old girl who, up until recently, lived with her mum in New York. It was just the two of them since Susannah's dad died years ago but this is all changing now. Susannah's mum has now remarried to a nice man called Andy. So her mum has moved to North Carolina to set up home and sort out a school for Susannah while she stayed in New York with her grandmother.
The house is ready, her room is decorated and a place in a school has become available, the book starts with Susannah being greeted at the airport by her mum, stepdad Andy and her New step brothers who she refers to as Doc, Dopey and Sleepy.
They will all be living together and Susannah describes her life in New York as a bit of a loner and outcast with only her grandmother and her best friend Gina to leave behind. Even though she isn't going to miss New York too much, she doesn't seem too excited about the move and isn't really looking forward to it.
When she arrives at her new home it becomes apparent why she was apprehensive about the move. She doesn't like old buildings and as soon as she steps into her new bedroom, there - sat on the window seat - is the reason why. A ghost.
Since she was small she has seen, spoke to and even punched ghosts. She regularly talks to her dad and finds that old buildings have more ghosts which is why she didn't want to move to the old house and was even less impressed at the thought of attending an 18th century school.
Her fears become reality when she gets to the school and finds the space for her only became available after the death of another student, who is far from Casper the friendly ghost. Will she be able to communicate with the ghost girl in an attempt to stop her from doing any harm before it's too late? Will she make friends or will they all think she's a freak like they did in New York? And how will she find life with her new, bigger family?
The book was quite enjoyable and quite an original idea, I haven't seen many books for this age group with a ghostly/mediumship kind of subject matter.
I wouldn't recommend the books for children too young as they could find the story involving the ghosts a bit scary, especially as they're not all nice ghosts and do some dangerous things.
Most of the book was good but it did get silly and over the top in some places, a girl in a new town sneaking out in the middle of the night to go battling with ghosts was a bit too far fetched.
I didn't find the book as good as some others by the same author but it wasn't bad either and it did make me want to read the next book in the series to see what else the mediator will be getting up to.
Despite the fact that Meg Cabot's Princess Diaries book have made the most crictial acclaim, they are not my favourite books by far. Alongside that, she wrote 6 books following the life of Susanne Simon.
Suze is a 16 year old girl, with special powers. She's a mediator. She sees, she talks and she kicks ghost's asses. In the first book, she moves from New York to Northern California, to live with her new step-father and her mother. Her step father Andy, has three sons, Jake, Brad and David.
However when she moves into her new room, she sees someone else in her room, someone that no one else can see, the gorgeous ghost Jesse.
When Suze starts the new school she finds that she is not alone, the principle of the school Father Dominic, is also a mediator and he helps Suze fight ghosts.
Susannah 'Suze' Simon
Suze is 16 year old girl with special abilities. She is a mediator, which means she can see and talk to ghosts and helps them move on. In the book she moves from New York to Northern California, when her mother meets a new man. However in her room, she finds she's not alone.
He is the principle of the Junipero Serra Mission Academy, and is a catholic priest. Suze finds out she's not alone, when he reveals he's also a mediator.
His outlook on life and ghosts, often clashes with Suze who prefers using violence, where he likes using peaceful methods.
CeeCee & Adam
CeeCee and Adam are the friends that Suze makes when she moves to Northern California. CeeCee has a crush on Adam, but he only likes Suze. They're the 'freaks' of the school, but Suze becomes their friend.
Jake, Brad and David Ackerman
These are Suze's new brothers. Jake is the eldest and Suze calls him Sleepy. He's a year older than Suze and he works as a pizza delivery boy. He's known as the hottie in the school.
Brad is the same age as Suze, he is called Dopey by Suze and he likes wrestling girls and parties. He's your average high school jock.
David is the youngest of the brothers, he is called Doc by Suze. He knows about Suze's powers and is very intelligent.
Jesse De Silva
Jesse is the guy that haunts Suze's room. He was supposed to get married in the 19th century but was killed before hand. He still haunts the house 150 years later and becomes Suze's love interest.
There have been six books in this series and to make it more confusing they have two titles for each one, here's a list.
Book 1- Love You To Death aka Shadowland
Book 2- High Stakes- Ninth Key
Book 3- Mean Spirits- Reunion
Book 4- Young Blood- Darkest Hour
Book 5- Grave Doubts- Haunted
Book 6- Heaven Sent- Twilight
I was always a fan of The Princess Diaries books, but never really felt like her writing style was my kind of style, so when a mate introduced me to The Mediator, I was a bit hesitant, but I gave it a go and I'm glad I did.
Love You To Death, which is the first book, introduces you to all of the characters, I found with all of the books, once you've read them all, it's very hard to tell where one started and ended as they all just become one big story to me. I assume this is a good thing, as it's easy to remember what happened, but not individually.
As soon as I read the book, I had fallen in love with Jesse. He sounded gorgeous and so chivalrous. The way Cabot writes her characters is just amazing, they have so much depth in them and you're able to feel what they're feeling.
Meg Cabot is an awesome writer, I think she's definitely more of a 'teen writer' than anything, and as a teen, her books appeal to me, especially the ones like The Mediator as they're a lot more mature than some of them.
Should You Buy The Book?
Yes, I have read all six in the series and they're all good, the story is simple but compelling, you find yourself relating to Suze and falling for Jesse just like Suze is.
The book is very well written, and so much better than the Princess Diaries book. Imagine Ghost Whisperer in written form, but oh so much better. A great story, which you won't be able to put down.
~ Author ~
Meg Cabot was born in 1967, Indiana, United States. She has also written under the name Meggin Cabot, as well as the pseudonyms Patricia Cabot and Jenny Carroll. She has written over 50 books for children, teenagers and adults. Meg Cabot is most famous for her Princess Diary series which was later made into two Disney films in 2001 and 2004. She now lives in Florida with her husband and cat.
The Mediator series is made up 6 books. It was previously published under different names. The books were originally released under the pseudonym Jenny Carroll, as Meg Cabot was working with different publishing houses. The first four books were later reprinted under Cabot's real name in 2005 with new cover art. The Mediator: Love You to Death was previously published as Shadowland, in October 2000.
16 year old Susannah Simon (also known as Suze) is a mediator. She can see, speak and kick ghost butt. The beginning of the book sees Suze travelling to Northern California from New York to meet her mum (Helen Ackerman) ,to move in with her new step father, Andy Ackerman. Suze now has three stepbrothers, Jake, Brad and David Ackerman, who Suze has nick-named Sleepy (Jake), Dopey (Brad) & Doc (David). Suze is wary that she'll be greeted by a spirit as the new house is old and arrives to find gorgeous Jesse haunting her room. She immediately asks him to leave but will he?
Suze soon starts a new school, The Junipero Serra Mission Academy, also an old building. Luckily there are no ghosts in sight. That's until she reaches her locker. Suze is greeted by unfriendly Heather who wants to make her life hell. To Suze's surprise, Father Dominic can see Heather too, and Suze finds out that he too is a mediator.
Suze makes in impression on her class when she threatens to break Debbie Mancuso's fingers after bad-mouthing another girl, CeeCee who is an albino. CeeCee isn't very greatful as she thinks Suze just feels sorry for her. After a while CeeCee drops it and shows Suze around the school. They later become best friends. CeeCee introduces Suze to Adam, a friend who CeeCee has a crush on who sadly has an obvious crush on Suze.
Suze soon learns that she replaced Heather Chamber (the ghost that won't leave her alone) who shot herselfin the head after her boyfriend Bryce Martin dumped her. Realising her mistake that no boy is worth dying for, she tries to kill Bryce to to get her revenge. When Heather very nearly does kill him (and Father Dominic too) Suze is ready to kick her butt.
~ Characters ~
Just to refresh your mind, here's a list of the main characters:
Susannah Simon - mostly known as Suze apart from with Father Dominic and Jesse who call her by her full name Susannah, and her mother who calls her Susie.
Jesse - 150 year old ghost who haunts Suze's bedroom
Father Dominic - Suze's fellow mediator. Head of The Junipero Serra Mission Academy
Andy Ackerman - Suze's new stepfather who treats Suze like his own daughter
Helen Ackerman - Suze's Mother
Jake Ackerman - Also known as "Sleepy" (very quiet, doesn't pay much attention to anything), Suze's oldest stepbrother.
Brad Ackerman- Also known as "Dopey" (Suze thinks he's very stupid), Suze's stepbrother of the same age. Suze's least favourite brother
David Ackerman - Also known as "Doc" (very clever), Suze's youngest brother. Suze's favourite brother
Heather Chambers - Ghost trying to kill Bryce, and make Suze's life hell
Bryce Martin - Heather's ex-girlfriend
CeeCee - Suze's best friend
Adam - One of Suze's closest friends
~ Overall ~
The Mediator: Love You to Death is a very enjoyable book. Written well with a good storyline (which is really believable), I can't find any faults. I'd recommend this to anyone who is 13-17 years old.