Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Back Door of Midnight by Elizabeth Chandler

The Back Door of Midnight by Elizabeth Chandler
Release Date: November 16th, 2010
Publisher: Simon Pulse

Psychic...or psychotic? Anna knows her family is crazy. But when she goes to visit her aunt and uncle for the summer and learns that her uncle’s charred body has been found, her life reaches a new level of insanity. Her erratic aunt’s “psychic” abilities are exaggerated by her grief, and have become borderline violent. Alone in an unfamiliar town, Anna struggles to pick up the pieces and establish any sense of normalcy. She desperately wants to trust Zack, the cute boy next door, but even he might know more about the incident than he is letting on. But when Anna starts feeling an inexplicable pull to the site of her uncle’s murder, she begins to believe that her family’s supernatural gifts are real after all. Torn between loyalty and suspicion, Anna is certain of only one thing: she must discover who killed her uncle or she could be next....

This is the kind of story I really like.  It had such an awesome mixture of paranormal, mystery, suspense, and romance in it.  It held my attention from the very first page.  I've always been a fan of Elizabeth Chandler's Dark Secrets stories, and this was a great addition to the list. 

Anna was one of my favorite characters of Chandler's so far.  She was so smart and resourceful.  She's on her own throughout the story, and when she arrives at her aunt and uncle's house, she really just takes charge and starts investigating the murder.  Her ability to logic her way through the clues and find herself pretty close to the answer was awesome! I love to see a smart teenage heroine like this.

I really loved Zach as well.  He was such a mystery at first.  Is he on her side?  Is he hiding something?  These questions gave him a really interesting dark side that we had to work our way through.  But I loved the romance between these two.

I wasn't really expecting the murderer to be who it turned out to be.  So that was a nice surprise, that the author was able to keep us guessing, but at the same time, I could easily look back through the story and recognize clues where Chandler had dropped us some hints along the way.

This was a great suspenseful story, and I really enjoyed it.  I'm hoping that Chandler will be coming out with some more Dark Secrets stories in future.  I highly recommend this one.

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