The Mediator (4): Young Blood by Meg Cabot and narrated by Johanna Parker (April 2008, Whole Story Audio Books, ISBN: 9781407461533)
Summer. Season of long, slow days and short, hot nights.
Notes: Young Blood is the fourth in the six-book Mediator series and was first published in 2001 as The Mediator: Darkest Hour by Jenny Carroll.
Review: Suze Simon, Mediator to ghosts with unresolved issues, is having to work her summer break at the exclusive Carmel hotel, the Pebble Beach Hotel and Golf Resort, where she is employed as a babysitter. One of her charges is the indoor-loving eight-year-old Jack. Suze finally snaps and drags Jack down to the pool and that's how she discovers the reason for his reluctance to venture out. Jack is a Mediator as well and being so young has not handled the situation very well. His parents think there's something wrong with him and he's had no support from his older brother Paul. Paul meanwhile has taken a real interest in Suze. Suze doesn't feel the same way as she's pining over Jesse, the 150-year-old ghost in her bedroom. Bring in the ghosts of Jesse's ex-fiancée and her murderous husband and an excavation in Suze's backyard which might reveal Jesse's bones, then trouble is in store.
Unlike the previous three books, this one's all about Suze and Jesse. We get some back-story on Jesse, discover the depths of Suze's feeling for him and a glimpse of the afterlife. The story is quite tense and I was desperate to reach the end to see what happened. Some new characters have been introduced and I wonder if they'll reappear in the final two books. Somehow true-love must win but I'm not sure how. I did find Suze repeated herself a bit more than necessary in this one, constant reminders on how a relationship with Jesse couldn't work laboured the point a bit.
As before, Johanna Parker's narration is enjoyable and convincing.
The next book in the series is only available on abridged audio (and by another narrator) so I'll be switching to the book for that one. It's a shame it's not available in the Whole Story Audio Books series.
Cover: The cover's in keeping with the look of the series but doesn't particularly match the book.