If you like mysteries, ghosts, and Meg Cabot’s delightful brand of humor, you’ll love Remembrance. This is the sixth book in Cabot’s Mediator series, and the first in the series to be bumped from young adult to adult. We named this book one of our top mystery picks for this winter, and it isn’t hard to see why: Susannah Simon knows a thing or two about ghosts. In fact, she’s even engaged to gorgeous doctor who was once a member of the spirit world himself. But, instead of planning their upcoming nuptials, Susannah is being haunted by some ghosts from her past (literally!). As voracious readers, we of course recommend reading the entire series, but if you think you’re ready to dive right in, check out this excerpt below:
The school office was air-conditioned, but the shiver I felt down my spine had nothing to do with the fact that my supervisors (some of whom dress in religious habit) liked to keep the thermostat at a crisp 65 degrees.
“I’m sorry,” I said, glad the shiver didn’t show in my voice. “I’m actually very busy and important and don’t have time for rich jerks from my past who want to make amends. But I wish you luck on your path toward transformative enlightenment. Bye now.”
“Suze, wait. Don’t you want to save your house?”
“It isn’t mine anymore, remember? It’s yours. So I don’t care what happens to it.”
“Come on, Suze. This is the first time in six years you’ve actually called me back when I’ve reached out to you. I know you care—about the house.”
He was right. I’d been upset when Mom told me she and my stepdad, Andy, were selling it—much more upset than Jesse when he heard the news.
“It’s only a house, Susannah,” he’d said. “Your parents haven’t lived there in years, and neither have we. It has nothing to do with us.”
“How can you say that?” I’d cried. “That house has everything to do with us. If it weren’t for that house, we’d never have found one another!”
He’d laughed. “Maybe, querida. Then again, maybe not. I have a feeling I’d have found you, and you me, no matter where we were. That house is only a place, and not our place, not anymore. Our place is together, wherever we happen to be.”
Then he’d pulled me close and kissed me. It had been hard to feel bad about anything after that.
I guess I could understand why the big, rambling Victorian on 99 Pine Crest Road meant nothing to him. To Jesse, it’s the house in which he was killed.
To me, however, it was the house in which we’d met and slowly, over time and through many misunderstandings, fell in love—though it had seemed for years like a doomed romance: He was a Non-Compliant Deceased Person. I was a girl whose job it was to rid the world of his kind. It had ended up working out, but barely.
While the so-called “gift” of communicating with the dead might sound nifty, believe me, when a ghost shows up in your bedroom—even one who looks as good with his shirt off as Jesse does—the reality isn’t at all the way they portray it in the movies or on TV or the stupid new hit reality show Ghost Mediator (which is, I’m sorry to say, based on a best-selling video and role- playing game of the same name).
The “reality” is heartbreaking and sometimes quite violent… as my need for new boots illustrated.
Except, of course, that in the end it was my “gift” that had enabled me to meet and get to know Jesse, and even help return his soul to his corporal self, though my boss and fellow mediator, Mission Academy principal Father Dominic, likes to think that was “a miracle” we should be grateful for. I’m still on the fence about whether or not I believe in miracles. There’s a rational and scientific explanation for everything. Even the “gift” of seeing ghosts seems to have a genetic component. There’s probably a scientific explanation for what happened with Jesse, too.
One thing there’s no explanation for—at least that I’ve found so far—is Paul. Even though he’s the one who showed me the nifty time-jumping trick that eventually led to the “miracle” that brought Jesse back to the living from the dead, Paul didn’t do it out of the goodness of his heart. He did it out of a desire to get in my pants…
“Look, Paul,” I said. “You’re right. I do care. But about people, not houses. So why don’t you take your amends and your fancy new housing development and your private jet and stick them all up your external urethral orifice, which in case you don’t know is the medical term for dick hole. Adios, muchacho.”
I started to hang up until the sound of Paul’s laughter stopped me.
“Dick hole,” he repeated. “Really, Simon?”
I couldn’t help placing the phone to my ear again. “Yes, really. I’m highly educated in the correct medical terms for sexual organs now, since I’m engaged to a doctor. And that isn’t just where you can stick your amends, by the way, it’s also what you are.”
“Fine. But what about Jesse?”
“What about Jesse?”
“I could see you not caring about me, or about the house, but I think you’d be at least a little concerned about your boyfriend.”
“I am, but I fail to see what your tearing down my house has to do with him.”
“Only everything. Are you telling me you really don’t remember all those Egyptian funerary texts of Gramps’ that we used to study together after school? That hurts, Suze. That really hurts. Two mixed-up mediators, poring over ancient hieroglyphics… I thought we had something special.”
When you’re a regular girl and a guy is horny for you, he invites you over to his house after school to watch videos.
When you’re a mediator, he invites you over to study his grandfather’s ancient Egyptian funerary texts, so you can learn more about your calling.
Yeah. I was real popular in high school.
Meg Cabot was born in Bloomington, Indiana. In addition to her adult contemporary fiction, she is the author of the bestselling young adult fiction The Princess Diaries and The Mediator series. Over 25 million copies of her novels for children and adults have sold worldwide. Meg lives in Key West, Florida, with her husband.