Look for Me by Moonlight

Look for Me by Moonlight

by Mary Downing Hahn

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780547076164
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 09/08/2008
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 208
Sales rank: 161,822
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Mary Downing Hahn , a former children’s librarian, is the award-winning author of many popular ghost stories. An avid reader, traveler, and all-around arts lover, Ms. Hahn lives in Columbia, Maryland. Visit her online at www.marydowninghahnbooks.com.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

SOMETIMES YOU CAN PINPOINT THE EXACT MOMENT life when things begin to go wrong. For me, it was the day my father left my mother. I was six years old, too young to understand what was happening except that it involved a student in one of Dad's literature classes. A girl named Susan. Because of her, he was moving out of our house. I cried and begged him to stay, I swore I'd be good, but nothing I said or did made any difference. Dad packed his bags and his books and kissed me goodbye.

"I love you, Cynda," he said. "No matter where I live, I'll always be your father, and you'll always be my daughter. Nothing will change."

Of course, it wasn't true. A year later, Dad moved to Maine with Susan and I stayed in Mary land with Mom. That meant he was suddenly almost a thousand miles away. It also meant I saw less and less of him.

Not long after Dad married Susan, Mom married Steve, and things changed again. We became a Navy family, hopscotching all over America. California, Florida, Virginia-we never stayed in one place long enough for me to make friends, settle down, and feel comfortable.

When Steve announced we were going to Italy for three years, I fiat-out rebelled. Giving up all pre tense of being a mature sixteen-year-old, I threw a major temper tantrum which resulted in a series of phone calls between my mother and my father. The end result was an invitation to stay with Dad for at least six months, maybe longer if things worked out.

Mom's role in setting up the visit surprised me. She'd never forgiven Dad for falling in love with Susan. Nor did she approve of his career. In addition to writing best-selling mysteries, he ran an old inn on the Mainecoast-occupations my mother denounced as fiscally irresponsible, proof of Dad's immaturity and selfishness.

Later, when I had time to think about it, I came to the conclusion that Mom and Steve had decided Italy would be more fun without me. To be candid, things hadn't been good in our house since I turned thirteen and, as Mom put it, lost my mind over night. Which meant I changed from an obedient child who never gave anyone a second's trouble into an obnoxious teenager who left wet towels on the bathroom floor and dirty dishes in front of the television, played loud music, and argued about everything from politics to curfews. Maybe Mom thought it was Dad's turn to cope with me. Maybe I was her revenge.

Whatever her reasons, Mom put me on a plane to Maine one cold January day. As I left National Airport in Washington behind, I tried to convince myself I was going to a new and better life with Dad, but deep down inside I wasn't so sure. I hadn't seen my father for almost two years, hadn't talked to him about anything important for longer than that. Worse yet, I'd never met his wife or their son, now five years old. I might not like Susan, she might not like me. Todd might be spoiled and bratty.

By the time my plane landed, I'd had more time to think (and worry) than I'd expected. Thanks to winter storms buffeting the coast from Virginia to Nova Scotia, my flight had been delayed, diverted, and unexpectedly stranded in Boston for two hours. I'd eaten lousy food and washed it down with even worse coffee. I'd read a three-hundred page novel whose plot I'd already forgotten. I'd been pushed and jostled and propositioned by strangers. Not to mention bounced from one air pocket to another all the way to Bangor.

Jumpy, jangled, and tense, I was too strung out with anxiety to join the passengers mobbing the aisle. I stayed in my seat, closed my eyes, and tried to relax. In a few minutes, I'd come face to face with a father who might not even recognize me. I was going to stay with him for six months. Twenty four weeks, more or less. A hundred and seventy eight days. What would we do? What would we say? A lot could go wrong in half a year.

The doubts I'd swept under the rug began to crawl out, bigger and uglier than ever. How did Dad feel about me? Did he really want me? Or was he just doing Mom a favor? He had Susan now. And Todd. He didn't need me. Neither did Mom. She had Steve. But who did I have? Not even a boyfriend.

"Are you all right, sweetie?"

I looked up to see a flight attendant staring down at me. Red-faced with embarrassment, I hastily gathered my belongings. While I'd been brooding, everyone else had gotten off the plane. I was the only passenger still on board.

"It was a terrible flight," the attendant said as if bad weather explained everything. Chattering cheerfully about air turbulence, she followed me to the plane's exit, wished me well, and waved goodbye.

I expected to see Dad at the gate, but he wasn't there. No one was. The waiting area was deserted, the check-in desk unstaffed. Discarded newspapers and rows of empty seats gave the place a surreal look. It could have been a set for a movie about the end of the world.

Fighting panic, I reminded myself that Dad lived way up the coast, close to Canada. The snow had probably delayed him. He'd be here soon. I sat down and leafed aimlessly through my book. After a few minutes, my imagination began churning out increasingly scary scenarios. The storm had closed the roads. Dad had given up and gone back home. He couldn't call because the telephone lines were down. Maybe he'd had an accident. Maybe he was in the hospital. Maybe he'd forgotten I was coming.

What was I going to do? It was dark and cold outside. I knew no one in Bangor. I didn't have enough money to buy a return ticket. And even if I did go back to Washington, where would I stay? Our house was rented. Like a little kid, I wanted my mother, but she was on her way to Italy, blithely assuming I was safe with Dad.

An hour passed. I cried for a while, then I got mad. People arrived to meet a flight from Albany. I hated them for not being my father. I hated my father for not being them.

Just as the Albany passengers deplaned, Dad came hurrying toward me. He looked the same as I remembered, ruddy-faced and with a full beard. "Cynda, I'm so sorry," he said, giving me a hug. "The roads were terrible-accidents all the way to Bangor, cars and trucks everywhere. I'm lucky I got through."

I clung to him, crying again in spite of myself. "I was scared something had happened to you," I sobbed. "I thought you'd gone of f the road, I was afraid you'd forgotten . . ."

Dad apologized again, adding, "Don't be silly, honey. Nothing could have stopped me from getting here. Neither rain nor sleet nor whatever, as the post office puts it."

I tried to smile, to make our reunion go the way I'd planned, but all the clever things I'd meant to say dissolved into a silly jumble of platitudes and corny cliches.

"You look great," Dad said, probably to cover up the awkward silence developing between us. "Prettier than ever, just plain lovely."

"I shrugged Dad's compliments away, too embarrassed to thank him, and followed him to Baggage Claim. On the way, I glanced at my reflection in a plate-glass window, hoping to see what he saw. There I was-a tall, thin girl with a pale, narrow face and long, dark hair, tangled from sleeping on the plane. Gawky. All arms and legs and feet. A loping walk Mom had tried unsuccessfully to correct with ballet lessons.

Who was Dad kidding? At sixteen, I was far from pretty, even further from lovely. Just plain was more like it.

After we found my suitcases, we loaded them into an old Volvo station wagon and headed north toward Underhill Inn, dodging in and out of snow storms all the way to the coast. I was too tired to say much, so I let Dad do most of the talking, some thing he obviously enjoyed. He began by telling me how much Susan and Todd were looking forward to meeting me. I hoped it was true. Next he gave a long account of Susan's many talents, which included decorating, bookkeeping, and sewing.

"You'll love her," he said confidently. "And wait till you see Todd. You'll adore him, Cynda. Every body does."

Still talking, Dad accelerated to pass a log truck, and I closed my eyes, certain the chains holding the logs would break and we'd be crushed to death under the load. The Volvo fishtailed on the snowy road, but Dad was too absorbed in telling me about Todd to notice I was frightened. If my father was to be believed, my half brother was a child prodigy, sensitive and imaginative as well as charming.

How nice, I thought, but what about me? Was I special too? Or was I merely the daughter he left behind when he fell in love with Susan?

After we turned off Route 9, Dad asked if I'd like to stop for coffee. "We still have about thirty miles to go, and I could use a break."

"Coffee and something to eat," I said, grabbing the chance to keep Dad to myself a little longer. Maybe we'd relax over coffee and feel comfortable with each other. Maybe he'd ask a question that would open my heart. Maybe he'd at least stop talking about Todd.

"There's the Seaside Diner's sign." Dad pointed at a pink glow in the sky I'd mistaken for the northern lights. "It's the only place open at this hour."

A few minutes later, Dad maneuvered the Volvo into a parking place behind a pickup truck so coated with road salt I couldn't read the license plate. "Welcome to the thriving metropolis of Ferrington," he said. . . .

Copyright ) 1995 by Mary Downing Hahn

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Hahn deftly creates the proper atmosphere and setting for this spine chiller." Kirkus Reviews

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Look for Me by Moonlight 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 140 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hahn' s books are so amazing. I hope someday all of them will become movies. I wish that all books were written by such talented authers who make you keep reading until you finish. I recommend all of her books and if you choose not to, you will be sorry.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read tthis book when I wa younger and I still love it. Way better then this wierd "Twilight" phase.
Guest More than 1 year ago
WARNING! WARNING! THIS BOOK CONTAINS MAJOR AWESOMENESS! I enjoy reading all of the Mary Downing Hahn books and they are all outstanding. I just read this one and it kept me reading non-stop. The details were amazing and the suspense was breath-taking!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You will not believe this book. Its so good. Definatly a page turner!
colemanstudent-mgo More than 1 year ago
This is a book that you will love if you enjoy love and romantic stories. This book will catch your attention istanly and you will not be able to put it down because you will want to know what happens next!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read like every single book by marydowning haun sheeee is awesome i really likes wait till helen comes it was sooo good i havent resd this one yet so im startin to read noww anyway she is sooooooo awesomeeee!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was really good. This was very different then what i exspected. Ghost story lover will want tonread this!
Vampire_Freak_Renee More than 1 year ago
When I got bored and started searching for any vampire books, I happened to find Look For Me By Moonlight. At the beginning, I thought it was okay, but then when Vincent came in, I immediately fell in love. I couldn't stop reading it; I stayed awake the whole night for hours just so I could finish it!!!!!! It's one of my favorite books, and I recommend this to people who love vampires. I believe one reason why I may have liked it so much is because of my obsession with vampires. But you will love the book!!!!!!!!!!!!
sadie_leona More than 1 year ago
This was a quick read for me - mostly because I wasn't in love with it. It's got bite, I do have to say, and I didn't /hate/ it, but it just wasn't there for me.
Bottom Line: Something to read on a rainy afternoon.
lisagibson on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book was published in 1995. It was pre-Twilight, and yet it too is a vampire tale. Very different than Twilight though. I liked this book, so much in fact that I read it in one day. It held my attention. I liked the fact that the poem ¿The Highwayman¿ by Alfred Noyes is quoted in it, hence the title. And yes, I can totally see how a 17 year-old girl could be drawn to a man who¿s 30. Especially if, said man knows the things to say to lure a girl away. I even remember when I was her age, feeling some of the emotions poor Cynda felt. I would say this book age range would be 12 and up.
skstiles612 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Cynda is tired of moving around with her mother and step-father. When she is told they will be moving to Italy, she puts her foot down. This is how she ends up living with her father, pregnant step-mother, and step brother at their old Inn. Old feelings of jealousy rise up. No one understands except the new tenant of the Inn, Victor Morthanos. Her feelings toward him are growing. It doesn't seem right. She is only 15 and he is a much older man. Her step-brother Todd can't stand him. Maybe her mixed feelings have something to do with the ghost who haunts then inn. Maybe there is a connection to Victor. The question is, will Cynda make these connections before it is too late? Can she protect herself and the ones she loves? This book is one that many will be able to relate to. It is full of emotions. This is a book I would definitely recommend.
MDLady on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A quick enjoyable read. I would recommend this book to any YA lovers. Especially those who love vampires.
JRlibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Cynda goes to live with her father, his new wife, and their child in a remote inn on the outskirts of Maine. When Vincent Morthanos comes to stay, Cynda is intrigued by him, but later falls completely under his spell. He compels her to do his bidding, and when he bites her neck, she realizes what he really is, but since he commands her to tell no one, she is unable to utter a word about who he really is. Will someone figure it out in time and rescue her before it is too late for Cynda and her little brother Todd?
susanbevans on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Look For Me By Moonlight was not exactly what I expected. I thought I was getting into a YA paranormal romance type of novel, but there was really no romance to speak of. By the time Vincent began planting kisses on Cynda's naïve teenage lips and neck, it is perfectly obvious to the reader that he is bad news. Vincent himself is an incredibly well-written "bad guy," complete with an atmosphere of danger and cruelty. Our heroine however, was weak, weak, WEAK! I kept waiting for Cynda to see Vincent for who he really was... then, I waited for her to do something about it. In the end, it was Will who really facilitated Vincent's demise. The other characters of the novel - Cynda's father, stepmother, her brother Todd, and even her new friend Will - are less cleanly drawn. These auxiliary characters do their part by fading into the background of the story, without really creating any discernible subplots to muddy up the main plot. Overall, Look For Me By Moonlight was suspenseful and sufficiently creepy, but still a little disappointing. It was predictable and the ending fell flat - just plain unfulfilling after a pretty good build-up. I can't say I'd particularly recommend Look For Me By Moonlight to anyone. The story is pretty shallow - but if that's what you're looking for, this book is for you. I need a little something more.
Jenson_AKA_DL on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After reading so many stories where the vampires were "good" it was different to read a more traditional tale of a "bad" vampire. I thought this book was a quick, entertaining read and a complete story, leaving no loose ends, with a satisfying conclusion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I realy liked it although i would recomend it to 6-8 grade it age appropriate
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How does Hahn do that?She writes such frekin awesom books.the way she writes......its lik its really happen to me.Awesome book btw.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was amazing i loved it and i usally read ghost books only but this book got me to read other sort of books. This book is an older version of twilight.I very much enjoyed reading LFMBM!!I reccomd that you read this!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A thrilling yet scarey tale that i will forever remember as awesome
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is about vampires and its tote rad Go vamps except i dont like this vamp only EDWARD
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
They really should be movies
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Totally awsome!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I want to read it but i dont know my password