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Thirteen Days of Midnight by Leo Hunt

Thirteen Days of Midnight

by Leo Hunt

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Luke Manchett (1)

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Showing 5 of 5
13 Days of Midnight is the first book in the Luke Manchett trilogy, but I read it second. I'd won a LibraryThing Early Reviewers Program copy of the third book, 7 Trees of Stone and LOVED IT. The third book had enough references to the first two that I had no trouble following the action, but that didn't give me the emotional connection to the scenes referenced. It's the difference between reading a summary of a movie and watching the movie.

I loved book one as much as I loved book three (except for one chapter). I'm rather grateful that I knew spoilers for this book. I'm 62, not Luke Manchett's 16, and knowing was less strain on my nerves.

The beauty of Mr. Hunt's descriptions reminds me of Barbara Hambly's fantasies. I like Luke even though he's the kind of boy who wouldn't have known me from Eve when I was in high school. Aside from having to wear conservative clothes (VERY strict parents), and not smoking, I was more like Elza Moss, the book's main female character.

Luke cares about appearing normal to his classmates. He doesn't want them to know that his mother is ill and his absentee father hosts a weird TV show. Luke should have learned as much as he could about Dr. Horatio Manchett before signing a paper Mr. Berkley, his father's lawyer, handed to him. Yes, there's a lot of money involved, but there's also a price to be paid.

That price includes becoming personally acquainted with some ghosts. Some of those ghosts aren't bad, but others are scary. The Fury might be the scariest ghost, but The Shepherd's greater intelligence makes him the most dangerous, in my opinion. The Shepherd has a plan. Luke is not interested in his starring role in that plan. The Shepherd has ways of making him cooperate.

Our setting is Dunbarrow, a very small, ancient town '...up in the hills of North East England.' How ancient is it? Those New England farm houses that H.P. Lovecraft characters declare are ancient are brand new by comparison. Do try to avoid visiting the Devil's Footprints.

Chapter notes (the chapters have names, not numbers):

(the circle opens):

a. Luke's middle initial is "A."

b. 'Master' is the proper form of address for a boy not old enough to be a 'Mister".

c. Cluster headaches are real. I've never had one, but I read about them when I was a medical librarian.

d. To call a traitor a 'Judas' comes from Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Christ.

(sunny-side up):

a. Dunbarrow High School is 40 years old and hasn't been maintained well.

b. Holiday Simmon and Elza Moss are described.

c. Elza Moss's eye makeup is compared to Cleopatra's.

d. We get some of Luke's dad's backstory.

(the host):

a. Note that the emergency phone number in England is 999, not 9-1-1. Luke refers to the person who answers as the operator, not the dispatcher.

b. Luke's house number is seven.

c. I was confused when the Vassal said the Heretic was reciting the first part of the Lord's Prayer, because he recites all of the 'Our Father' that I normally say. Then I remembered the longer part that's said at Mass. The Catholic Church stopped saying the Mass in Latin when I was a girl, but some prayers are said in Latin again during televised Masses. That's why I memorized them.

d. the Book of Eight is named.

e. Luke reads some of his father's papers.

(gray skies):

a. Elza makes a revelation about herself and her family.

b. Dunbarrow existed before the Romans invaded England. (Elza doesn't state whether she means Julius Caesar in 55 and 54 B.C. or when the Romans started conquering the country in 43 A.D.)

c. Elza explains Liveside and Deadside, as well as the difference between demons and ghosts .

d. Elza gives her address as Number 19, Towen Crescent.

e. The 'A' in 'Luke A. Manchett' stands for 'Archibald.'

f. We meet the Prisoner and the Shepherd.

(echoes and relics):

a. Elza explains what a wyrdstone is.

b. The Oracle is prophesying.

c. Elza's neighborhood is described.

d. Elza and her family have lived in Towen Crescent for 12 years.

e. We learn why Luke named his dog 'Ham'.

f. The Smiths, the Cure, David Bowie, and Nick Cave are mentioned.

g. There is a list of the Host and what each ghost represents.

h. Edgar Allan Poe is mentioned.

i. A contractor gives some interesting information.

(the lash):

a. We learn where the Simmons live.

b. We learn that Dr. Manchett's TV show was called 'Nightwatch'. The episode about Coldstane Rectory (fictional) is on.

c. Kirk is wearing a Superman costume.

d. Mark is wearing a Captain America costume (not Captain Britain? Tsk.).

e. Alice does something rude.

f. Frankenstein ['s Monster] and Dracula costumes are mentioned.

g. We learn that the Heretic was once a monk.

(barren earth):

a. Elza was 13 when she found some hazel charms in her grandma's attic.

b. Elza's mother's nurse's uniform is pale blue, not white.

c. We meet the ghosts of three high school lads who died in a car crash three years ago.

d. The Devil's Footsteps area is described.

e. Elza mentions the siege of Troy.


a. A dogsbody is a person who gets to do the boring and menial stuff.

b. In case you weren't exposed to nursery rhymes when you were little, Old Mother Hubbard had a bare cupboard.

(the devil's footprints) We learn about the Rite of Tears.

(the undiscovered country):

a. Luke remembers when his dad walked out of his life. He was six years old.

b. We're given some of the names used by the Devil (the Americanisms such as 'Old Nick' or 'Old Scratch' are not included).

c. Luke has a memory from when he was five years old.

d. We learn about a Necromancer who called himself Octavius and another Necromancer named Magnus Ahlgren.

e. Rasputin is mentioned.

f. We get some background information on the Innocent.

I heartily recommend 13 Days of Midnight to any reader who loves a good, scary ghost story. If you're a fan of humor mixed with your horror (think of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' and 'Ash VS Evil Dead' TV shows or the 'Army of Darkness' movie), you'll be doubly in luck.

Dog lovers: There's a big hunting dog named Ham to enjoy. ( )
  JalenV | Jun 28, 2017 |
School Library Journal, June 2015
  aethomas731 | Jun 24, 2017 |
13 Days of Midnight
By: Leo Hunt
Published by Candlewick Press
Copy Courtesy of Goodreads giveaways
Reviewed by: tk

Ghosts! Not one or two, how about 8 antsy spirits who want revenge?

Luke Manchett's father dies. Luke has become heir to a fortune. He isn't grieving like most families do when a loved one passes on. He's actually excited to hear what he has become heir too. His dad left him and his mum when he was six years old, isn't it their time now. To stop living so poorly in the shadows of life is a dream come true.

A fantastic journey. I have to admit there is an amount of laugh out loud humor, but I am a strange individual. Luke ends up with so much than he though was humanly possible. Luke only has 13 days to find out the secrets revolving around these 8 ghosts. Enlisting his new friend Elza to hel his Luke will discover what truth there is to be found.

Turn down the lights and lock the door if need be to enter Leo Hunt's wonderfully creative mind and enjoy.
Recommended for ages 14 and up
5/5 ( )
  doseofbella | Nov 19, 2015 |
Leo has never forgiven his father for leaving him and his mither, so when he gets the news that his dad has passed, he's sad...but not that sad. He doesn't talk to anyone about it, because not only was his father a jerk, but he's embarrassing: a TV medium, tricking grieving people into believing he could talk to their dead relatives, could sense ghosts in haunted house, etc.

But then Leo meets his dad's creepy lawyer, who says Leo's inherited millions of dollars, a book, and his dad's collection of rings. And then he starts seeing people that no one else sees...and they're terrifying. And deadly.

A creepy, scary horror story. Pair with Hold Me Closer, Necromancer if you thought that was too tame and didn't include enough murdering ghosts.

Recommended! ( )
  kayceel | Oct 31, 2015 |
Thirteen Days of Midnight by Leo Hunt is a young adult paranormal novel. Luke Manchett lives with his mother in Dunbarrow, England o Wormwood Drive. Luke’s father just passed away which he found out about through a letter from his father’s solicitor, Mr. Berkley. His parents had been separated for years. Luke is sixteen years old and has not seen his father in years. Luke goes to the solicitor’s officer and found that he has inherited over 6 million pounds. But there are some conditions. First Luke must sign some documents. All are normal except the last one. It is on vellum with Gothic letting in old brown ink and written in Latin. Luke looks at the document strangely, but then signs it (I would have asked for a translation or a Latin dictionary). Mr. Berkley seemed very eager for Luke to sign the strange document. Luke then receives some items that his father wanted him to have. One is an old, green book with an eight pointed star on the cover. There are also some documents and rings that his father always wore.

That night Luke hears strange noises in his house (his mother has taken medication for her cluster headaches and is out for the count). After checking the house, Luke retires to his room with his dog, Ham. He leaves the green book downstairs. The next morning the book is on his nightstand. He also finds a full English breakfast laid out on the kitchen table. His mother is still out of it and Luke knows the dog cannot cook. That night he sees these two strange men following men, but no one else can see them. The next morning the two men are in his home. They are his host. There are eight of them (each has a name and function). They are spirits that his father bound to him. Turns out that Horatio Manchett was a necromancer. His power comes from his host. Luke has no idea how to control them, and he cannot get open the book his father gave him. The book is the key. Luke gets some help from Elza Moss. She has witch blood and has second sight. She can also see the spirits. Luke finds out that he has to get his host under control by Halloween or they will break free (and he will die). The host is taking no chances and they kidnap Luke’s mother, Persephone. Luke with Elza’s help has to figure out how to control or get rid of the host before it is too late.

Thirteen Days of Midnight sounds like a good book, but it really is not. It seems to lack a good flow and some editing. The basic idea is interesting, but I was not pleased with this book. Thirteen Days of Midnight gets 2.5 out of 5 stars. It was just an okay book. I think with a little rewriting and some editing it could be a great story. I also did not think they would ever explain the details of Luke’s power, the host, or how his father obtained his power (it explains everything at the end of the book). There is, of course, the requisite teenage romance in the book. One thing I did like about the book was Ham, the dog. He was cute and ended up being a critical element.

I received a complimentary copy of Thirteen Days of Midnight from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The review and opinions expressed are my own. ( )
  Kris_Anderson | Aug 23, 2015 |
Showing 5 of 5
Hunt’s gripping first novel introduces British 16-year-old Luke Manchett, who discovers that his late, estranged father was a necromancer and that he has left Luke millions of pounds in his will—as well as eight ghosts.

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Leo Huntprimary authorall editionscalculated
Gonzalez, VivianaCover image moon & skysecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The first thing that happens is I unseal an envelope and Dad's death falls out onto the breakfast table.
Standing in my crush's kitchen, waiting for the arrival of my dad's horde of evil spirits, listening to Elza and Holiday coproduce a strong contender for Most Awkward Conversation of the Year Award, I decide that I am going to have a drink after all. ('the lash' chapter)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0763678651, Hardcover)

In a devilishly dark and funny debut, a teen finds himself the unwitting beneficiary of eight enslaved and angry ghosts seeking bloody vengeance.

When Luke Manchett’s estranged father dies unexpectedly, he leaves his son a dark inheritance: a collection of eight restless spirits, known as his Host, who want revenge for their long enslavement. Once they figure out that Luke has no clue how to manage them, they become increasingly belligerent, and eventually mutiny. Halloween (the night when ghosts reach the height of their power) is fast approaching, and Luke knows his Host is planning something far more trick than treat. Armed with only his father’s indecipherable notes, a locked copy of The Book of Eight, and help from school outcast Elza Moss, Luke has just thirteen days to uncover the closely guarded secrets of black magic and send his unquiet spirits to their eternal rest—or join their ghostly ranks himself.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 06 Jul 2015 23:23:35 -0400)

When Luke Manchett's estranged father dies suddenly, he leaves his son a dark inheritance: a Host of eight unique, powerful, and restless spirits. Unfortunately, Luke has no clue how to manage them, which the ghosts figure out pretty quickly. Armed with only his father's indecipherable notes, and a locked copy of "The Book of Eight", Luke struggles to adapt to his new role as a necromancer. --From dust jacket flap… (more)

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