We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere. At least, that's what I thought. Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong. There was a curse. There was a girl. And in the end, there was a grave. Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head Green eyes, black hair.
Lena Duchannes , a girl who seems too out of place in Gatlin,. There is a curse. And no one can stop it. Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed and on her sixteenth birthday, her fate will be decided. Ethan never even saw it coming.
Sixteen-year-old Ethan Wate lives in Gatlin , S. He lives with his father and a housekeeper ; his mother has passed away. On the first day of his sophomore year of high school, Ethan again has a dream about falling through trees with a girl whose face he can't see. This dream has been recurring for months, and it troubles Ethan because in the dream he loves the girl he is falling with, though he does not know who she is. When Ethan wakes, he finds a new song by an unknown artist on his iPod.
The song is called " Sixteen Moons ," and the lyrics seem eerie to Ethan. When he checks his music player later, the song is missing. When Ethan arrives at school, he hears about a new girl in town, Lena Duchannes. Lena is ignored by most of the students because she wears long dresses and is not interested in popular pursuits like trying out for the cheerleading squad.
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Ethan hears Lena playing the song "Sixteen Moons" on her viola in orchestra, which unsettles him. Ethan drives away from school to clear his mind, and he hears "Sixteen Moons" playing over his car radio. As Ethan drives, he nearly runs over Lena. When he stops his car, he suddenly realizes that Lena is the girl who appears in his nightmares.
Lena accepts a ride home from Ethan, which marks the start of their friendship. In English class the next day, Ethan begins to hear Lena communicating with him telepathically. The girls in class insult Lena's reclusive uncle, Macon Ravenwood , and Lena's anger affects the classroom, shattering the glass in the windows.
Lena runs home to Ravenwood Manor , and Ethan follows her. Lena is crying in a garden full of lemon trees, and she begins to talk with Ethan. She says that sometimes unexplainable things happen around her. Suddenly, Ethan touches an old locket that is sitting on the ground, and he begins to see a vision of the past. In the vision, a girl named Genevieve is watching her mother's plantation, Greenbrier , burn down. This happens during the time period surrounding the Civil War. Lena is interested in Ethan's vision, but she cryptically warns him that her life is complicated and that he should not try to interact with her again.
Ethan keeps the old locket with him and asks his three great aunts, known as the Sisters , about it.
The Sisters tell him that the locket comes from the year when General Sherman burned every plantation in Gatlin, except for Ravenwood Manor. The Sisters identify the two sets of initials, which are carved into the locket, as belonging to an ancestor of Lena's — Genevieve Duchannes — and an ancestor of Ethan's named Ethan Carter Wate.
That night, Ethan has another dream of Lena slipping away from him, and he dreams he was drowning and wakes up soaking wet. After Lena misses a day of school, Ethan visits her house and meets her Uncle Macon Ravenwood, a man who no one in Gatlin has seen for years. Macon does not want to give Ethan additional information about the locket, and Ethan notices that the interior of Ravenwood Manor seems to be magical, because the interior decoration can change and entire meals can appear and vanish, seemingly according to Macon's will.
That night, Lena comes to Ethan's house and sneaks into his room to explain her unusual family.
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She says that all the people in her family are Casters spell casters who have special powers. Despite this revelation, Ethan's attraction to Lena grows, and he asks her to go on a movie date with him. They hold hands at the movie theater, which sparks rumors about Ethan and Lena at their high school. Ethan soon meets Lena's older cousin Ridley , a seductively dressed and very persuasive girl. Ridley invites Ethan to the Gathering , a holiday dinner held by Lena's extended family every year.
Ridley reveals that in five months, Lena will turn 16, and on 16th birthdays, all members of the Duchannes family are Claimed as either Light Casters or Dark Casters. After the dinner, Ethan sits in Lena's bedroom as Lena explains that Ridley is a Siren , a Dark Caster with the ability to persuade people to do anything she wants. Lena is afraid that she will become evil as Ridley is and be claimed as Dark on her upcoming birthday.
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Ethan assures her that will not happen, and he kisses Lena for the first time. That night, Ethan wakes up and sees that his housekeeper, Amma , leaving the house. Ethan follows Amma to her own home, where he watches as she goes out to the swamp and meets Lena's uncle, Macon Ravenwood. Macon is upset that Amma has not stopped Ethan from meeting with Lena, as it could be dangerous for both teenagers.
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Amma and Macon have questions they want to ask the ghosts of Amma's relatives, whom she refers to as the Greats. The ghosts are uncommunicative, and Macon and Amma are unaware of Ethan's presence at their meeting. The next day, Lena and Ethan skip school and touch the locket again.
This time, they see a vision of Genevieve Duchannes tending Ethan Carter Wate's bullet wound just before he dies. They go to the Gatlin County Library to get information from Marian Ashcroft , a librarian who was Ethan's mother's best friend. At the library, they have one more vision of Genevieve trying to bring Ethan Carter Wate back to life by using a magical text called the Book of Moons. Marian Ashcroft reveals herself to be a Keeper , a mortal who knows about the Light and Dark Casters and keeps a record of their doings.
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