February 2, 2013

Review + Giveaway: Hysteria

Hey guys! I had the pleasure of reading Megan Miranda’s new book, and I am in love. Of course, I like novels that are dark and twisty and leave me questioning my own sanity, I mean, the character’s sanity.

After checking out my review, scroll down for your chance to win a copy of Hysteria, on shelves Tuesday.

Title: Hysteria
Author: Megan Miranda
ISBN: 9780802723109   
Pages: 336                          
Available: February 5, 2013
Source: Netgalley

Summary (from the book jacket):

Mallory killed her boyfriend, Brian. She can't remember the details of that night but everyone knows it was self-defense, so she isn't charged. But Mallory still feels Brian's presence in her life. Is it all in her head? Or is it something more? In desperate need of a fresh start, Mallory is sent to Monroe, a fancy prep school where no one knows her . . . or anything about her past. But the feeling follows her, as do her secrets. Then, one of her new classmates turns up dead. As suspicion falls on Mallory, she must find a way to remember the details of both deadly nights so she can prove her innocence-to herself and others.

In another riveting tale of life and death, Megan Miranda's masterful storytelling brings readers along for a ride to the edge of sanity and back again.

My Thoughts:

Besides the rockin’ cover, this book has a lot going for it.

I am a scaredy cat. It’s bad. The littlest things make me jump. I found myself jumping several times while reading this creepy book. My husband kept trying to talk to me while I was reading it, and I found myself saying to my him, “Stop talking to me. I’m trying to read this creepy book.” That’s the way I’ve been describing the plot: creepy.

What’s creepy about it is what is happening to Mallory. She hears whispers. She hears footsteps. She hears pounding. She sees shadows. She feels someone gripping her shoulder. Or does she? This part of the plot was a combination of ‘The Bell Jar’ and ‘Mara Dyer’ for me. Was the author descending me into madness, or was there method to the madness?

That’s about all I can say without spoiling any element of the plot because there is so much more I want to say, but I’m afraid it will ultimately ruin the experience for you.

The strength of this novel does not lie in its plot as much as its characters. I loved them. I invested in them. I wanted more of them. Okay, just of Reid, but he’s a character so it counts.

First, Mallory. Oh Mallory – what a character she is. She just cannot remember the night she killed Brian. Well, I guess that’s not really accurate. She remembers it in snapshots. Pieces here. Pieces there. As readers, we discover the truth as she discovers it, which I appreciated. The author throws puzzle pieces at us—and Mallory—and it’s our job to put them together. While the pieces fall slowly, I felt it was a necessity to the development of her character, as well as her questioned madness. I think it was risky for impatient readers, but I enjoyed it because the author gave me just enough of a flashback at all the right moments to keep me engaged.

Second, Mallory’s best friend Colleen. I love this girl. She is 100% best friend material, something that any teenage girl who has killed her boyfriend and cannot remember that night needs. And Mallory needs Colleen, more than she will admit. Colleen brings humor and truth to the story, but mostly I just wanted to be her best friend. Every girl needs a Colleen in her corner.

And there is Reid. Reid is a friend who needs Mallory in his life as much as Mallory needs him. Their relationship is a bit complicated. After all, Mallory is carrying baggage with her when she arrives at Monroe, and I am not talking suitcases, but Reid has his own. And he takes her as she is. He believes in her. He wants to help her. And he wants to kiss her. His character reminded me of Jake Ryan (swoon) with more lines. He’s the guy mom wants you to bring home.I felt he wasn't in the book enough, but that would not have served the author's purpose.

What would a YA novel set in a private school be without resident bad girls – and bad boys? Krista and Jason? They are snarky, and snide, and they do not disappoint.

I have read a few reviews that complained that the author doesn’t effectively develop the plot, and I have to disagree. I thought the pacing was right on track, and I felt that she answered most of my questions. There was one major question that I felt she did not adequately tie together. Since it wasn’t something that made me feel frustrated with the book, I can forgive her.

My only complaint is that I felt the book needed one more chapter. With kissing. Kissing is good after reading a creepy book, right?

And now it is giveaway time…that’s why you’re really here anyway. Enter for your chance to win a copy of Hysteria. Good luck all!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Reading!

-          The Hodgenator


  1. The creepiest book I have read recently is probably This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers. I don't really read many creepy books so this is as creepy as it gets for me.

    Loved the book BTW

  2. I never really read a creepy book xD

  3. Mallory sounds like an unreliable narrator, which I love! Colleen sounds awesome, too.

    As far as creepy books go, I'd recommend the Mara Dyer books and I Hunt Killers.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. Already on my to-read list! I would love to read the book when it comes out. It sounds pretty interesting... Great pick!


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