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Hysteria - Megan Miranda The Good
  1. The opening.  The opening to this book grabbed my attention immediately. It was shocking and intriguing. Unfortunately, the book lost steam and my attention very quickly thereafter.
  2. The grandmother.  Death and mortality are a large theme throughout the book, but Mallory's conversation with her dying grandmother is particularly poignant and very memorable.
  3. The friendship.  Mallory's friendship with Colleen feels very genuine and real. The way they stick together even through the murder and the aftermath is remarkable.
  4. The twist.  The true reason behind Mallory's "hysteria" at the end of the book floored me, I really didn't see it coming.

The Bad
  1. The characters.  There wasn't any real dimension to any of the characters. Most of the people Mallory goes to school with are typical teenage stereotypes, and even Jason feels like a half-baked enemy throughout most of the book.
  2. The almost love triangle.  When Jason is introduced, it feels like Miranda is trying to set up a love triangle, but then Jason is painted as a villain...most of the time. There are still moments of confusion as to what the actual role of Jason is in Mallory's life. Reid is a constant love-interest though, so that is something at least.
  3. The lack of thrill and plot.  I think this may be the least thrilling thriller I have ever read. The very first chapter and the last twenty percent of the book are the only parts I found interesting or particularly creepy at all. The rest of the book is filled with boring, inconsequential boarding school drama and various "hauntings" which, while slightly shocking at first, quickly become predictable and annoying. The boarding school girls are all cardboard cut outs of the quintessential high school "mean girls" complete with posse, sluttiness, and fake smiles.

Overall Rating

1.5 - When I read the beginning of this book, all I could think was, "Wow, this is gonna be good." I wish I had been right. The lack of excitement, stereotypical flat characters, and weird kind of love triangle really ruined this for me, but I think pace was the biggest problem. The creepy, unexpected ending and catchy beginning were just not enough to save this book unfortunately.