Hysteria by Megan Miranda
Published: February 5, 2013 (Walker Children's)
Source: E-ARC from NetGalley
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.
Because it felt like we were starting right now. Then I was so close I could feel his breath, coming a little too fast. And my hands were on his chest, like I could push him away any minute, but I didn't. I spread my palms flat and tried to feel his heartbeat.
It was racing.
- Page 176
Megan Miranda became one of my go-to authors last year with Fracture, her debut novel, so as soon as I heard about Hysteria, I knew I had to read this YA thriller. Within the first few pages, I was captivated, and wanted to learn more about Mallory, and about what happened the night her boyfriend died. Megan's ability to weave a fascinating story continues in Hysteria. Once again, I didn't know who to trust, and couldn't figure out what, exactly, was happening until the last minute. Everyone was a suspect - Mallory included.
Not many authors could take an unreliable narrator like Mallory and make me care about her, but Megan Miranda did. Throughout Hysteria, scattered flashbacks reveal what really happened the night Mallory's boyfriend died, but I wasn't sure which was more compelling - Mallory's past, or her present. Starting over at a new school poses its own challenges; there's a boy, who might be a new chance at love, if Mallory is brave enough to take that chance. I wanted to push her toward Reid, who was so patient, loyal, and understanding. But I had to trust in Megan Miranda to let Mallory grow, slowly, but steadily, into someone who could trust herself again - which was incredibly difficult to believe would happen, with Mallory receiving ghostly nightmares, visions, and threats.
Hysteria is a wild ride, but one I'm glad I took. Only Megan Miranda could have told this type of story: a mystery, and a ghost story all rolled into one - with some swoon-worthy romance sprinkled in. The characters are genuine, and I couldn't get enough of the macabre undertones to Hysteria. It's a book I'll definitely purchase to add to my bookshelf!
Other books by this author:
Vengeance (Fracture #2 | 2014, Walker Children's)
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Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock
Megan Miranda was a scientist and high school teacher before writing Fracture, which came out of her fascination with scientific mysteries—especially those associated with the brain. Megan has a BS in biology from MIT and spent her post-college years either rocking a lab coat or reading books. She lives near Charlotte, North Carolina, where she volunteers as an MIT Educational Counselor. Fracture is her first novel.
Visit Megan at: her website | twitter