Review: The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall by Katie Alender

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Book info:

Release date: 8.25.15

In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time …

Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females — an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.

But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia becomes trapped. And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.

Ghost girls wander the hallways in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia learns that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, too, harbors shocking truths within its walls — truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.

And she’ll need to act quickly — before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.

Katie Alender brings heart-pounding suspense, gorgeous writing, and a feminist twist to this tale of memories and madness.

My Thoughts:

Two things:

  1.      I adore Katie Alender’s books. They’re so fun and have just the right amount of creepy/scary going on. LOVE.
  2.     I’m ordering this for school and it will be my new go-to when students ask for a “scary book.” (But really…why are high school students asking for a “scary book”?)

I got this ARC back in July and took forever to finish it. Things are crazy with the beginning of a new school year. That doesn’t mean I didn’t love the book though. This may actually be my new favorite book from Alender!

I initially felt bad for Delia. Yeah, she made a mistake, but she wasn’t really a BAD girl. Then again, we learn that most all of the other inhabitants of the house were misunderstood as far as their behavior goes. However, as far as the storyline goes…despite my lack of TIME, I found that I was constantly wanting to know what the heck was going on with Delia. What was the story behind the house? Was there any way to fix the situation?

Fans of Alender, and thriller fans in general, are going to love this one. I, for once, can’t wait to get a copy in my library and get my students hooked on the story. They’re going to enjoy it so much!

4/5 stars!

-Melanie

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Random Update!

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Currently Reading:

In this asylum, your mind plays tricks on you all the time …

Delia’s new house isn’t just a house. Long ago, it was the Piven Institute for the Care and Correction of Troubled Females — an insane asylum nicknamed “Hysteria Hall.” However, many of the inmates were not insane, just defiant and strong willed. Kind of like Delia herself.

But the house still wants to keep “troubled” girls locked away. So, in the most horrifying way, Delia becomes trapped. And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.

Ghost girls wander the hallways in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia learns that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, too, harbors shocking truths within its walls — truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.

And she’ll need to act quickly — before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.

Katie Alender brings heart-pounding suspense, gorgeous writing, and a feminist twist to this tale of memories and madness.

Updates:

I got Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall from Scholastic and am LOVING it so far. I’ve read a few of Katie Alender’s books before and always enjoy them. However…this one is my favorite of hers so far! Full review to come when I finish.

That said, I haven’t done much lately because I’ve been working on my first paper for Grad school. My class last fall didn’t require a paper and I didn’t take anything in the spring, so this is my first time to write a graduate level paper and it is kicking my butt.

Side note: Never read a Katie Alender book while also writing a paper on a Poe story…talk about creepy dreams!

ALSO!! I have a new library this year! I went one day last week for a brief while before a new employee orientation and I love my space, but I have a LOT of work to do. The school hadn’t had a librarian since around November, so tons of things were in the wrong spot on the shelves. I’m not OCD by any means except for when it comes to my shelving.

Which brings me to another point…I’m thinking of taking on the task of organizing my fiction by genre. I’ve searched pinterest and found several articles on it, but it still seems like a HUGE undertaking. If anyone has any tips on what to do then feel free to share because it seems like a huge idea.

I also have some crafting in mind for book ends and what not. I’m not crafty, so that should be interesting, for sure.

Well, back to Poe for now. I’ll be glad to finish this paper and get it turned in Thursday!

-M

Review: Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer

Summary from Amazon:

Heads will roll!

Paris, France: a city of fashion, chocolate croissants, and cute boys. Colette Iselin is thrilled be there for the first time, on her spring break class trip. 

But a series of gruesome murders are taking place around the city, putting everyone on edge. And as she tours the sights, Colette keeps seeing a strange vision: a pale woman in a ball gown and powdered wig, who looks like Marie Antoinette. 

Colette knows her status-obsessed friends won’t believe her, so she seeks out the help of a charming French boy. Together, they discover that the murder victims are all descendants of people who ultimately brought about Marie Antoinette’s beheading. The queen’s ghost has been awakened, and now she’s wreaking her bloodthirsty revenge. 

And Colette may just be one of those descendants . . . which means she might not make it out of this trip alive.

Acclaimed author Katie Alender brings heart-stopping suspense to this story of betrayal, glamour, mystery, history–and one killer queen.

 

My Review:

Get this book. Point blank.

This is a new middle grade book that releases on September 24. I got it from NetGalley because it is a featured pick for Scholastic’s Book Fair this fall. As librarian, I like to stay up-to-date on current books so that I can give my students great recommendations. Several of my girls are always asking about mysteries or scary books. I don’t necessarily want to point them towards Goosebumps because…they’re girls. That said, this seemed like the perfect choice. The book starts right into the excitement and gives us a glimpse of Antoinette. It then jumps to our main character, Collete. She goes on a school trip to Paris and is excited to hopefully learn about her French ancestry. LIttle does she know- she will learn more than she ever anticipated! 

MASK is full of excitement and has a great pacing that middle school girls will love. I can’t wait for my school’s book fair so I can share this one with my kids. I’m already planning to purchase a copy for the library! Also- look how awesome the cover is!

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