Hysteria, Paperback
3 out of 5 (1 rating)


Mallory's life is falling apart. Her boyfriend was stabbed. He bled to death in her kitchen. Mallory was the one who stabbed him. But she can't remember what happened that night. She only remembers the fear ...When Mallory's parents send her away to a boarding school, she thinks she can escape the gossip and the threats.

But someone, or something, has followed her. There's the hand that touches her shoulder when she's drifting off to sleep.

A voice whispering her name. And everyone knows what happened. So when a pupil is found dead, Mallory's name is on their lips.

Her past can be forgotten but it's never gone. Can Mallory live with that?


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Thrillers (Children's/YA)
  • ISBN: 9781408834848



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With it's intriguing premise, and having enjoyed Megan Miranda's debut novel, Fracture, I had been looking forward to reading Hysteria.Mallory remembers fear, and blood, so much blood, but very few of the details about the night she killed her boyfriend. Though the consensus is she acted in self defense, her parents can barely look at her and his family stalks her in the streets. To escape the condemnation Mallory agrees to go to boarding school, hoping that she will also leave behind the vivid flashes of horror that haunts her.Hysteria starts strongly and builds around Mallory's inability to recall the circumstances that led to Brian bleeding out on her kitchen floor. Anxious, ashamed and guilt-ridden, when the nightmares that plague her each night begin to bleed into her waking life she is certain that her dead boyfriend is seeking revenge. Miranda's artfully slow reveal of details kept me off balance, just as I was convinced a ghost would reveal itself it would retreat in the cold light of day. I enjoyed this uncertainty, the blurring between reality and dream and the ever present sense of unease.The author also creates another layer of mystery involving the school headmaster's son and his cousin who trade in nasty secrets. Their hidden agenda becomes tangled in Mallory's fear and confusion with deadly results.I have to admit that in some ways I felt the author succumbed to the YA fiction stereotypes she deftly avoided in Fracture - a love triangle, a beautiful blonde mean girl, a quirky, super supportive best friend and minimal adult supervision. For me these elements weakened what is otherwise a well crafted and creative plot.Hysteria is in essence a psychological thriller but it straddles the genres of contemporary mystery and paranormal fiction and should appeal to young adult fans of both.

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