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.
OPINION: Intense, gripping, and smart, Hysteria is a great thriller by a talented author. With enough hints to let some of the picture come together, but plenty of twists to also keep you guessing, this is a hard to predict, satisfying read. Very mentally focused in a lot of ways, and navigating that line between reality and paranoia in the most stunning of ways, Hysteria is a seat of the chair, read in one sitting kind of book.
Mallory is an awesome character, a girl who has her stuff together at least until the night her boyfriend dies. She isn’t carrying around tons of baggage previous to that, and she tries to keep it together even after. She has an awesome best friend, someone who brings out the good in her even while still letting her be her normal, sort of reserved self. But then Brian dies, and everything hits the fan, and her story arc is so fabulously done. She falls apart, she makes mistakes, she isn’t always totally likeable and yet, she gets stronger as things progress too. She has a totally well rounded development, and Miranda has nailed her story arc.
Then there’s Reid, a totally fresh type of love interest in a sea of cocky jerks. He is so real, so normal, and such a total sweetheart. He is intensely caring, and though there are certainly moments where you want to just hug him and protect him, he has such a big role in the book in a lot of ways, and is a boy who has stolen my heart. I loved watching him give Mallory strength, but I loved, more, the ways she was able to figure things out on her own without relying on him either. Their interactions and play offs are beautifully handled, with a rawness to them that shines.
While this is a relatively short book, it holds nothing back and is a potent tale in such a short span of pages. Miranda has a knack for that, and she once again creates a strong and palpable emotional air that will suck readers right in. With a hard to predict who done it kind of thing, blended into a reality versus hallucination kind of element, Hysteria is a book that stuck with me long after being finished. I couldn’t get enough of these characters, and was once again left feeling so much, from anger at some characters to heartbreak at others, and wanting more just to have more.
Source: ARC received from author in exchange for an honest review
Reading level: Ages 14 and up
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Publication Date: February 5, 2013