Review Detail

 
Young Adult Fiction
(Updated: August 06, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall

I'm a huge sucker for paranormal ghost tales. My favorites have to be the ones with subtle horror elements that haunt you later. THE DEAD GIRLS OF HYSTERIA HALL does this and much more!

Delia finds herself on a forced family outing to a house she inherited from an aunt she used to be pen-pals with. Only this isn't just any house but rather a former insane asylum with a reputation for being haunted. Delia finds out the hard way that the house is very haunted only now she's one of those stuck there. She finds other ghosts of former patients haunt the premises including a cute guy who is outside. Then her family returns and only then does she find out the house isn't done with them yet. But she'll do anything she can to make sure her younger sister won't be the next victim.

What worked: I really enjoyed this spooky tale with just enough horror elements to give me nightmares! Delia starts off as a self-absorbed teen but after the 'accident' she finds she has to set that aside if only to keep her sanity. Her flawed character makes her likable and one I really wanted to succeed in cracking the house's secrets.

The house is a huge character in this story. Alender does a great job showing the centuries old asylum with the assortment of ghosts that still linger within it's fading halls. She gives the house an evocative touch. There's an evil presence within the walls that causes madness to afflict not only the ghosts but the living as well.

Delia's plan to figure out what her dead aunt was really trying to tell her has her reaching out to the other ghosts. Sometimes these exchanges work out and others, not so well. But just when readers 'think' they get who might behind the haunted secrets, Alender throws a curve ball their way. Not all is what it seems. Who can Delia trust? Or not trust?

The only thing I wished for was more interaction between Delia and the cute ghost outside the house. There is one scene that held so much promise but then she goes back inside and nothing else happens between them until much later.

This fast-paced paranormal has just enough horror elements without going over the top. Intriguing characters set in a haunted asylum filled with secrets. The final confrontation had me guessing right to the very end. Readers who love a good horror tale, won't be disappointed.

Good Points
1. Spooky horror
2. Ghostly tale set in a haunted former insane asylum
3. Fast-paced paranormal
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