Author: K.R. Alexander
Published: August 28, 2018
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
Josie always liked visiting her grandmother in the countryside. But when her mother loses her job in the city and they’re forced to relocate along with Josie’s sister, Annie, she realizes she doesn’t like the country that much. Especially because Grandma Jeannie has some strange rules: Don’t bring any dolls into the house. And never, ever go near the house in the woods behind their yard. Soon though, Josie manages to make friends with the most popular girl in the sixth grade, Vanessa. When Vanessa eventually invites Josie back to her house to hang out, Josie doesn’t question it. Not even when Vanessa takes her into the woods, and down an old dirt road, toward the very house Grandma Jeannie had warned her about.
As Josie gets caught up in her illicit friendship with Vanessa, Annie is caught in the crossfire. What follows is a chilling tale of dark magic, friendship, and some verrrrrry creepy dolls.
This might be the scariest kids’ book I have ever read! I was seriously creeped out during the whole thing! And I was very impressed with the unique story, I felt like I was reading something new. Beryl is a terrifying villain! I could totally see her in my head and she scared me. I did feel like some loose ends were left and that keeps me from giving it 5 stars. I still don’t know who Clara is … and it makes my head want to explode! I don’t like unanswered questions! But the story still resolved itself satisfactorily and was even left open ended in a way that doesn’t bother me.
I’m a little surprised that this could be considered a kids’ book considering how mature it felt. Then again, any future children of mine will be weird enough to start out with scary books so what do I know! I think this is a great read for anyone who likes creepy stories!
The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall
Author: Katie Alender
Published: August 25, 2015
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
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 gets trapped.
And that’s when she learns that the house is also haunted.
Ghost girls wander the halls in their old-fashioned nightgowns. A handsome ghost boy named Theo roams the grounds. Delia finds that all the spirits are unsettled and full of dark secrets. The house, as well, harbors shocking truths within its walls—truths that only Delia can uncover, and that may set her free.
But she’ll need to act quickly, before the house’s power overtakes everything she loves.
This is the second time I’ve read this book and I’m so glad I went back to it. Since it was so long ago, I barely remembered anything about the story. Katie Alender has established herself as a solid horror author. She does a great job with atmosphere. Her settings create the perfect atmospheres that push her stories forward. Hysteria Hall … why don’t I have a rich relative who leaves me an old mental hospital? The story was simple, but unique. The twists were surprising and unpredictable. My only real issue with this story is Delia’s parents. It just annoyed me how much they overreacted to her little stunt. I added tips to my future parenting notes after reading this book. But overall, it was creepy, it was fascinating, and I really liked it a lot! I think it’s a great book to hand to teens to encourage their love of reading!