I received this book from the publisher/tour host in exchange of an honest review.
This was one of my most OMG I NEED TO READ books of 2021 and I am so happy I got to read it earlier. I absolutely flew through the book, it was just what I needed. A book with a dash of romance, with horror movies, pranks, and tons of exciting moments. Oh, and a big twist! Throughout the book I will use spoiler tags. I really need to talk about those things, so don’t click on things unless you want to know all or most as I will still be vague.
Meet Rachel, a year ago the girl went through something horrific and she has now moved to another part of New York to get away from it all. She gets a chance to start all over again, though I did agree that maybe a fancysmancy school is not the way to go. Haha. But she finds out something when during a party there is a prank. I loved how she found the Mary Shelley Club. More on that in a bit. I really loved Rachel. She was a fun and sweet girl, and my heart broke that she had to go through something horrific. I loved how she clicked with Saundra who was totally an opposite for this new Rachel. I did have to say that as the book went on I wanted to shake Rachel at times for the decisions she made for instance her Fear Test, in which she lets a girl who bullies her go through a similar kind of thing that Rachel went through a year ago, I found it very disgusting and a big WTF. I am glad that someone else of the club also mentioned it and I wished that Rachel had listened….
I loved the idea of a club about horror and pranks. The pranks I am maybe a bit on the fence on, I do like the idea of pranking people and I do love that they used horror tropes to make a prank work, but I am still unsure if it is so kind. I mean a prank should be fun for all parties, not just the one doing it. And in this one our club goes pretty far to get their revenge on people they aren’t a fan of. But I do love the club and love that they love horror. While, I am not such a big horror buff as they are and I probably would have gotten the punishment for being scared all the time, I still would have loved to join and watch the movies and talk about horror movies. I also love that the club is called the Mary Shelley club and that we get tons of information about her and the whys of the club being named with her name. Haha, hope that makes sense, I am quite tired while writing this review.
The various characters: Saundra, she was just the best, and I really liked her. She is funny and while I am normally not a big fan of gossips, I still loved that she magically knew all the rumours, all the little tidbits on everyone. Felicity, who was pretty horrible throughout the book. I had kind of hoped that the girl would bond over their love for horror. For spooky things. Instead Felicity keeps being a bitch, later we understand her feeling a bit more… but still. Girl, please. Bram, I am still not sure on my feelings about him. On the one hand, cute guy and I recognise the doing various masks for various people, I do the same thing. I am only myself with myself. But on the other hand.. Bram was frustrating with how he acted. How cold he was. Thayer, I don’t really have much to say about this guy. I don’t know… I am neutral towards him. Freddie, OMG I just loved that guy, he was my favourite and I hate (but also love because it was so well-written) that he turned out to be a manipulative little rat.
. Despite, as you can see, not being a fan of most of the characters, for some reason it worked for me. It made me all the more curious about them and made me more invested in the story. Funny how that works!
The book begins with a scary scene and it ends with it as well. Throughout the book we get a great build-up to the finale and the author did a great job on it, though maybe it could have started a bit earlier than 60%. 😛
Throughout the book I had 2 suspects. One quite soon, the other came in a bit later. Two suspects and one who could be the culprit. I had various theories on why someone would make the pranks go too far, and while in the end I was wrong on a few of my theories, I did manage to get some things right which had me squeeing in delight. YAS. Plus, I love love it when authors make it seem like it is totally x or y character but then BOOM no it was actually q! Haha!
The beginning of the book was super exciting, and while I was sad that we didn’t find out what happened to Rachel immediately, we do get hints and quite soon she tells us (or well the club) what has happened. That poor thing! I just wanted to hug her during that moment, how horrific that she had to go through that. Now a spoiler, because I NEED to discuss this but I don’t want to spoil it to all. We find out in the end that Matthew was part of a Mary Shelley Club chapter, namely the Long Island one. SHOCK! While I was thinking it may just be that, I quickly shook that thought away because who in the hell would go into a house of someone for a fear test? Break in? WTF? I was pretty pissed at Freddie, and I am pretty pissed thinking that there may be no rest for Rachel because as we learn, a Fear Test is never done alone… Really, wtf people? You break into a house, get a knife, and then you get pissed at someone when self-defence is used and someone dies? She didn’t know it was a test. She thought she would die. She thought she would be broken and dead for her mom to find. Sorry, do you want her to just lie there and undergo that? Fuck that. Screw you couple of *insert some more words that are very angry*. This poor girl is broken. She has nightmares. She feels guilty and bad. She tries to douse herself in murder and horror just to get rid of the fear. She didn’t murder your friend. He died because he made a horrible and terrible decision.
All in all, I really really liked this one. I just flew through in one bit, it was that amazing, I couldn’t stop. I had to know more. I could probably talk more and more about this book, but I think I have said the most important things. I would highly recommend this book to all.