Review of The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall-Great Character Growth but Lacked the Creepy Factor I Wanted

HysteriaHallThe Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall
By: Katie Alender
Release Date: August 25th 2015
Publisher: Point (Scholastic)

A copy of this book was sent to me in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:

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.

My Thoughts:
If you look over on Goodreads you’ll see that this book gets wonderful ratings but sadly I’m in the minority. It wasn’t bad by any means but I didn’t love it nor did I find it creepy. It was an easy read though that did manage to keep my interest.

This was the first book I’ve read from this author so I didn’t know what to expect past the creepy cover and title. I was sold with the setting being an old insane asylum…who doesn’t love the idea of a place being haunted by crazy ghosts? Well, turns out that most of the ghosts aren’t very crazy and the asylum was less for the mentally unstable and more for ‘troubled’ girls…girls families wanted rid of (if I’d bothered to read the summary I’d have known that). I thought this was an interesting approach though it did take away from the scare factor.

Writing this review I realize I just don’t have a ton to say about this book. Everything about it was okay but nothing blew me away. Was it worth the read? Sure! It was an enjoyable and fast read that kept me interested though I wasn’t fully invested in needing to know the outcome. I will say that the topic of grief was addressed and it was pretty heartbreaking though it didn’t impact me as much as I’d expect (since I do have a child I thought I’d be a mess reading some of this but nope).

I did appreciate the relationship between Delia and her sister and felt that the author did a great job representing a sister relationship. Delia did experience a good amount of character growth throughout the novel which I appreciated. I also enjoyed the overall message the book presented.

Final Thoughts:
The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall was worth the read but I think I went into it expecting something it was not. I wanted more creepy than I got. This book’s message was very well done and I appreciated the family relationships and the main character’s growth.


  1. says

    YAY for character development. That’s always a big plus for me when reading! I’m sorry you didn’t really get behind the rest of the book, even if it was a quick read! I totally understand those. You never regret reading them, but you wanted more!

    I haven’t read anything by Katie Alender yet, although her other series is on my TBR pile!

  2. says

    Gorgeous review Kristen. <3 I'm glad you liked this one. But so sorry that it was a bit.. boring, lol. I don't think it would be for me at all 🙂 Though it do seem a tiny bit interesting. Maybe. Not yet, anyway. Your thoughts are gorgeous, as always. <3 Thank you for sharing. I'm glad you liked the sister relationship 🙂

    • says

      It wasn’t a real stand-out but it was an entertaining and quick read. I’ve not found many books creepy lately. I don’t know if it’s just me or what.

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