Giveaway! Win Hysteria by Megan Miranda!

Thanks to Walker Books, I have a copy of Megan Miranda’s Hysteria to give to one of you!

 

About the book:

Mallory killed her boyfriend, Brian. She can’t remember the details of that night but everyone knows it was self-defense, so she isn’t charged. But Mallory still feels Brian’s presence in her life. Is it all in her head? Or is it something more? In desperate need of a fresh start, Mallory is sent to Monroe, a fancy prep school where no one knows her . . . or anything about her past.But the feeling follows her, as do her secrets. Then, one of her new classmates turns up dead. As suspicion falls on Mallory, she must find a way to remember the details of both deadly nights so she can prove her innocence-to herself and others.
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.(

Ready for your chance to win a copy of Hysteria by Megan Miranda? Just will out the widget below. Earn extra entries for following. US mailing addresses only.

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Review: Hysteria by Megan Miranda

 

 

Title: Hysteria

Author: Megan Miranda

May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:

Mallory killed her boyfriend, Brian. She can’t remember the details of that night but everyone knows it was self-defense, so she isn’t charged. But Mallory still feels Brian’s presence in her life. Is it all in her head? Or is it something more? In desperate need of a fresh start, Mallory is sent to Monroe, a fancy prep school where no one knows her . . . or anything about her past. But the feeling follows her, as do her secrets. Then, one of her new classmates turns up dead. As suspicion falls on Mallory, she must find a way to remember the details of both deadly nights so she can prove her innocence-to herself and others. 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.


Review:

Okay, this was a different read for me.  Mallory killed her boyfriend one rainy night during the summer, after he broke into her house.  She isn’t charged because it was ruled to be in self-defense, but Mallory isn’t sure.  She can’t remember what happened that scary, rainy night, and she’s not sure that she wants to.  Unable to sleep without the aid of sleeping pills, she suffers from the emotional trauma that she can’t put behind her.  She feels a dark, heavy presence when she’s alone, and she keeps hearing the ominous boom, boom, boom of Brian’s dying heartbeat.  When her parents send her away to Monroe, the boarding school her dad went to, she doesn’t think things can get any worse.  Boy, was she wrong.

Hysteria is a compelling, character driven story.  There is a steady building of suspense, and you aren’t sure whether Mallory is completely nuts or just suffering from PTSD.  Her escape mechanism when things get too intense for her is to run.  Run as fast and as far away from whatever it is that’s making her uncomfortable.  She runs a lot in this book.  From herself, from her memories, from her classmates.  But mostly she runs from the truth.  What happened that awful night, and why can’t she remember?

I was bewildered at Mallory’s parents’ apparent abandonment.  What the heck?  Their daughter is going through the worst time in her life, and they ship her off to boarding school.  Mallory can barely function because she is so consumed with what she did.  It colors everything in her life, as it should.  She killed someone, and she is being eaten mercilessly by remorse.  What could she have done differently?  Why did she do what she did?  The flashbacks to that night when everything went wrong  are intense and compelling, and kept me wondering how all of the pieces would fit together.  After first I wasn’t sure whether or not I liked Mallory because  she is so emotionally shattered that she comes off as uncaring and indifferent.  As the story unfolds, though, it becomes more and more evident that she is suffering but she has no one to turn to for help.  Her best friend back home isn’t responding to her emails or phone calls, and her parents are emotionally distant.  What Mallory needed was a good shrink, but all she seemed to get was a slick lawyer.  I didn’t get that.  If her parents could afford to ship her off to boarding school, they could have provided her with counseling as well.

Whether or not you enjoy Hysteria will depend on whether or not you like Mallory.  She is one messed up girl, and her coping methods are suspect at best.  Weird things are happening to her, and instead of trying to seek help, she tries to deal with all of her problems by herself.  The few times she reaches out to her parents are rebuffed.  When events become too much for her to handle, the authority figures in her life don’t believe her because of her past.  Mallory irritated at times, but I did come to like her, and I wanted her to find peace from her memories and her nightmares. The pacing is a little slow at times, but I found this a hard book to put down.

Grade:  B/B+

Review copy provided by publisher

Interview with Victoria Vane, Author of Treacherous Temptations and Giveaway

Please welcome Victoria Vane to the virtual offices today!  Victoria is here to talk about her historical romance Treacherous Temptations, and after the interview, you can enter for a chance to win a Treacherous Temptations prize pack, courtesy of Entangled Publishing!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Victoria Vane] Obsessive compulsive writer, insomniac, horse lover, romantic, Georgian junkie

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Treacherous Temptations?

[Victoria Vane] Treacherous Temptations is a dark and somewhat erotic Georgian romance with strong elements of intrigue. (Think Dangerous Liaisons with Jacobite intrigue and South Sea scandal.) It is also, in essence, my personal homage to the classic novels of the 18th century in which virtue vs. vice and the seduction of a virgin were predominate themes.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[Victoria Vane] As noted above, it was largely inspired by the book/film Dangerous Liaisons which can be seen in the primary characters of Hadley and Barbara who are closely modeled after Valmont and the Marquise de Meurteil. The innocent Mary is actually modeled after a real historical character by the same name who was also one of the great heiresses of her time.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Mary?

[Victoria Vane] Innocent and unworldly but sensible.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Hadley had a theme song, what would it be?

[Victoria Vane] HA! I LOVE this question! I am tied between two songs:

George Thorogood’s Bad to the Bone:

I broke a thousand hearts
Before I met you
I’ll break a thousand more, baby
Before I am through
I wanna be yours pretty baby
Yours and yours alone
I’m here to tell ya honey
That I’m bad to the bone

or Greg Allman’s I’m no Angel:

So you find me hard to handle … well …I’m easier to hold
So you like my spurs that jingle
And I never leave you cold
So I might steal your diamonds … I’ll … bring you back some gold
I’m no angel

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Mary is never without.

[Victoria Vane] Her common sense, although Hadley surely threatens it at times.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Hadley’s bedroom?

[Victoria Vane]  Hard to say. I don’t think anything is off limits to Hadley!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Mary’s greatest regret?

[Victoria Vane] That even though she is incredibly wealthy, she doesn’t have the freedom to live her life as she pleases.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Victoria Vane] History. Almost everything I write has a strong connection to something real that I read. This includes all of my characters.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Victoria Vane] Besides my computer? Music, caffeine, and chocolate

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Victoria Vane] That’s really a tough one! I really don’t get my socks knocked off easily, but for romance, I would have to say that two similar books really stand out in my mind: Flowers From The Storm by Laura Kinsale and The Madness Of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley. These are both excellent books that feature tortured heroes who are misunderstood by all of those around them. I really loved how these authors showed their respective heroes’ inner struggles. A close third on my list would be Firelight by Kristen Callihan which is a Victorian twist on Beauty and the Beast.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Victoria Vane] I have loved to read as long as I remember. I was particularly addicted to fairy tales and hors books when I was in elementary school, but when I was in the fourth grade one of my teachers read Lloyd Alexander’s The Black Cauldron aloud to the class. After that, I devoured the entire series and even read it aloud to my younger siblings. My next favorite book was Anna Sewell’s Black Beauty. I still cry when I read it!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Victoria Vane] I read, walk my dog, ride my horse, and play the Celtic harp.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Victoria Vane] Email: victoria.vane@hotmail.com , Web: http://authorvictoriavane.com,
Blog: http://victoriavane.wordpress.com, Facebook: Author Victoria Vane
Twitter: @authorvictoriav. I am also very active on Goodreads!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

GIVEAWAY TIME!!

Ready for your chance to win a Treacherous Temptations prize pack? Just fill out the widget below. Earn extra entries for following.

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Didn’t win? You can order a copy of Treacherous Temptations from your favorite bookseller or by clicking the link below.

About the book:

A reluctant heiress resigned to her fate… Mary Elizabeth Edwardes has one of the largest fortune’s in England, but has no desire to leave her quiet country existence… and even less to acquire a husband she cannot choose for herself.

A dissolute nobleman bent on retribution… Trapped in a duplicitous existence since scandal destroyed his fortune and family name, Lord Hadley Blanchard has spent the better part of a decade posing as a disaffected exile while spying and seducing in the service of the English Crown.

A dangerous game of seduction, and intrigue… When summoned from abroad by a former lover, Lord Hadley perceives an opportunity for vengeance at last. By employing the full measure of his seductive charm, he woos the ward of the man who destroyed his life, little knowing that winning Mary’s fortune will mean risking his own treacherous heart.