Bites

24396989Published: September 8, 2015
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Author: Website
Info: Goodreads

Mary in the mirror.
Mary in the glass.
Mary in the water.

Mary lurks in the emptiness, in the darkness . . . in the reflection. That is, until Jess unleashes her into the world. Now Mary Worth is out and her haunting is deadlier than ever.

No one is safe.

Shauna, Kitty, and Jess must band together to unearth the truth about Mary’s death to put her soul to rest for good. Their search leads them back to where it all began-to Solomon’s Folly, a place as dangerous as the ghost who died there a century and a half ago. Quick sand, hidden traps and a phantom fog are the least of their worries. To stop Mary, they need to follow a dark string of clues and piece together a gruesome mystery that spans generations.

But time is running out.

As chilling facts come to light, Mary inches ever closer to her prey. Can Jess, Shauna, and Kitty break Mary’s curse before it’s too late? Or will history repeat itself until there is no one left to call her name . . . ?  (goodreads.com)

Such a creepy book that took the story where it needed to go and ended it exactly where it needed to be ended. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.

MARY: Unleashed picked up where The Summoning left off, the Mary curse having been transferred to Jess after she sacrificed Anna to the mirror and nearly got Kitty killed in the process as well. There’s a huge strain on her and Shauna’s relationship for obvious reasons and it’s threaded throughout the story with no sign of getting better. Kind of hard to do when there’s a crazed ghost killer on the loose. Constant reminders and all of that.

Despite the fact that Shauna and Kitty are free of Mary they still pursue a way to end her, if for nothing more than to avenge Anna’s death. Kitty is far firmer in her opinions about Jess but Shauna wavers, finding herself torn between missing the friendship they used to have and missing the Jess she used to be when they were kids and coming to terms with the Jess she grew up to be, who literally got people killed.

And it’s all so incredibly realistic. Despite Mary’s creepiness and urging me away from mirrors and all of that, I think Monahan absolutely nailed the girls’ relationships in UNLEASHED. And I think that’s really important. Despite the supernatural and nominally unrealistic circumstances Monahan is showing that there are things that people can’t come back from, and this is something that is sorely lacking across all forms of entertainment. If you turn out to be an incredibly selfish person that throws others to the wolves in a bid to save yourself, you’re probably not going to have anyone covering your back after that.

Jess ended up well and truly alone after she hosed her friends with Mary. The only person she could turn to was her Aunt Dell and it was really only because of the blood relation and the shared history with Mary. Cody couldn’t stand her, Shauna and Kitty wanted nothing to do with her. She had no one left and she knew it. And she showed it. For the most part she didn’t expect forgiveness from Shauna or Kitty. She resigned herself to her fate. It was sad but at the same time satisfying. That probably sounds demented but it’s just . . . reconciliation doesn’t always happen and it didn’t happen here.

The angst that these girls felt at their situation, Jess actually getting a little snarky with Mary, Kitty really losing her patience, Shauna wanting her mom. All of these things . . . I’m totally floored by the personalities in this book. I think those stood out more than anything else. Their reactions to Mary, to each other, to the current status of their lives. All of it was just mind-blowing.

Mary’s story resolved itself nicely too. She tore through the story, caused a hell of a lot of nasty damage to persons and property and then her story finally came to a close in a rather satisfying way. It came full circle and you get a full explanation of what actually happened in the past to cause all this pain in the future. It was really satisfying.

There is an element in this story, though, that makes me wonder if there’s going to be a book three. Since Mary’s story is over maybe not another sequel but perhaps a companion? Because the field on the Hawthorne estate is addressed and seen but not ever resolved. There seems to be a whole new set of stories surrounding that family that I wonder (hope) if they’ll make it to the page. Considering all the tidbits Monahan dropped throughout UNLEASHED I truly hope so.

MARY: Unleashed is an excellent addition to the YA horror library. I wish there were more books like this, that give me chills and make me look over my shoulder but also give me phenomenal characters too.

4.5

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