- File Size: 1910 KB
- Print Length: 192 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: August 18, 2010
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00400MQ9Y
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,285 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Scary Mary (The Scary Mary Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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Scary Mary is a young adult paranormal horror. It’s all about a teenager who has the ability to hear ghosts. Hear, but not see. Not only that, but she acts as an ‘amplifier’ for them. Ie: Their powers get stronger when she’s around. Needless to say, when being in high school is already a royal pain, this just makes things even worse.
However, Mary has a good friend who accepts her abilities (even if doesn’t necessarily fully believe in them), and a grandmother with a touch of the gift herself. So she’s not alone in the world by any means. It is these two people who keep her going with things get rough after Mary inadvertently scares the bejesus out of a group of her peers. Peers that include the new boy who just moved to town that had been getting under her skin in a good way.
Scary Mary isn’t a book that’s actually scary in any way. But, there is a good dose of creepiness factor that will delight those who like to dabble around the edges of horror. The story isn’t exactly hard to figure out, but it’s enjoyable to read nonetheless. The pacing is decent. Most of the characters are easy to relate to for the intended age range.
My favorite part was definitely the dog. There was a definite yuck factor involved, but once you got past that, the idea of the dog was awesome. I mean, it’s pretty much the perfect pet, even if it’s not exactly guard dog material.
A light, uncomplicated, mildly creepy read. As the start to a series, Scary Mary succeeds as well as read as a standalone. S.A. Hunter’s writing is not outstanding as of yet, but the author knows how to spin a good yarn. It also is a complete story that stands alone. There’s no need to read the next book in the series. Which is precisely why I probably will do so.
Overall, definitely worth the read for the intended age range, and probably worth the read for older adults as well. (Though older adults won’t quite get the horror oomph they’re probably looking for.)
So, off my soapbox and back to my review...
The story structure was poorly developed, and the plot was twisted just to create scenes that didn't necessarily flow. Ditto for dialogue. There were also a few situational errors, for example; ... Gran calmly came into the room, reached up to the smoke detector, and wrenched out the battery. ... How tall was her grandmother?! There were a few of those, and I find them pretty unforgivable.
A pity, because the characters are quite good. The idea great, and the story could have been much more engaging. The writing needs more work to be good, and perhaps some editing would help. Hopefully, this author has improved over time, and this first book in the series was the weakest.
Top international reviews
But Mary really is different; she can hear ghosts, and when a ghost in Cyrus' house starts causing mayhem Mary is the only one that can get rid of it.
This was a fun story to read. It's fast-paced and full of ghost hunting action. I liked Mary and her sarcy voice, sometimes she came across as very immature but then she is a teenager so I can understand that. I admired the way she went after the ghost though. If it was me I would have just left Cyrus to it after he blamed her for damage she didn't cause.
Clunky writing slowed the story down occasionally. Some bits read as though the author was making notes about what they wanted to happen, but then never actually got round to writing it.
"She remembered that she didn’t have his number or his address and got both from him. He got her info as well. After a few seconds of just staring dumbly at the scrap of paper with his address and number scrawled on it, Mary said to her shoes, “Well, I’ll see you this weekend."
Other bits were just awkward and there were points when I couldn't understand the things people were doing - why was Mary blamed for all the altercations with the other students? why did Mary stay for the seance? Why did Cyrus blame her for the damage?
The writings not brilliant but I enjoyed the story. It's quick, fun and action packed but I don't think I'd go out of my way to read the rest of the series.
My worries about the book weren't exactly proven groundless. Many of the characters were typically two dimensional. "Cheerleader" Vicky was about as deep as a puddle. The "BFF" had so much impact on the story that I've completely forgotten her name. Cyrus, the "Hot New Guy" was too nice to evoke any realistic empathy. However, Mary wasn't half bad. She was a gothic-dressing, black-lipstick-wearing, clairaudient "freak". That in itself isn't exactly original, but there were aspects to her character which I got along with. My favourite thing about her was her ghostly pet dog called Chowder!
The story itself was by-the numbers, but not in a really bad way. It was nice to have some bubblegum for my eyes to chew on. There were some nice, unpredictable elements thrown in along the way, too. I liked that Mary could only hear ghosts, but not see them. I loved the idea of haunted items (especially the haunted desk in then guidance counsellor's office) and the ending wasn't what I'd dreaded.
Overall, if you're looking for a read that you can swallow whole in an hour after a busy, bookless couple of weeks, then Scary Mary might be for you. It's not great literature by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a nice little story with some nifty little quirks mixed in.
I have to say, I agree.
Scary Mary reads like every Scary Movie film made. Predictable, yes; entertaining, yes; going to stay in you mind for more than ten minutes afterwards, no. The characters were all comfortable cliches - Mary the outcast, Rachel her wacky friend, Vicky the evil cheerleader, there was nothing groundbreaking or original. But I think sometimes that's nice. It's like watching a film where you know all the lines before the actors speak them, but you enjoy it any way.
The plot was reasonable, though the signposting was so obvious I had the ending figured out about three chapters before, and some of the friendship drama was a bit random - Cy ran a bit hot and cold at times, and Rachel's decision to randomly stomp off seemed a bit contrived to make Mary have to go somewhere alone. Again, it comes back to the cliche thing. Scary Mary has all of them, but if you go in knowing that ('Carrie 2 bad. Bad in a really good way.') it's still an entertaining read.
It didn't take me long at all to read - I finished off most of it while in the bath, before the water even got cold - and while that's partly because it's quite short, it's also because the writing style is fairly engaging and easy going. There were some clumsy passages - a few bits of unintentional repetition and some phrasing that didn't read right, which comes from being copy-edited not properly edited - but overall the writing was pretty clean and straight forwards. The formatting and copy-editing were good too - I didn't spot any mistakes, and I've read published books that weren't as neatly formatted for Kindle.
And this one's free, so definitely worth checking out. If you hate it, it won't have cost you anything but the time it took you to realise. And like my sister, Charlie (who has bought the sequel), you might just find it's your new favourite book.
I had guessed the ending by the time Mary revisits the basement, so I didn't bother finishing it. The characters were shallow and a bit cliché (goth girl with special psychic powers who uses "drinking blood" and other Satanic comments as a defence to being harassed by the jocks and head cheerleader). I'm also guessing she comes out on top at the end, but no-one knows how amazing she is except her two friends, and how much she's changed since the experience.. yawn...
It doesn't offer your usual scares, nor the chills that you would from say, an Adam Nevill book. I thought the beginning was especially awful, where Mary's speaking to her guidance counsellor. Her best friend was also irritating, coming out with comments that I found a bit idiotic.
Maybe I'm just too old at the ripe old age of 25 to enjoy teen horror/romances anymore. Overall it was readable, but lacking substance and originality.
Mary has a special gift, she can hear ghosts, and she has heard them from birth. Mary was labelled as a freak by her school peers when she realised that not everybody can hear them.
With her pale completion and black hair and dark clothes and being brought up by her fortune-telling grandma, Mary is subjected to all sorts of abuse, even the teachers turn a blind eye. Marys retaliation means she see Mr. Landa the Schools counsellor for her behaviour.
After the first meeting of the term with Mr. Landa, Mary meets new boy Cy and they become friends, that is until she realises that his new house harbours a malevolent ghost and Cy freaks out and doesn't want to know Mary anymore.
Though Mary feels that she has to help Cy and his family before people get hurt or worse, even if it means that Cy never speaks with her again.
It was written well and with feeling and I will be definitely be reading the sequel Stalking Shadows:
It's a high school story, with evil cheerleaders and jocks as expected, but something about Mary and her friend, Rachel, kept me reading and I am all for a good cliche if it is written well, and these are.
The pace is slightly off for me at the end, it goes from a few bubbles to full-on boil in a heartbeat and the action at the end made me wonder how it all got covered up, but it was such a fun read that I'll forgive it the Poltergeist-like chaos at the end.
S.A. Hunter, good writer, left a few 'romantic' loose ends for the sequel, Stalking Shadows, which I have just gone and bought!
My disappointment really comes from searching for a decent, scary novel. Which this is not. It's short, it took me about an hour and half to 2 hours to read. It is incredibly basic and the most easygoing read I've had in quite some time (probably since I was about 9 years old). It reminds me of some horror books that I would read as a child. I wouldn't even dub it as a young adult book, as young adult books I have read typically have a lot more depth, descriptive text, and character development than this. All the characters are one dimensional and pretty much every line they speak is full of wise-crack sarcasm. The story line isn't frightening but rather written in a sort of a commical style. Yes the blurb indicates that the story is about young teens, but I was just expecting more. They also say don't judge a book by it's cover. The cover of this book does not reflect the style or immaturity of the story, I feel. So for me personally, a two star story.
HOWEVER, for a child, probably from ages 10 to 13, who is interested in reading horror stories then it's not a bad place to start. It's simple to read, it has elements of the supernatural without being too serious and dark, it has no sexual references, and minus the word 'crap' I don't recall any unsuitable language for youngsters, and at this time of writing, is a free download. It probably deserves around 4 stars if this is a book aimed at youngsters, but I'm not sure if it is or not. If it is then adding that to the blurb would be useful. At the moment it isnt there though, so 3 stars. I have spotted there is a second Scary Mary book, I shall not be purchasing it though.
But if you prevail til the end, you may find something you like. I did suprisingly, thought I was tempted to give up many times before the end. Now I'm tempted to get the next book. After halfway through the book, it does become more bearable to read and at times enjoyable.
Looking for something serious, not the book for you. Looking for something that is easy, short and fun, could be for you.
It was a well written story of Mary coming to terms with her "gift", her interaction with Rachel her friend and her relationship with her Gran. Hopefully the author will tell us more of her Gran and her customers. The story has a little bit of everything in it, romance, drama, suspense with a healthy dose of comedy. I look forward to reading more and watching these characters grow in statue and years. Well done.
It was ok, nothing too exciting but was readable.
It wasn't a very long story it's about a young girl Mary who can hear ghosts every one at school avoids her and thinks she is strange that's where her name comes from (scary Mary)
Anyway she befriends a new school boy cy and goes to his house 1 night where's she hears a malevolent voice who she fears is haunting her new friends home.
From there she has to race against time to save her friend.....
Like I said it is readable and I will probably read the 2nd instalment stalking shadows sometime in the future but I wouldn't jump up and down and say you must read this book..
It hooked me from the word Go. It didn't take long for me to get into it. I was so hooked i literally couldn't put it down. I read the whole book in an hour, and it's defiantly the perfect length and it doesn't drag on. Things pop up as you read thought which you will not have thought could happen. I'd defiantly recommend this too my friends - it's worth the read.
As for the price! it was amazing... i was shocked that a book this good was FREE! I loved the book so much I've bought the next book and it's defiantly not letting me down. S.A hunter is a writer to watch out for! I'll be one to search for more books by this writer! You should defiantly take a chance and get this book. You WON'T be disappointed!
However, the story is predictable and the author needs to consider the "show, don't tell" rule of writing, as far too much is just explained outright to the audience. The characters are all rather two-dimensional cliches and I didn't really warm to a single one, always a priority for me.
Despite this, I managed to make it to the end, and was vaguely curious about Mary's fate, so it clearly has something going for it. It is a good idea, just needed more work on characters, dialogue and pacing. Try Kelley Armstrong's darkest powers series instead.
A short but interesting read. Drags at a few places - but is a wonderfully pleasant read. Loved the bit about the dog - that was so well written.
A few typos - (just how does one spell faeces? *LOL* ), nothing to distract from the story being told. I'd say this author has potential, just needs a good proof-reader to polish the rough edges.
Will I buy / download another book by the same author? Probably YES.
To anyone hesitating to download this book, give it a whirl - read it.
This is one book that will stay on my Kindle and be read several times.