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Bloody Mary #2

Mary: Unleashed

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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 . . . ?

248 pages, Hardcover

First published September 1, 2015

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About the author

Hillary Monahan

14 books330 followers
Hillary Monahan's YA debut MARY: The Summoning, a YA Horror retelling of the Bloody Mary myth, sold at auction to Hyperion and hit number two on the New York Times e-book bestseller list. MARY: Unleashed is out as of fall 2015. She's also published THE AWESOME with Ravenstone under the name Eva Darrows, which received starred reviews in both Kirkus and PW.

Her next three publications are an adult horror novel in the GODS & MONSTERS series for Solaris, due out in December of 2016. Spring of 2017 will see the YA contemporary DEAD LITTLE MEAN GIRL under the name Eva Darrows published through Harlequin Teen. Fall of 2017 sees the YA horror THE WAGON WITCH'S APPRENTICE under Hillary Monahan through Delacorte/Random House.

Inquiries can be addressed to: hillaryjmonahan at gmail dot com

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5 stars
268 (35%)
4 stars
283 (37%)
3 stars
167 (22%)
2 stars
23 (3%)
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12 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 140 reviews
Profile Image for Melissa Chung.
904 reviews324 followers
October 31, 2016
Yes! What a horrifying conclusion to this amazingly written duology. I of course have heard of Bloody Mary growing up. When I was six years old, a friend told me the story of Bloody Mary. I was so scared to see her in the mirror, I did the opposite of what you are supposed to do. I ran into the bathroom with the light off to pee and ended up accidently peeing on the toilet lid. TMI I know, that's how freaked out I was. As an adult I know better, you check the toilet lid first LOL because you can still see Bloody Mary in the mirror with the light on ;)

I read the first book in this duology at the beginning of this year. In Mary: The Summoning, we learn about Jessica and how she relates to Bloody Mary. We witness the summoning of this ghostly presence and bite our nails at the chaos that ensues in Mary's wake. We witness Shauna's unfortunate shadow. The loss of a friend. The alienation of another.

In this book we follow Shauna and Kitty to the ends of the earth in search for a solution to getting rid of the nightmare that lurks in the mirror. What we find is a unbelievable back story that is not only horribly sad, but well deserved.

I have to say... this duology is the scariest YA horror I have ever read. I thought The Merciless by Danielle Vega was pretty scary, but nothing in the YA horror genre beats this duology. You not only get atmosphere, but a follow through. This isn't a dainty horror where the kids are afraid and there is a happy ending. THIS BOOK IS SCARY! Bloody Mary will hook her claws into you and not let go. Taking body parts for her own.

I will read anything Hillary Monahan writes. She is my horror Queen.
November 21, 2015
This was a really compelling end to Bloody Mary's story.

While reading this, I totally felt as if the history of Bloody Mary was true! I'm a fan of the first book, so I had some expectations for this one. Let's just say that my expectations were surpassed. :)

The main character, Shauna wants nobody to get hurt anymore. However, with Mary out of the mirror... It was sort of impossible. My imagination was so active while reading this because the author's description of Mary was so good, it felt as if it was real! They continued to run from her, confront her and all, but nothing was working to keep her out.

They band together with many other people. There were more casualties, but I already knew there would be some of those, so it didn't come as a shock. They finally succeed in vanquishing her. However, I still have questions... What about that land? That land which felt like it was moving? What about that, huh? I wonder if there's a book for that...

I love the ending of this book. It enlightened me and it was really dramatic. This was definitely a good read.
Profile Image for Paige  Bookdragon.
938 reviews610 followers
December 7, 2015

Obviously, as what the title is saying, Bloody Mary (the vindictive ghost who haunts Shauna,Jess and Kitty) has now been unleashed in the world.That means she can actually hunt people without using the mirror.

It should have been scary, but it's not.

I was actually expecting to be spooked (and mind you, I did read this book at night because ambiance is important) but I was a tad disappointed.

Some characters were whiny (and not the endearing kind), some are idiots and most of them are bland. Really,the only character here who has some spice is Bloody Mary (and she's dead and the villain of the story...)

Profile Image for Patty Killion.
254 reviews45 followers
October 28, 2015
A full and scary 4 stars!

The second and final book in this Bloody Mary series.

I continued to turn the pages of this second book as fast as I did in the first book, "Mary: The Summoning".

It was a delightfully scary ghost story!!!

btw....You just might be able to look in a mirror now.....maybe!!!!
Profile Image for Grace.
931 reviews73 followers
November 2, 2022
I thought this was much better than the first one. It was creepier and the plot was more interesting. I still hated Jess, but at least the other characters did now too 😂
Profile Image for Mehsi.
11.9k reviews361 followers
February 24, 2016
 Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary.

So, funny story, I was planning on reading this one today (Friday 30th October). But last night I couldn't sleep and thus decided to read this. And then 2 hours later I closed the book. Did I sleep much afterwards? Hahaha, no, not really. But I really really wanted to read this book, and I decided to take the consequences that come with reading a horror book at around 1am with it. :)

I am really glad I read the book, but I do have to say that I prefer the previous book over this one. The previous one was so much more creepy, Mary was way awesome, you had creepy mirrors and other reflective stuff, the hauntings were super super spooky and had me on the edge for quite a bit. It was a true Bloody Mary book. The deaths that happened there felt so much better executed. While here it just felt like some slasher movie, and while it was still gory enough for me, I still wish for something different. And sure, Mary is still creepy, we still have a few occasions of mirrors/reflective glass, but it is now mostly running/seeking out what is wrong with Mary, why is she haunting people, and to make sure that Mary doesn't do anything bad any more. And yeah, that was fun for a bit,
but it got a bit boring after a while. Especially since I kind of expected some epic ending, and was disappointed it was all this simple as just doing that thing. Even the characters were surprised and are now wondering about stuff.

The characters were really great, we got Shauna, Kitty, Cody, Jess (urgh I hated her), Dell, and also several newer characters that were fun to meet. Shauna was pretty good, and I loved how she tried her all. Tried to help Kitty. Tried to help when stuff really hit the fan. I loved Cody, I was so happy for her and she is such an interesting character.

The only character I didn't like was Jess. It seems that she just couldn't give a rat's ass about other people. I hate that attitude, and I find it disgusting that she would do all that. I am still not entirely sure if she just was stupid, or if she really craved the attention she so sought out.

The book is (once again) peppered with letters that tell us about Mary. There are letters from various people, and they were pretty interesting to read. Quite soon I already had a vague suspicion what happened to Mary, and also who did it. As the letters continued, as the story progressed that vague suspicion turned into a clear image and I just was waiting for the end to come to let me know if I was right or not. :)

What else? Ah yes, I have to give bonus points to an amazing cover design. With the hardcover you have a sleeve with one image, but you remove the sleeve, you will see a totally new cover on the front of the book. :D

Would I recommend this book/series? Yes, yes I would. If you want to be creeped out, if you never want to look in a mirror or anything reflective after this one, then be sure to check this one out!

Review first posted at http://twirlingbookprincess.com/
Profile Image for Christine .
405 reviews1 follower
September 2, 2015
I loved it! Not just for young adults!! A lot of action too and it was written very well, felt I was there! Now I need to go get my salt.....
Profile Image for Josiah.
3,211 reviews146 followers
November 4, 2019
What a debut Hillary Monahan had. MARY: The Summoning, released in 2014, was one of the best horror novels I've read, a labyrinth of claustrophobic action scenes and profound metaphors relayed via the story of a notorious American haint who was more frightening in Ms. Monahan's novel than in any other version I've encountered. This Mary Worth is a grotesque, black-toothed ghoul who fixates on individual victims for years without allowing a day's respite. Shauna learned that in the first novel, after her friend Jess persuaded her and two other teen girls to perform a summoning in the bathroom mirror to get a glimpse of Bloody Mary in all her feral "glory." Jess's carefully researched methods of confining Mary to the mirror failed, and the vile harpy began stalking Shauna, showing up not only in mirrors, but any vaguely shiny surface. On the verge of a nervous breakdown but knowing her mother wouldn't believe her claims about Mary, Shauna turned to Cody Jackson for help, a mid-thirties spinster whom Mary hounded for years...until turning her attention to Shauna. A fierce, paranoid loner, Cody had advice to keep Shauna alive for a while, but it was Jess who ultimately delivered Shauna from the curse. Attempting another summoning in hopes of foisting Mary off on another girl, Jess unwittingly became the ghost's new target. Shauna wishes she could forget about Jess; the popular, assertive teen is getting what she deserves after dragging Bloody Mary into their lives in the first place, but can Shauna actually leave Jess to a long, torturous death at Mary's filthy hands?

Jess has advantages Shauna did not during her own bout with Mary. Jess is a descendant of the Worth lineage, and can consult her elderly aunt Dell for ways to keep Mary at bay until they configure a permanent solution. Dell refers Jess, Shauna, and their friend Kitty to the Hawthorne family in the town of Solomon's Folly. Elizabeth Hawthorne, one of Mary's tormenters during her natural life, was connected in some way to the mysterious circumstances of Mary's 1864 death, presumably at the hands of Pastor Philip Starkcrowe. If Jess can piece together the historical account, she may discover a way to disable Mary's supernatural reign of terror once and for all. Shauna and Kitty are loath to incur Mary's interest by spending time near Jess, but their safeguard is taken away one night when Jess makes a critical error, allowing Mary to escape the mirror and remain in the real world. The putrid monster is no longer restricted to shiny surfaces in her pursuit of Jess and the others.

Dell and Cody are crucial assets as Mary closes in on her coterie of victims. Anyone hunted by Mary knows the horror of it, but Dell and Cody spent enough years as helpless prey, and will risk death or disfigurement to stop the cycle. Conversations with Sheriff Hawthorne about his family's checkered past unearth relevant information surrounding Mary's death and burial. If they can find her desiccated body and incinerate it, maybe Bloody Mary's days of causing torment will end. Mary isn't ignorant about the plan; she's ready to fight with every ounce of insanity in her body, and as Shauna and her companions key in on the final solution to the mystery, Mary unleashes her most stomach-turning assault yet on one member of their group. The brutality wrought by Bloody Mary on her victims inside and out will never fade, but can they deliver a Mary-free future for every young girl from now on?

MARY: The Summoning was a disciplined, painfully evocative thriller loaded with allegorical import. MARY: Unleashed has moments of deeply unsettling horror, but isn't as effective. Mary shows up less, and as a result this book isn't as claustrophobic as the first. We despise Mary in that book, craving to see her hurt as badly as she harms Shauna and the other girls; the desperation of Shauna's situation feels raw and uncomfortably personal to the reader. Perhaps we hate Mary in this book too, but only because of the graphic violence she inflicts on her final victim. If you've read the book, you know what I speak of. MARY: Unleashed is less immediate and intuitive than MARY: The Summoning; it features more research and abstract theorizing than ingenious new venues for Mary's attacks, but I'd probably rate it two and a half stars. I wish there were a stronger conclusion after that barnburner of a first novel, but the duology is worth reading to its end.
Profile Image for Paige Bradish.
336 reviews10 followers
November 8, 2015
I borrowed Mary: Unleashed by Hillary Monahan from work and this is my honest review.

This book is the much-anticipated sequel to Monahan’s first book, Mary which is about a group of girls who decide to summon the legend of “Bloody Mary.” One girl in particular, Jess decides to summon Mary because she happens to be an ancestor of hers, and Jess wants to learn more about her. The problem is, her and her three friends get a lot more than they bargained for when Mary latches on and terrorizes them throughout the whole book, she even kills a few people along the way.

The second book follows the two surviving friends, I will not release names so as not to spoil the first book. But this sequel is these two girls adventure in trying to solve Mary’s death in order for her to stop terrorizing the human world forever. The process of these two girls finding, and collecting clues as to how Mary died, and ways to possibly get rid of her was intriguing. Between many chapters there were old letters for us readers to read, so we felt almost as if we were apart of the hunt too.

Even before hearing about these books I was extremely interested in the legend of Bloody Mary. This story brought back memories, to back when I was in camp as a little girl. My friends and I used to lock ourselves in the camp bathroom, turn the lights off and play around with calling out bloody mary. Nothing ever happened, but I remember being so scared every time I walked into the bathroom, for fear that she was going to pop up. Thank god that phase didn't last long.

I cannot say much else about this book without giving away spoilers, but I must say it was very well written, and extremely intense. I was biting my nails, and hanging onto the end of every page the whole time I was reading. I also loved the fact that I got the chills every time Mary was described in the book, or when the girls knew she was around by hearing her moans or smelling her, that brought me back to being scared at camp too and I loved every second of it!
Profile Image for Kelly Hager.
3,101 reviews130 followers
September 14, 2015
You may remember that the first book in this series (The Summoning) is one of my favorites from last year. It's intensely creepy and when it ended, I was so desperate for the second book.

Fortunately, this last book (I hate duologies! I mean, yay sequels but why are trilogies not hot anymore?) was just perfect. It was even creepier than the first one (which I wouldn't have thought was possible) and was just insanely fun.

I am so in love with this duology and, while I wish it could somehow be a whole series, I am definitely excited to see whatever Hillary Monahan does next.

Profile Image for Jojobean.
310 reviews
July 16, 2017
Youtube Video Review: https://youtu.be/mm2DuhLWIqE

. Not as scary as the first one but still creeped me out
. This book is about finding out about Mary's life and where her body is
. Takes place a few weeks after the first book
. New characters are Dell and Cody who I love.
. Still don't like Jess. She's still selfish and only thinks of herself.
. The reason why Mary rose is seriously messed up.
. Lots more letters written by different people like Constance, Elizabeth Hawthorne, Constance's husband.
Profile Image for Heather.
854 reviews263 followers
November 10, 2015
I definitely enjoyed this sequel. It was exactly what I wanted. It was sad to lose some important characters but it made it better. The only thing I wish would've happened was for me, as a reader, to see Mary finally find some peace. The whole series is definitely worth reading!
Profile Image for Becca.
418 reviews21 followers
September 26, 2015
I LOVE this series. LOVE. IT.

In this installment we get to learn more about Mary, and why she is doing what she is doing. The characters in this book are so fantastic. Even the super creepy ones. I cannot say too much because you should read this one for yourself so you can have a super scary experience...heheh Some one else might read this and think "she was off her rocker it's not that scary"....well to me it was!

I love reading scary books, they just make me happy. I know I have said that before, and I know people will think that is weird, but it does. I love the thrill that comes from reading a scary book.

The thought of Bloody Mary in the mirror is scary, but having her outside of the mirror is a far scarier idea. I love the connections that are brought to light in this book. I love how we get to read more "letters" from the past. I really like it when books connect the past with the present.

There is so much going on in this book. Everyone is fighting for their life...no one is safe. Mary is every where. Reading this book kept me on my toes the whole time. The author does a great job of making you feel like you need to investigate every noise that happens in the house at night, while not wanting to move for fear it may be "something"...hehe

Jess is more annoying in this installment than she was in the first book. She is selfish, and just plain stupid. In the midst of a crisis she is not someone you want to have with you. Shauna and Kitty on the other hand know how to stick together and fight.

Mary is just plain creepy. CREEPY. The author does a great job describing everything without getting to wordy. I have to admit a few times while reading I was so engrossed in the book that my heart was beating fast, my hands started sweating, and any movement in my house made me jump. It was FANTASTIC.

If you like thrillers this is a great series to read!!!
Profile Image for Kathleen.
Author 11 books522 followers
February 5, 2017
What a great sequel! I loved Mary: The Summoning and was really excited that there was a sequel. Ghost stories are great, but learning what happened in the past, discovering the truth, is awesome! A well-written, creepy, roller coaster of a ride. A sad and terrifying look at lost friendship and regrets.
Profile Image for Persy.
810 reviews18 followers
May 13, 2021
“No mirrors. No glass. No reflections. Scars on the skin. Scars on the soul. Fear the only constant companion.”

This was a GREAT sequel and tied the story up with such a satisfying bow. Everything was fair, well explained, and held my rapt attention up until the bitter end.

There is no shortage of gore and gruesome descriptions, which gave just as cinematic an experience as the first Bloody Mary. If you’re a fan of horror and you haven’t tried this duo, GET ON IT. 10/10
Profile Image for Elle Maruska.
232 reviews90 followers
April 14, 2018
More of a 3.5. I didn't enjoy this quite as much as the first one but it was still a fun, scary read. I loved learning more about the town of Solomon's Folly and all its ghosts and I loved the characters...how they were forced to make difficult choices and how they reacted in realistic, sometimes heartbreaking ways. A good conclusion to the story of Mary Worth!
Profile Image for Emily.
1,265 reviews334 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
February 25, 2019
I enjoyed the first book in this series, but this one is not working for me. I gave it about 100 pages, and it dragged for all of it.
Profile Image for Selina.
72 reviews3 followers
May 20, 2019
Shauna's attitude towards Jess in this book really REALLY pissed me off.
Profile Image for Amy Noire.
33 reviews
October 16, 2021
So much for not reading all of book 2 in a single day. 😄 Pa-LOWED! 🙌 my single gripe is a specific letter was long affffffff, like damn.
Profile Image for Amy.
460 reviews14 followers
October 27, 2015
When dealing with Mary, cover all reflective surfaces, especially water, and carry lots of salt because this time she is on the hunt and will not rest until she has taken each girl, piece by piece!

With the loss of Anna, it is up to Shauna, Jess and Kitty to try and track down Bloody Mary Worth’s roots, and discover once and for all what causes her to seek revenge. This time however, with Shauna and Kittys’ distrust of Jess’s motives, they set out on their own seeking help from the only person who has lived with the horror of Mary for decades, Cody. Now, armed with people who know how to fight, and more determined than ever to put her spirit to rest, the girls set out to the only place they feel will have answers, Solomon’s Folly.

Once they arrive the girls quickly realize that Mary might be the least of their problems. Solomon’s Folly has its own dark mystery shrouding it, as well as a Sheriff who is out to protect his family’s secrets. Filled with ambiguities of its own, Solomon’s Folly is a perfect place for hiding secrets, being that it has hidden the truth for over a hundred and fifty years. Now, the girls not only have to face Mary, but quicksand, phantom fog and hidden traps, all used to bury the truth. While everything might be stacked against them, they quickly gain purchase when they discover ancient letters from Mary’s family, as well as her locket, allowing them to start to piece together her past. Uncovering not only the truth behind a sinister past, a pastor with unholy intentions and the cruelty of jealous girl, Jess and Kitty also uncover the bodies and the secrets that were meant to stay buried. But through it all, they must also learn that with the power of winning, comes someone that must lose.

Once again, readers are brought back into the clutches of Bloody Mary and her wrath, returning them to a story that is as truly as chilling as it is unique. Creepily fantastic, Mary Unleashed is an engrossing read, not meant to be read next to a mirror. Hillary Monahan spins this classic urban legend on its head, breathing life and fear into it, giving Bloody Mary a name, a purpose and a past. As horrifically terrifying as it is eerie, Mary Unleashed is part of a fantastic duology that continues the tempo from the first book, without slowing, filling a void that many horror stories leave open. For any fan of the urban legend who has found themselves, at one time or another, standing with a group of girls in front of a mirror, chanting the name “Bloody Mary.” This book will make you think twice and keep you looking over your shoulder.

you can find more of my reviews and giveaways in my syndicated newspaper column: For the Love of Books-Dixon's Independent Voice and with www.mpg8.com; as well as: San Diego Book Review & San Francisco Book Review
Profile Image for Cass.
46 reviews1 follower
August 8, 2022
It's no secret the previous book by this author, Mary: The Summoning, scared the absolute hell out of me, so the sequel had a lot to live up to. Whilst a little less scary than the first, this was still filled with unexpected twists and turns as we follow our characters and their haunting at the hands of Bloody Mary. Monahan weaves a spooky tale entwined with mystery and intrigue, to the point where it is impossible to put down. I highly recommend picking up this duology of books and getting stuck in. Just don't say her name too often… 
Profile Image for Auggie.
243 reviews78 followers
May 18, 2016
Egads! *shudders*

I think that there are very few books that I've ever read that have made me so shaky. To be quite honest with you, I hate horror. I just do. I don't like being terrified. I do like being creeped out, and I love a good creepy read. However, there's a difference between creepy and freaking terrifying.

Mary Unleashed definitely fell into the latter category. Bloody Mary has always been a sinister and blood curdling story. What kid hasn't been tempted to try calling out to Mary in the mirror during a party or even just one night when you didn't have anything better to do? How many kids actually managed to do it without screeching or nearly passing out? Few I'd wager.

This book is absolutely not for the faint of heart. It's completely gruesome, but I kept reading because I wanted to know if the girls were successful in defeating Mary Worth, the antagonist.

Back in the first installment of this two part story, a bunch of unsuspecting girls play a party game and unwittingly release the decaying and vengeful Mary Worth into the world through the mirror. What they didn't realize is that once Mary draws blood from ANYONE she'll haunt them forever, either until she draws blood from someone else or she successfully murders her victim.

Mary isn't too picky though, she'll kill other people too if they're anywhere near her when she comes to claim her blood prize. The only person she won't attack? A mom. The only little human piece of Mary that's left is the love of her own mother.

You try so hard to understand how Mary could become so horrible, but just as you start to feel sorry for the ghost she does something truly disgusting reminding you that it's impossible to appeal to her humanity. There's none left, and the girls are all in danger. Of the "about to be murdered by a ghost" variety.

The plot was well played out and Mary's backstory was a great new perspective, touching on issues like abuse and bullying and turning Mary's origin story into a tragedy not of her own making.

A talented second and final installment to a very fascinating new look at the Bloody Mary story.
Profile Image for Rachel.
1,620 reviews51 followers
January 6, 2016
This is the sequel to the first Mary novel and it is a terrifying and perfect second novel that finishes up the story. This novel picks up a mere month or so after the first novel ends where Kitty was saved from Mary being attached to her and they cast her onto Jess, who started this whole mess. The group goes on to Soloman's Folly and slowly begin to unfold the mystery of what happened to Mary, and why she came back to haunt with such a terrifying force.

Hillary Monahan has a great skill of being able to keep me up at night with fright, but I also can't put the novel down!! The only other author who has that affect on me is the great Stephen King! Everyone needs to watch out, Hillary Monahan is an amazing author who will scare the pants of you but is highly entertaining!
Profile Image for Brad.
533 reviews11 followers
September 24, 2015
This book concludes the two part story of Mary Worth a.k.a. Bloody Mary. These books are a fun, entertaining read and if I had read then when I was in junior high (the audience they are likely intended for) they would've given me nightmares. I think Bloody Mary is one of the guaranteed ghost icons that every kid was scared of. Going to the bathroom in the middle of the night and being scared to look in the mirror, haha. Anyways, if you've ever been scared by the idea of Bloody Mary, these books are worth reading.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 140 reviews

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