Say Her Name by Juno Dawson

I couldn’t sleep the other night, so I decided to read a book about Bloody Mary. That was a good idea.  

From the blurb:

Roberta ‘Bobbie’ Rowe is not the kind of person who believes in ghosts. A Halloween dare at her ridiculously spooky boarding school is no big deal, especially when her best friend Naya and cute local boy Caine agree to join in too. They are ordered to summon the legendary ghost of ‘Bloody Mary’: say her name five times in front of a candlelit mirror, and she shall appear… But, surprise surprise, nothing happens. Or does it?
Next morning, Bobbie finds a message on her bathroom mirror… five days… but what does it mean? And who left it there? Things get increasingly weird and more terrifying for Bobbie and Naya, until it becomes all too clear that Bloody Mary was indeed called from the afterlife that night, and she is definitely not a friendly ghost. Bobbie, Naya and Caine are now in a race against time before their five days are up and Mary comes for them, as she has come for countless others before…

Bobbie Rowe doesn’t like her boarding school Piper’s Hall School for Young Ladies, but she loves her best friend Naya and does her best to get through her lessons. There are no boys at her school, but she’s not really that interested, until the obnoxious Head Girl Grace invites brings some to an illicit Halloween party.

The girls are telling spooky stories, and one of them starts to talk about Bloody Mary, and how she was supposed to have been a student at Piper’s Hall. One thing leads to another and Bobbie ends up chanting Bloody Mary in front of the mirror with Naya and Caine, the hottest of the 2 local boys who were brought to the party. This is the first time Bobbie is compelled to do anything because of peer pressure/ wanting to impress a boy. Bobbie is usually quite sensible and pragmatic, but her friend Sadie said she chanted it a few nights before and nothing had happened. Bobbie is relatively confident that nothing is going to happen, but as she’s saying the words she starts to feel that something is not right. 

The next morning Bobbie is taking a shower and the words Five Days appear in the mirror. Bobbie starts to see a girl, constantly hear dripping from a source she can’t locate… and then Sadie goes missing.

It turns out that Mary was a student at Piper’s Hall, and if you call for her she will come for you…in five days.

This was a moderately creepy young adult horror novel. It probably was aided by the late hour, and the fact that when I went to reset my alarm, this showed up on the authentic weather app:

There were a couple of things that annoyed me about the book, the characters used quite a lot of amercanisms, especially considering that this is supposedly set in a super posh boarding school. Naya is an American, so she has an excuse, but I have never heard anyone British say “making out” over snogging. 

The story appears to have been heavily influenced by films like The Ring, The Grudge and the Bloody Mary episode of Supernatural (which is mentioned by the characters). There is a traditional horror film “twist” ending that I saw coming, but I am a massive horror fan.  

Overall the book was creepy, enjoyable but aimed at younger teenagers. I gave it 3/5 stars on Goodreads.

Have you read this book or is horror a no-no? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Cheerio !

Stephani Xxx 

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2 thoughts on “Say Her Name by Juno Dawson

  1. Holy shit, that thing on your phone while you’re reading the book would have freaked me out! I would have snuggled into my husband to hide from the world SO fast, haha! It seems like a good book for me though since I enjoy a scare from time to time but nothing too intense.

    Liked by 1 person

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