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Mary: The Summoning

(Bloody Mary #1)

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  1,965 ratings  ·  479 reviews
There is a right way and a wrong way to summon her.

Jess had done the research. Success requires precision: a dark room, a mirror, a candle, salt, and four teenage girls. Each of them--Jess, Shauna, Kitty, and Anna--must link hands, follow the rules . . . and never let go.

A thrilling fear spins around the room the first time Jess calls her name: "Bloody Mary. Bloody Mary.
Hardcover, 250 pages
Published September 2nd 2014 by Disney-Hyperion
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Hillary Monahan There are mystery elements, but I would more call it traditional horror than a mystery.

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Average rating 3.72  · 
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 ·  1,965 ratings  ·  479 reviews

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Start your review of Mary: The Summoning (Bloody Mary, #1)
Apr 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, own
For some stupid reason I read this only at nighttime and it freaked me the eff out! I have always been terrified of Bloody Mary ever since a bad experience in middle school (just stupid kids thinking we saw more than we did, but back then it was intense!) and just the idea of being haunted by her like this... nope!!!

This book delivers fantastically when it comes to horror content and hair-raising scenes, however it does have a shaky start where I found the reactions to her first appearance under
Wendy Darling
Omg, the idea of Bloody Mary scared the shit out of me as a kid.

*waits to pounce*
Initial Thoughts: Do not read this book late at night when you are all by yourself. You will find yourself reaching for a box of salt, and lots of blankets and sheets to cover all the mirrors. This book would make a perfect summer horror flick - you know, the kind with the silly teens summoning a ghost for fun - then all hell breaks loose. This is a wild, fun, and very entertaining horror book - and this is coming from someone who doesn't usually read horror. Read at your own risk, :)

The Review:
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
#1 The Summoning ★★★☆☆
#2 Unleashed ???

This review is long overdue, and I'm finally caving and just writing a mini-review for it. I originally gave it 3.5 stars and was going to round up to 4, but as time has gone on, I've realized I can't really justify rounding it up to 4 stars.

I grew up obsessed with the urban legend of Bloody Mary, so when I learned that there was a horror duology about it, I had to snag it. The horror aspect itself is wonderful: Mary is creepy as hell and the fact that she s
Paige  Bookdragon
Nov 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: ghostbusters
I keep on telling you people, don't dare to call the dead. Now see what happens when you tried messing up with some unfriendly ghosts.

Shauna, Jess, Kitty, and Anna were the kind of girls you would definitely hate for their stupidity if this is a horror movie.

But this is not a movie.This is a book. So hold your horses, haters.

We have this group of friends who successfully called Bloody Mary. How the paranormal experts would have rejoiced if this is true.But like the same things that happens in
SoWrongItsRANDI {Bell, Book & Candle}
Bell, Book & Candle | Mary: The Summoning Review

So I thought I would review something scary in honor of Halloween. Muah ha ha ha (*evil laugh*). What's more scary than a Bloody Mary? Plenty of things I'm sure, but that's not the point. I was plenty scared, believe me. Maybe it has a little to do with me being the only one downstairs tonight; I live in house inhabited by a few ghosts (I'm so serious right now). You can only imagine my reaction every time is heard a noise, or thought I saw somethi
3.5 stars!

MARY: The Summoning is the first book in a two-book series featuring "Bloody Mary", written by Hillary Monahan. Is there anyone out there that hasn't heard the Urban legend of Bloody Mary? The basics--as I knew them--was to go alone into the bathroom (or any room with a mirror). You would turn out the light, and call out "Bloody Mary" three times. At the third recitation, her ghost was said to appear in the mirror before you.

That was it.

Of course, we never actually saw anything, but in
Sci-Fi & Scary
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Mary: The Summoning does the Bloody Mary legend good. Hillary Monahan moves the story along with a purpose, and by the time you’re done with the first book, you need the second one on-hand immediately. (I’ve already reserved the second book at the library.) We do get a complete story arc in Mary: The Summoning, so it’s more of a gleeful “Must read book 2!” than a frustrated cry. I want to know more about the revelation of the connection to Bloody Mary, and I want a certain someone to get their c ...more
Apr 30, 2014 rated it did not like it
I've always been fascinated by the 'Bloody Mary' myth and that - I guess - was the main reason why I was super excited to read this book. It had this 'Anna Dressed in Blood' kind of vibe to the book based on the blurb alone, so yeah, I was pretty excited to read this book early!

Unfortunately though, this was yet another book that sounded cool but once read . . . it was nothing particularly special. While the book definitely had its creepy moments and perhaps will please some horror fans out ther
Melissa Chung
Jul 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Oohhh this book was so good. 4.5 stars because it was soo scary. I mean it kept me at the edge of my seat. I dropped it 1/2 star because Jess is a terrible human being.

There are 4 girls in this story. Shauna the main character, Jess the deceitful bitch, Anna the ballsy one and Kitty the quiet, overly nice doormat. Well okay she isn't a doormat but really close. Shauna and Jess are best friends (I don't know why). Anna and Kitty have been best friends since they were six. That might be the case f
Sep 02, 2014 rated it it was ok
Another week, another mediocre horror novel. This time, it’s Mary: The Summoning, which had a lot of interesting elements and potentially cool bits of story that were unfortunately assembled in the most predictable and boring way possible.

The premise is pretty simple: one girl who obviously knows more than she’s letting on convinces three of her friends to get together and summon Bloody Mary. They literally accomplish this on page one, and just as you’re wondering how we’re meant to get a novel
When I first seen this in the library I was like Oh yeah! I mean come on that cover is bad ass! My initial reaction before reading this was OK this better scare me! And it sure did that! I don't scare easily. I'm a horror girl through and through! The scarier and gorier the better in my opinion! So naturally I'm going to love horror books! And this scared me! Every detail of Mary and the way she moved and maneuvered from one shiny object to the next was just BOOM! Even down the the small details ...more
Ashley Daviau
Jun 03, 2021 rated it liked it
I’m right in the middle with this one, I didn’t love it but I didn’t hate it either. Some parts were incredibly interesting and at times I was thoroughly enjoying this novel and convinced it would be a five star read because there’s nothing I enjoy more than a good YA horror story! This one had some original and unique ideas that I really did enjoy but then one element in particular threw me off the story. The characters are just so insufferable at times that I wanted to rip my eyeballs. They we ...more
Mary is, without a doubt, one of the most decent classic horror YA novels I've ever read, mostly because it didn't stick solely to the cliches and attempts to scare the reader, but also actively worked to deliver well-crafted horror scenes, characters with some dimension, a complex background story to the urban legend of Bloody Mary and, most importantly, it has some semblance of a plot in there that culminates in a pretty exciting climax.

There's horror and high school friendship drama in equal
Aug 27, 2014 rated it liked it
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

‘Mary moved fast. One moment she was distant, the next her hands smacked against the mirror. Her fingers flexed, and then the clawing began, a shrieking squeal of razors cutting across glass. I jerked back, forcing myself to maintain the handhold. There’d been no noise during the last summoning. Now, the sound was undeniable.’

When Jess uncovers the secret to properly summoning Bloody Mary, she convinces her three friends Shauna, Kitty and Anna to join her to see if i
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
When a fresh talent like Hillary Monahan has a debut as good as MARY: The Summoning, it's a pleasure to behold. The book is a roller coaster that barrels around every turn with terrifying abandon, takes you places you never expected to go, and leaves you at the end somehow still in one piece. The story begins with seventeen-year-old Shauna and her friends Jess, Kitty, and Anna alone in Anna's basement, ready to partake in the old tradition of attempting to summon "Bloody" Mary Worth's ghost in t ...more
Dark Faerie Tales
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: In this first novel in the series, horrific images of Mary will play in your head for weeks after reading.

Opening Sentence: Dearest Constance, I regret to inform you that you are an abysmal sister.

The Review:

Shauna, Jess, Kitty, and Anna are good friends, so it seems like something exciting for a night, to summon Mary. I mean, nothing will actually happen, right? As you might have guessed, they were horribly wrong. Mary, in a foolish mistake, ge
Paige Bradish
Jul 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I received Mary: The Summoning by Hilary Monahan from Around The World ARC Tours and this is my honest review.

Finding out there was a fictional book about Bloody Mary was exciting for the sole reason that me and my best friends used to play “Bloody Mary” at summer camp when we were younger. Of course nothing came of it but for a couple young girls we had fun scaring the crap out of ourselves!

My initial thoughts about the main characters are that I dislike Jess for so many reasons. I hate her ty
Dec 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing

I'd like to leave it at that but I can't. This book had the suspense, the horror, and the mystery that all good horror movies should have. If this were to be made into a movie, I'd definitely watch it despite being terrified as shit. I loved the characters-they're so real and three dimensional. I especially loved the bonds of friendship that tied Shauna, Jess, Anna, and Kitty together. It was at the most scariest parts that their friendship granted me solace.

Now I'm afraid I'm
Emma Adams
May 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
The creepy cover and blurb caught my attention immediately. This is one seriously scary story! It starts with the well-known game “Bloody Mary”. Shauna’s friend Jess is obsessed with the idea of summoning the ghost of Mary from a mirror, and manages to convince Shauna, Kitty and Anna to go along with her plan. None of them expect it to really work, and for the gruesome spectre to walk out into the real world. Mary attaches herself to Shauna, haunting her through every reflective surface and thre ...more
Heather Marie
Apr 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I love everything about this book. There were moments when the description was so perfect, I cringed. That does not happen often for me, a book making me react that way. And it wasn't in a way that was too much, but just right. It's everything I love about classic horror. The scare is there, but the gore is left to your imagination. Hillary has a way of presenting the idea and letting your mind run away with it, which is the makings of the perfect horror story, IMO. The pacing was non-stop throu ...more
Jul 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
This one is a freaky roller coaster of a book. I wanted to reach into the book and shake the characters, talk some sense into them, and rescue a couple of them. I kept thinking things would get better and 'BOOM!' the next bad thing would happen... and the bad things kept getting worse. This is one that I would recommend only if you are looking for a sleepless night because you will be up late reading and then will not want to sleep. I loved it and I am definitely looking forward to the next book ...more

I just love it when I support an author who at the beginning had the sense to not give themselves 5 stars, only to see that they decided to rate their own books later.
Rating adjusted from 3 to 1
Eh. Was expecting something a bit more scarier. Still it was a fun little book.
Feb 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-tbr
"Mary always goes back to the mirror. It calls to her."

I've had Mary: The Summoning on my shelf for a bit, and I finally picked it up for the Ladies of Horror Fiction Readathon during Women in Horror Month. I'm not sure what took me so long to read this book, but it was so much fun, and I enjoyed every minute.

This book is about four best friends - Shauna, Kitty, Jess, and Anna (and Bloody Mary). Shauna is the main character, but a lot of the story circles around Jess since she creates the mess
Apr 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-star-books

When four friends decide to summon Bloody Mary, they have no idea what they are inviting into their lives through the mirror. Seeing her once, however, isn't enough and they decide to summon her again. The second summoning quickly spirals out of control, releasing Mary and her fury into their lives. While being haunted by the bloodthirsty ghost in every reflective surface, the girls learn horrible secrets not only about Mary, but also about each other.
The girls scramble to find out more
May 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
I’ve had this book on my Want list for a little while now so no surprise I got a little giddy when the publisher approved me for a copy on NetGalley. Squee! If you haven’t done any of these mirror games, or hold seances, or played with a Ouiji board when you were growing up then I pity your childhood, the saddened, deadened thing it must have been. Or me and my friends were just really effed in the head. Either way.

See, you play these games because you know you’re all going to amp each other up
May 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: requested
I have to say, I positively adored this book. I am a lover of all things creepy and crawly, especially when it comes to young adult books. I am happy to say that Mary: The Summoning offered everything I look for in a ghost story, wrapped up in one little book.

Before I even get to the meat of the text, I have to mention how much I love this cover. It's what initially drew my attention in, and I have to say it really captures what the book is about. I would hang that poster up on my wall (and then
When Jess suggests that Shauna, Kitty, Anna and herself call Bloody Mary the girls are hesitant at first but Jess can be very persuasive. Its a harmless Urban Legend, right? Wrong!!! The first time they do it they see a figure emerge from the fog. They don't get a good look at her because they freak out and Jess sends Bloody Mary away. Once isn't enough for Jess though. She convinces the girls to do it again and this time try to talk to her. The girls are even more hesitant this time but Jess go ...more
Sep 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book initially creeped me out a lot. If you have ever played this game as a child then you will instantly be reminded of the terror of the unknown and that feeling of suspense waiting for the image to appear in the mirror.

What I loved about this book was that the author didn't wait forever for the excitement to begin. She did a good job of building an interesting story with believable characters and yet kept the suspense level high. There were some spots in this book that made me question
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Books 1 1 Nov 02, 2017 01:21PM  
Crazy for Young A...: Mary: The Summoning by HIllary Monaham → Start Date: October 31st, 2017 7 9 Nov 01, 2017 10:34AM  
Book 1 1 Oct 30, 2017 01:27PM  
Mentor Texts: Mentor Texts 1 3 May 04, 2017 05:54AM  
Horror Reading Ch...: May 2016 Group Read: MARY: The Summoning 3 12 May 08, 2016 03:14PM  
What do you think? scary or not? 3 18 Feb 17, 2015 06:43PM  

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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 h

Other books in the series

Bloody Mary (2 books)
  • MARY: Unleashed (Bloody Mary, #2)

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