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(Crestview Academy #1)

3.38  ·  Rating details ·  3,696 ratings  ·  627 reviews
Lauren Myracle brings her keen understanding of teen dynamics to a hypnotic horror story of twisted friendship.

When Bliss’s hippie parents leave the commune and dump her at the home of her aloof grandmother in a tiny Atlanta neighborhood, it’s like being set down on an alien planet. The only guide naïve Bliss has to her new environment is what she’s seen on The Andy

Hardcover, 444 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Harry N. Abrams
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Miss Ryoko Hi Nathalia! I was a bit confused by that myself. The other book is called Rhymes with Witches and it actually came out before Bliss did, but…moreHi Nathalia! I was a bit confused by that myself. The other book is called Rhymes with Witches and it actually came out before Bliss did, but Goodreads lists it as the second book. So I think this is a mistake. (less)

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Average rating 3.38  · 
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 ·  3,696 ratings  ·  627 reviews

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This book had a lot going on, so much that while it was a well written story, too much is crammed in, and much is forgotten, leading to an unsatisfactory conclusion.

The author sets up an incredibly creepy tone from the beginning. The chapters are divided alternately by excerpts from a creepy diary, quotations from 'The Andy Griffith Show' and folk songs as well as the trial of Charles Manson and his Family for multiple murders.

But the tone wasn't enough to hold this book together. Plot threads
Raeleen Lemay
Dec 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Whoa, I just breezed right through this in two days. Crazy.

So basically, this book is about a girl named Bliss In the Morning Dew. Why is she named that, you ask? Well, her parents are hippies and she's been living on a commune in a tent up until the beginning of this book. She's living with her conservative grandmother, and she feels really out of place when she goes to school for the first time. She is super loving and friendly, having lived with hippies her whole life, which made her pretty
Vone Savan
Feb 22, 2011 rated it liked it
After three trips to Borders, I finally picked up Bliss by Lauren Myracle. I knew nothing about this “YA horror novel” prior to spotting it on the top shelf of the YA section. The cover was what compelled me to buy the book; it reminded me of the eighties VHS copy of the horror movie Carrie; the book was written by Stephen King.

Fourteen-year-old Bliss Inthemorningdew (her parents were hippies and the book takes place in 1969) was left with her very traditional grandmother (her grandfather
Sep 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The whole time I was reading this I knew I KNEW
That I had read it before but I kept going because I couldn’t remember what happened next and it did keep my interest
Steph (Reviewer X)
Oct 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who don’t like/are too scared of category horror novels
Recommended to Steph by: Book Chic
It must be said I’ve never been much of a Lauren Myracle fan. The Internet Girls series (trilogy?) may be revolutionary to some, but it bugs me on a conceptual level. I did try to read the first book and couldn’t get past the first page. Then I tried one of her full length novels, Rhymes With Witches, and while the premise intrigued me, the novel felt like a countdown to self-implode by the last page. Which, I mean, it did. The resolution left me pretty devoid of emotion.

(Trust me, there’s a
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
There are two things I dislike about Bliss:
1. That parts of the storyline frustrate me, and
2. That I can't explain why I'm frustrated without giving away spoilers.
So, to that end, I'm going to cover myself and say SPOILERS AHEAD. I'll try to be as generic as possible, but still...

Bliss - the character, not the novel - is charming in a wide-eyed innocent kind of way. She's basically a hippie Anne of Green Gables, though slightly less imaginative. She has an idea of what's right and wrong in the
I'm not exactly sure what to say about this book. It's set during the Vietnam War, and Bliss is the teenage daughter of hippies who leave her with her rich, conservative grandmother in the South while they run off to Canada to avoid the draft. Bliss's grandmother enrolls her in a private school, because, well, the public schools are integrated. Just about all of the students at Bliss's school attend there because their parents don't want them attending an integrated institution, and those values ...more
Aug 24, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya, sf-f
What I really liked about this book was how the story started out - set in late the 1960s, 14 year old Bliss has lived with her hippie parents on a commune or some other alternative living situation for her whole life. Her parents decide to go to Canada so that her dad can avoid the draft and they drop her off with her well to do Southern grandmother who promptly enrolls Bliss in a private prep school. Talk about culture shock! I loved the historical details - tidbits about TV, clothes, customs, ...more
Sep 04, 2008 rated it really liked it
So if you take Charles Manson, The Andy Griffith Show, the Civil Rights Movement, hippies, and a ghost story, mix it all up and throw it into a fancy-pants school in Atlanta, you'll have "Bliss." 14-year-old Bliss is the title character, and her parents have uprooted her from their northern California commune and dropped her on her grandmother's doorstep on their way to Canada. She's nervous about fitting in and making friends, but not to the point of silencing her opinions, particularly about ...more
May 25, 2010 rated it did not like it
I was soooo excited when I ran across this at the library and after I read the book jacket, I couldn't wait to get home and start it. Word to the wise: If you have this book on you tbr list, Don't subject yourself to this kind of literary torture. This is truly the worst book I have ever read!!! When I read the jacket, I was thinking it would be reminiscent of the 1970's horror films that I loved, but boy was I ever wrong. The book was all over the place and not at all scary.(other than the ...more
May 19, 2010 rated it liked it
Two and a half stars, really. I wanted to like this one A LOT and yet I had a bunch of issues. At first everything seemed really firmly established - the setting, the backstory, the era, etc., but as another reviewer pointed out, it's like these things were forgotten about as the story progressed. Bliss adjusted super fast to going from commune to exclusive prep school, in a way I couldn't always buy. Also at first the historical details really served a purpose of establishing setting and ...more
Jul 14, 2008 rated it really liked it
Bliss in the Morning Dew has hippie parents and when they ditch her at her grandmother’s house on their way to Canada she is forced to survive in a world that is completely alien to her.

After living on a commune for years, Bliss expects high school to be like The Andy Griffith Show and is looking forward to starting frienships with people her age. Her grandmother enrolls her at Crestview Academy, an elite school that used to be a convent, which makes her both nervous and excited.

Much to Bliss’
Daniel Marks
Oct 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What a fantastic read. Bliss tells the story of a friendship gone horribly wrong, playing out against the backdrop of the Manson murders and the subsequent trial. It's weird and frightening and thought-provoking. I can't recommend it enough.
Selena Yukino (The Lioness: hear me roar)
Holy shit...Everything's. Oops, I mean everyone's crazy.

4 stars for unpredictability.

Dec 18, 2008 rated it it was ok
Oh my. Very, very different than ttyl. I didn't really like that book, but more because I thought that the conceit was ill-served by the ordinary plot.

Here, though, the plot is anything but ordinary. We're in Atlanta, in 1969. Bliss intheMeadow (yep, a real hippie last name) is living with her very stereotyped grandmother after her parents flee to Canada to avoid the draft. This is a very different world than the commune... the social work center... or any other place Bliss has lived.

She's sent
Bliss had an interesting premise, but a poorly executed plot and flat characters. It excelled in the witch-y aspects (the sense of another world being beyond our own and the ability of Bliss to access it) but characters like Sandy, Sarah Lynn, and Mitchell fell completely flat. Only Bliss and her Grandmother seemed to develop at all.

The character of Sandy in general was really weird and the plot became very uncomfortable at times. I assumed I would be more scared while reading as it has the
Nov 13, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2008, teen
This book was so.... odd.

Bliss is a supernatural thriller set in 1969 Atlanta around the backdrop of institutional racism and the Manson murders. This is the first YA horror I've read in a long time - partly because they don't publish a lot of it these days.

I just had such a hard time figuring this book out, and I'm also finding it difficult to articulate my feelings about it. It all felt pretty uneven and I'm really not sure who the audience is. The character development, particularly of Bliss
Morgan bookaddicts.ahoy
Mar 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: best-ever
Actual Rating: 4.5
-This was an incredible book. I flew through it pretty fast. The only reason this doesn't get all 5 stars is because I was pretty saddened by the ending.
Cheska the Great is Not Okay
Nope. Not even gonna finish this, even though I have less than 150 pages left. I can't take it anymore.
Mar 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
Meh... it was ok. 2.5-3 stars maybe.

***Actually NO- looking back it was MAYBE 2 stars if I’m feeling generous. Don’t waste your time. Very cool premise, very lackluster book. And if you are a cat person- REALLY JUST DON’T! I don’t know if you’ve ever been in a situation where you can’t quite see how bad it is while you’re in it, but once you’re removed, you can look back on things much more clearly. That’s kind of how I feel about this book. I’m actually quite disappointed in myself for getting
Oct 11, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book but I was hoping for more spooky or scarier moments throughout the whole book. I think it just needed a little more hair raising moments.
Mel Raschke
Apr 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Starting a new series book. She is sent to her grandparent's home and it feels like she is on an alien planet.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book was pretty good. Definitely a Teen read. It was easy to follow. The horror aspects were done well. The suspense was great. I didn’t like how it ended, but that’s not due to writing - it just wasn’t a happy ending lol but it shouldn’t be. All in all, I enjoyed the book and wouldn’t hesitate to read the next one.
Leydy Ramirez
Jan 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: book-reviews
Bliss, by Lauren Myracle is the book that I was reading and the book is about a fourteen year old girl named Bliss. She has recently moved in with her grandmother and is attending a new school named Crestview. Bliss is not that thrilled about being the new girl at school but she has no choice. Bliss becomes friends with some girls and from her experiences at Crestview she will regret becoming friends with one of them. Bliss soon finds out a secret about the school that will change the way she ...more
Oct 28, 2009 added it
Shelves: 2009, ya-paranormal
Bliss is a new student at Crestview Academy in Atlanta, Georgia. Everybody at school seems nice to her at first, but as time progresses Bliss realizes that Crestview - like many high schools - is plagued with cliques and popularity games. But Bliss is able to see through much of this superficiality, partly because of her unconventional upbringing (her hippie parents raised her on a commune), and partly because she is generally a caring, down-to-earth person. Since she doesn't care what the other ...more
Oct 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
So what can I say about this book without giving anything away?

Wow! And I mean Wow!

If there is one thing that I love about Lauren Myracle it is her backbone. She is more than willing to tackle difficult topics and cut right to the heart of the matter. Of course this means that some readers will find something in there which they will find offensive which seems to land her in the site of those who would like to regulate what we are allowed to read. I say don’t be afraid of a book which is
Nov 05, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who was a suspenseful read
Shelves: own
When Bliss’s hippie parents leave the commune and dump her at the home of her aloof grandmother in a stony Atlanta neighborhood, it’s like being set down on an alien planet. The only guide naive Bliss has to her new environment is what she’s seen on The Andy Griffith Show. But Mayberry is poor preparation for Crestview Academy, an elite school where the tensions of the present and the dark secrets of the past threaten to simmer into violence. Openhearted Bliss desperately wants new friends, ...more
Jul 20, 2009 rated it liked it
I have mixed feelings about this book. On one hand, it was a very interesting portrayal of life during the early seventies. I really loved Bliss's character. She was sweet and because she was so naive the background of the portrait she was in was that much more vivid. There were black pages between chapters with quotes from The Andy Griffith Show, commercials of the time, and Charles Manson. They were one of the highlights of the book, in my opinion. I only wish that Myracle would have spent ...more
Oct 31, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2009
I feel . . . cheated. Yes, that's the word. The cover was enchanting and scary, perfect for a Halloween read, and this was a novel with the backdrop of a real 1970 case about a man who'd murdered all these innocent people. It started out on a creepy note, and there wasn't any complaint about Myracle's writing. Bliss's characterizations rung true to her naive fourteen-year-old, daughter-of-hippies image. I liked her. The alternations between Bliss's story and the rantings of a mysterious S.L.L ...more
Lauren Myracle has created a dark and scary piece of YA that sets itself apart from most other attempts at teen-friendly horror (mostly because it works), and it actually touches on some pretty heavy themes that make it all the more interesting.

Bliss Inthemorningdew - hippie parents, don't ask - has been dumped on her prissy Grandma's hands as soon as her parents decided to make it to Canada, so as to evade Nixon's idea of American patriotism. Fresh out of the hippie communes, Bliss is new to
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Why did Mitchell stop talking to Bliss? 5 26 Nov 07, 2014 06:18PM  

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Lauren Myracle is the author of numerous young adult novels. She was born in 1969 in North Carolina. Lauren Myracle holds an MA in English from Colorado State University and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College. she has written many novels, including the famous IM books, ttyl, ttfn, and l8r, g8r.

Her first novel, Kissing Kate, was selected as one of ALA's "Best Books

Other books in the series

Crestview Academy (2 books)
  • Rhymes with Witches (Crestview Academy, #2)
“She holds herself with such reserve. She smiles, but the smile doesn't reach her eyes, even in the company of the girls she's chosen to eat with. Why?
I have no clue, and I really don't want to spend my time worrying about it. But my brain pushes at the question anyway.
Why are people aloof?
Because they don't want to let others in.
Why don't they want to let others in?
Well, sometimes because they're shy, and sometimes because they're convinced of their own superiority.
But those aren't the only reasons. Sometimes it's because thay have something to hide.”
“When you make a solemn promise to a friend, it ain't right to go back on it. No. Never let your friend down, never break a trust, and when you give your word, never go back on it.

-Sheriff Andy Taylor”
More quotes…