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(Possessions #1)

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  1,409 ratings  ·  156 reviews
The It Girl meets The Exorcist in this chilling, haunted boarding school tale

New-girl Lindsay discovers all is not right at the prestigious Marlwood Academy for Girls. Ethereal, popular Mandy and her clique are plotting something dangerous. Lindsay overhears them performing strange rituals, and sees their eyes turn black. It doesn’t help that the school itself is totally e
Paperback, 295 pages
Published September 3rd 2009 by Razorbill
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Average rating 3.71  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,409 ratings  ·  156 reviews

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Oct 06, 2011 rated it did not like it

The Plot:

I really wanted to like this book. I have read her Wicked series and didn't like it. But after I purchased this without realizing who the author was I decided to go in with an open mind and hope it was as good as it's AMAZING cover. However it wasn't. It was not original or very interesting. Lindsay goes to a boarding school after a breakdown (that is never fully explained or explored) to start over new. As it turns out her new school is haunted and used to be an asylum for girls in
Nov 01, 2011 rated it did not like it
Seriously one of the worst YA books I have ever read. The main character was so annoying that by the end I just wanted her to be killed off and let someone else take the role of lead character. Sick of female authors writing about young women and making them so pathetic. Omg look a cute boy that thinks im cute but he has a gf but idc about my self respect im going to follow him around like a lost puppy dog and hope he picks me in the end. i dont even care if it makes me look pathetic im 15 and i ...more
Oct 08, 2009 rated it liked it
Possessions is the first book I've read by Nancy Holder, but I can definitely say it won't be the last.

Prior to reading this book, I'd read a review that said Possessions would be the result if Stephen King were asked to write Gossip Girls. I'd have to say that that statement's fairly accurate. Possessions has all of the drama associated with your typical high school "in-crowd," and, combined with a thrilling supernatural twist, it makes for a read that will have you turning pages and possibly h
Jul 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
Loved Mean Girls? Enjoy Gossip Girl? Dig on R.L. Stine? Because Possessions is what I imagine would happen if Mean Girls and Gossip Girl had a baby, then gave it to R.L. Stine for its formative years.

As potentially awesome as that may sound, it's not. The entire book is derivative, predictable, and ultimately, unsatisfying.

Those familiar with the narrative style of the likes of Courtney Summers will immediately see the extreme similarity in Holder's work, to the point where I thought I'd acciden
Veronica Morfi
Possessions introduces us to the story of Lindsay, a girl who is starting over in a new school after an emotional breakdown she had in her old life. But Marlwood Academy is not your typical school, yes, you have the popular girls and the girls that are dying to be popular but Marlwood is also haunted by the ghosts of girls from the time it was an asylum. Lindsay will soon discover that the deadly games that the popular clique in Marlwood plays are connected to the dead girls from the past.

I thou
Jasmina Vulovic
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
So..where do I start.. First of all, my general opinion on this book is that it's quite interesting to read. They way story goes reminds me of some movie, but not in a bad way. I like how the plot evolves and how actions have real consequences, which gives you information that whatever characters decide to do next, WILL have an outcome, good or a really bad one. I'm really triggered that it ends on a cliffhanger and I am dying to know what happens next, so for now I can't really judge the entire ...more
Aug 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
Lindsay is just about to get the fresh start she has been longing for. No longer will she be surrounded by those who remember the "breakdown." No longer will she be "that girl." Instead, she is hoping to blend in nicely with the other students at Marlwood Academy. But it looks like luck just is not on Lindsay's side. Shortly after arriving at the Academy, she begins to experience some unexplained activity and hearing some rumors she just cannot seem to ignore.

Possessions is one of those novels t
Aug 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
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WOW! Really Fascinating to read this book...

The most noticeable thing about this book was it's cover. Okay let be honest to myself - that it's the amazing book cover of it that made me read it in first choice & the truth is I really liked it a lot...

I enjoyed it so much. Yeah I took much time to finish it but hey it was a good book to read in horror genre. Though I have a few collection in my reading experience when it come about in horror genre literature. But above all till now by this boo
Ashley Manzueta
Oct 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: school-books
Possessions by Nancy Holder was about a girl named Linsday Cavanaugh. She just moved into a boarding school called Marlwood by scholarship. There have been rumors that the school is haunted. Linsday started expieriencing some wierd things while she was at the school. She kept seeing a girls face, her eyes black and her mouth shaped like an O. Linsay is instantly freaked out. Mandy, a popular girl at Marlwood, was spotted by Lindsay doing some wierd things like, talking to herself or her eyes wou ...more
Kate Winiarska
Mar 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Won through Goodreads Firstreads.

Possessions is an atmospheric and engrossing read from beginning to end. From the very first page you are thrown into the deep end of boarding school life, and the hierarchy of teenage girls in that environment, but with some added horror and mystery.

Marlwood is a very creepy place to say the least and I felt the hairs on the back of my neck raise more than once!

Lindsay is a brilliant character with a detailed personality and a mysterious and haunting past, and I
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Kira M for

After discovering her boyfriend being intimate with another girl, Lindsey finds herself at Marlwood Academy. Can someone say dilapidated and creepy?

At night, Lindsey keeps seeing ghostly apparitions out her window that are nothing short of unnerving. One day, she stumbles across a room filled with memories, mementos, and other items from the school's past. To make matters worse, she overhears the Queen Bee, Megan, and her cohorts performing strange rituals
2.5 stars

Was expecting more
less insta love and mean girl drama. The possession crap all happened towards the end and felt rushed to me. I have the sequel but I'm not sure if I'll end up reading it.
Kat Kennedy
I have to be honest, I just couldn't finish this. It's not you, Possessions, it's me. I expected something creepier and edgier. ...more
Possessions by Nancy Holder is the first book I've read by this author. From reading the synopsis you already know the popular girls are possessed by spirits. The mystery in this book lies in why were they possessed and who were these spirits.

I had a fun time reading Possessions. I know your thinking "Fun?" What was fun for me was the creepy factor in the setting of the book. I loved how the eerie atmosphere was set. While reading you could feel how creepy it was staying at a school, surrounded
2.5 stars

At its core, Possessions has a pretty cool story. Nothing exactly original or groundbreaking, but perfect for a simple, clean YA horror novel. Sadly, not only does the plot move super slowly, with long stretches in which nothing of actual importance happens, riddled with Lindsay drooling over Troy and Mandy being a typically crazy mean girl, but there's very little exploration of any of the things the novel introduces, especially the characters.

Lindsay had this 'breakdown' before coming
Apr 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
I have heard tons of mixed reviews ranging from a really bad recommendation to completely loving it. However, I have to say, I'm more in the middle because I have realized that there are many positive as well as negative things about this novel.

The negative: Possessions moved too slow. There was a really long rising action and it just seemed as if I had to keep waiting and waiting for things to finally start to occur. Another thing that I didn't quite like was the fact that there were way too ma
Dec 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, victoria-lucas
Wow! Where do I begin? Not only is this instant "cover-love" for me, it is also described as "The It Girl meets The Exorcist". That alone had me wanting to grab this book immediately.

POSSESSIONS is about a girl, Lindsay, sent to a boarding school following a nervous breakdown. Lindsay thinks she can start a new life here, only to discover eerie happenings, ghostly pranks, and rumors that the school is a centuries-old, former insane asylum for wayward girls - and an operating theater with evidenc
Lory Blanco (areaderheart)
possession is kind of like RL. Stones meets Gossip Girl. You have your click of mean popular rich girls and then the girl that doesn't fit in. combine this with a supernatural twist and it makes for a good plot. Or at least it was supposed to be but the plot falls flat, with overused cliche and already used story line. The first half of the book was extremely boring. I only started getting into the book towards the end. That's were the supernatural dlement really jumped at me and I started to en ...more
RATING: 1.5 Out Of 5

Unfortunatly I was very dissapointed with this book...
I had heard that is was a mix of gossip girl and something by Stephen King. That sounds awesome right? Yer.. but this doesn't live up to that description.

I won't say to much about this, because Miranda in her review pretty much sums up my feelings on this book, link:
Kai Van
Oct 20, 2016 rated it liked it
I expected it to be tiny bit creepier than it was, but I definitely liked it enough to continue with the rest of the trilogy! Not horrible, not amazing. A fun, quick read. Prolly better suited for somewhat younger teens (14-16 or so) but I don't see why someone older wouldn't enjoy it. Just as long as you take it for what it is. I could see this as a Nickelodeon/Disney made for TV Halloween movie. Could be fun! ...more
is mee... kissa
Apr 20, 2011 marked it as to-read
I hope this really is a horror book cause that's the impression i got when i saw the cover.
freaky cover. And i just looked at the sequel to this book.... freakier cover. And i like the rhyme at the bottom. Adds to the freakiness
... *sigh* i love it already.
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
Although I felt this story had a slow start, by the end the novel had captured my interest and totally had me creeping out! Spook city kind of creepy. Very Good.
Jun 19, 2018 rated it did not like it
Yeah, okay, whatever.
Sep 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing
omg the way i loved this series. HATED THE ENDING THOUGH.
Jan 27, 2022 rated it liked it
Honestly, there were a lot of times when I wished that scenes unfolded better. I don't like the ending. It's pretty much a cliffhanger, but I did like how it led me on to at least finish the book. ...more
Apr 11, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! Excellent writing! Very suspenseful. Highly recommend!
Jul 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pre-2020-read
Possessions by Nancy Holder
Book 1 of the Possessions series
Razorbill –September 3, 2009
Facebook: Yes
Rating: Absolutely loved it!!
Recommendations: YA fans, ghost stories, boarding school stories.

Lindsay has started Marlwood in the middle of the first semester. On her first day she manages to witness a strange ritual that she’s pretty sure she wasn’t supposed to see, irritate Dr. Ehrlenbach by not dressing appropriately. But she soon learns that this is the least of her problem
Jun 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review was originally published at Vampire Book Club.

Possessions is the creepy version of Mean Girls. (That’s a compliment.)

Lindsay is starting school at Marlwood, a private school in middle-of-nowhere California. She’s coming into the semester late, but the goal is to start fresh. While at her old school Lindsay was one of the cool kids. She vied for the Queen Bee’s attention and got it. Being a part of that group meant following the leader, being cruel to others and enduring taunting and
May 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: library, 3-stars
Title: Possessions (#1 in the Possessions series)
Author: Nancy Holder
Publisher: Razorbill
Length: 320 pages
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
My Rating Scale:
1 Star= I flat out hated it/terrible/I wanted to scratch my eyes out.
2 Stars= I didn’t like it
3 Stars= It was okay/I moderately liked it
4 Stars= I really liked it, but it wasn’t totally perfect
5 Stars= Holy literary gods! I LOVED this book!

Plot Summary:
Lindsay is forced to revamp herself at Marlwood Academy for girls. However, Mandy and her popular c
After Lindsay's big breakdown she decides to get out of San Diego and out of her old life. She decides to go to boarding school in upstate California. As soon as she arrives however she witnesses something she can't explain. As all the unexplainable things start to add up, Lindsay knows something has got to give. What she doesn't realize is that maybe what's going on may have less to do with the present and more to do with something grizzly in Marlwood's past. Now she has to fight to figure out ...more
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Possessions Series Featured on Private School Paranormals Week 1 13 Dec 02, 2010 05:09PM  

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Nancy Holder, New York Times Bestselling author of the WICKED Series, has just published CRUSADE - the first book in a new vampire series cowritten with Debbie Viguie. The last book her her Possession series is set to release in March 2011.

Nancy was born in Los Altos, California, and her family settled for a time in Walnut Creek. Her father, who taught at Stanford, joined the navy and the family t

Other books in the series

Possessions (3 books)
  • The Evil Within (Possessions, #2)
  • The Screaming Season (Possessions, #3)

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