Hi friends! Today I have a review of “The Mary Shelley Club” by Gold Moldavsky for you. This book was such a fun and exciting read, and I’m so pumped to share more about it with you. It is on sale now (04/13/21) and comes at my highest recommendation. An eARC was provided to me by Macmillan. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Continue reading to check out my review and learn more about the book and author!
New York Times – bestselling author Goldy Moldavsky delivers a deliciously twisty YA thriller that’s Scream meets Karen McManus about a mysterious club with an obsession for horror.
New girl Rachel Chavez is eager to make a fresh start at Manchester Prep. But as one of the few scholarship kids, Rachel struggles to fit in, and when she gets caught up in a prank gone awry, she ends up with more enemies than friends.
To her surprise, however, the prank attracts the attention of the Mary Shelley Club, a secret club of students with one objective: come up with the scariest prank to orchestrate real fear. But as the pranks escalate, the competition turns cutthroat and takes on a life of its own.
When the tables are turned and someone targets the club itself, Rachel must track down the real-life monster in their midst . . . even if it means finally confronting the dark secrets from her past.
I don’t read too many thrillers–both YA and adult–but after reading Goldy Moldavsky’s “The Mary Shelley Club,” I can definitely say that is likely to change. “The Mary Shelley Club” was such a fun, captivating, and addicting read! I literally did not put it down once I started–literally. I read it one sitting.
Like our main characters, I’m a scary movie fan. And “The Mary Shelley Club” is being promoted as Scream meets Gossip Girl. I couldn’t think of a better comparison. It has the awareness of Scream and the rich-kid-drama-mystery of Gossip Girl. Seriously, if you’re a fan of Scream or horror movies in general, I think this book will be right up your street. It’s almost like a tribute to horror movie fans. It’s smart, fast, unpredictable, and I can easily see it adapted for screen.
(Side-note: Along with an adaptation, I really would love to see some sort of sequel or companion novel to “The Mary Shelley Club.” So, Goldy? If you’re reading this, hi. Please give us more. Thank you.)
Our cast of characters is great. It’s a diverse bunch and each one of them jumps off the page. Our main character is Rachel Chavez, who has gone through a terrible ordeal the year before and is now the new girl at Manchester Prep. She’s smart and funny. I really enjoyed reading her point of view, and next to her love for horror, I found her very relatable in terms of dealing with her anxiety/PTSD.
There are lots of other key characters in “The Mary Shelley Club,” but I think it’s best to go into this story somewhat blind. Even mentioning certain character to you would qualify as a spoiler, so I will refrain in this review. However, something I really enjoyed about this book that I can mention were the select chapters that were set from the point of views of sometimes-one-off side characters. The entire book is told from Rachel’s point of view, except for these few chapters that are dispersed throughout. Reading them feels like watching a scary movie, and getting to switch the focus to the scene where the next victim meets their end, before going back to our lead’s point of view. It sounds like it shouldn’t work in a book, being thrown into the mind of someone for just one chapter, but it works so well.
It’s sort of hard to review or talk about a thriller/mystery book without including major spoilers. That being said, I feel it’s best to leave this review right here with some final thoughts.
“The Mary Shelley Club” is a fantastic read for any thriller reader or scary movie fan. The mystery is impeccable–every moment when I thought I had everything figured out, a twist would be thrown in the mix and my theories would be tossed out the window. The characters are wonderful–funny, relatable, and unique. The story itself is extremely compelling–you won’t want to put it down until you finish.
★★★★☆ = Excellent
About Goldy Moldavsky
Goldy Moldavsky was born in Lima, Peru, and grew up in Brooklyn, where she still lives. Her novels include the New York Times bestseller, KILL THE BOY BAND, NO GOOD DEED, and the upcoming THE MARY SHELLEY CLUB (Henry Holt Books, 2021); her love of 80s movies, 90s boy bands, and horror flicks hugely influences her work. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram @goldywrites.
She is represented by Jenny Bent at the Bent Agency.