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Say Her Name Book Cover Say Her Name
James Dawson
Young Adult, Horror, Mystery
Hot Key Books
June 5, 2014
Pinoy Book Tours

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... A truly spine-chilling yet witty horror from shortlisted 'Queen of Teen' author James Dawson.


When I first found this book listed as part of the book tour list for this month, I initially didn’t want to sign up for it. Truth be told, I’m a bit of a scaredy-cat. At this day and age, I am still afraid of the dark (haha!). I knew that the only time I’d be able to read books would be at night when I’m up alone and that made the prospect of reading this book scarier for me.


However, I was up for a change because I’ve been reading a lot of young adult romances and dystopian novels recently. Also, the last time I read a horror story was way back in the 90s when I used to read Christopher Pike novels, and those were tame compared to this one. I expected to read this one within 2 days but I ended up finishing it in about 5 hours only. Yup, I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning to finish reading this because I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN.


In the first couple of chapters, it felt like I was reading about the typical young adult horror novel where the characters are in school and the usual high school stereotypes are present. There’s a queen bee and her team of mean girls. The main character is the awkward and quiet but smart girl, Roberta “Bobbie” Rowe and her best friend is the cool and supportive, Naya. Of course, there’s also the good-looking and at first seemingly unreachable boy from the other school, Caine. In that sense, it would be easy to assume that this novel is a bit predictable but oh boy, James Dawson did such a great job adding twists and turns to this novel and made the traditional story of Bloody Mary his own.


You know those dumb girl characters in a lot of the 90s horror flicks? Bobbie is so not like them and that’s what I love about her. The instance that she discovered that she and her friends were under the Bloody Mary curse, she made a decision to try her best to find out how to break it. She did not give up no matter how hopeless the situation was. She’s a fighter.


I also love her budding romance with Caine. There wasn’t too much of it in the novel and didn’t distract me from the other important stuff going on. I love that Caine is supportive and strong and never gave up too. I was rooting for them the whole time.


But what I love most about this novel is how James Dawson describes each scary scene. His writing seriously made me feel like I was watching a movie. And that’s what makes this such a bone-chilling, spine-tingling read. This is one of the reasons why I couldn’t put the book down. I wanted to know as soon as possible how the story will end. And oh my gosh, the ending. Scared the hell out of me! At the same time, I was scared of having to put the book down and turn off the lights to go to bed. I knew I wouldn’t be able to sleep in the dark. I also knew that I wouldn’t be able to look in the mirror for while without my heart pumping a little. That is how scary it was.


Add that to the fact that the twists in the story are really surprising  but in the end you know it all makes sense. I really think this would make for a great horror movie. I’d be falling in line to watch it.


I never thought I’d say this about a horror novel but I really, really loved it! I’m a new James Dawson fan and I can’t wait to read more of his work.


To read the other reviews in this tour, click here.


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  1. Interesting… I’m just not sure if I’m ready to read something like this since the only time I have now is at night. 😀
    Kim Reyes recently posted…Daddy A Cooks: No Fail Grilled Tilapia Recipe for Sunday BarbecuesMy Profile

    1. I wasn’t so sure about reading it either but I’m glad I did. 🙂
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  2. I don’t watch horror movies so I don’t think I will read this book. hehehe! #scaryforme
    Michi recently posted…Custom Rubber StampsMy Profile

  3. I saw this on my sister’s stash. I’m not big on all things horror, but perhaps I’ll give this one a try.
    rainbowjournal.com recently posted…Mt. Ijen: Getting There and AccommodationsMy Profile

  4. Scary :-). I am found of reading and watching scary movie before until i decided not to scare myself anymore ha ha ha. Will check this out when I’m in the mood to be scares again :-).
    sherlane recently posted…My Learning and Experience in the Entrepreneur Success SummitMy Profile

  5. Eeek you know I’m so duwag. I don’t think that my heart can handle a horror novel!
    Patty | MrsC recently posted…MrsC – 1, Ipis – 0My Profile

  6. Interesting plot. I love unpredictable stories. Twists are cool because they make you want to finish reading the book ASAP.

  7. I’m not into reading books / novels. I’m more into Self-help books. Not sure if I am ready to read this, hehehe!
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  8. Gad! This is so interesting. I love books. I am no bookworm, but I am fond reading books. I’m into Dystopian, Sci-fi, Horror, Fiction (Conspiracy)… I sometimes read love story, like John Green’s and Nicholas Sparks’s. Must read! Great review!
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  9. I have 2 horror books here that I have never tried reading… maybe pag brave enough nako… matatakutin lang talaga and also because night time lang ako nakakapagbasa.. probably soon… great review though (“,)

  10. Not a fan of these genre novels. But heck, maybe I can recommend this book to my sister since she’s a fan of these type of literary works at all. Review’s nicely done though.
    slickmaster recently posted…Umuwi Na Si LeBron. Eh Ano Ngayon?My Profile

  11. It’s been a long time that I read novels on my free time. Great book review! I was wondering if meron yan sa National Book Store? fond of reading horror and suspense kind of novels.

  12. Sounds like something a horror fan would enjoy. Not much of a horror story fan, though.
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  13. Cool! I need a copy of this one for me and my college friend. We love scary stories! 🙂
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  14. I love scary stories! I think I’m gonna like this book
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