The Summoning by Hilary Monahan is about four teenage girls who suffer the consequences of summoning "Bloody Mary." This grabbed my attention because at age eleven, I heard the myth of Bloody Mary at a sleep over. Though we didn't summon her, the image freaked me out, especially, when I entered my parents room where my mother's closet doors were mirrored. I'm not much of a prologue gal, but it worked as a letter from Mary Worth to her sister in 1863. I loved the historical feel here. The conjuring begins at the start of chapter one, and bleeds into page-turning moments chapter after chapter.The voices of the four girls were great, but when one girl gets taken, it wasn't much of an event for two of the girls, one especially, Jess-the main conjurer. She had no redeeming qualities, whatsoever. I felt more for Bloody Mary.
BM has this whole world behind the mirror, and she takes people there who never return, which I found fascinating. But, I also wondered why. Does it make her stronger? Do the kidnapped keep her company? I was disappointed that my question went unanswered. BM was a frightening vision, but the beetles appearing made me think of a Tim Burton animated flick. I would've taken the beetles seriously if Hilary wove in one of the symbolic meanings derived from Egypt: Creation, rebirth, regeneration, and/or Shamanic: Dreams and astral travel. The ending didn't feel like an ending, so maybe in a bloody sequel? It might be a bit too bloody for me. (I was married to a bloody Brit for seven years, ok?)