In X meets Y
fashion, I'd call Possessions
something like "Mean Girls
meets the paranormal". It was a quick but definitely creepy read that had me turning pages like crazy towards the end - with an ending that made me go "whoa" and take a second or two before it really sank in.
The characters are well-realised, with Lindsay as a great protagonist right in the center. She had an excellent voice, realistic but also chilling in her descriptions. The way she described what happened to one of the girls in the school over time really sent shudders down my spine, so that was very well done indeed. While she is very worried that she might have another breakdown, especially in light of the events of what is happening, she still remains incredibly strong and very impressive, but doesn't wander out into the realms of being an unrealistic character. Most of the other girls were the same (a few did get lost around the edges though as the cast of characters grew, and I did become confused as to who was who amongst those ones), and Mandy really impressed me in particular - she also caused me, at one point, to make an expression that can only be expressed through emoticons: D:
(However that disturbed me, it was in a "good way", not because it was ridiculous or stupid)
Unfortunately a few of the relationships between the girls seemed a bit weak at times, such as when Lindsay called her roommate her best friend. Not it is very possible that she says this because even someone she has only known a month is a friend as opposed to people she knew before her breakdown, but it would have been nicer to see a little bit more confirmation if that were the case. There was also a fair bit of repetition in the painting of the girls as rich - the reader would get that after the first time or so, so there was little need for further, in-depth descriptions into the cost-factor of parties and things.
As for the paranormal aspect of the plot I found that to be really well done. Although there were a few things I picked up on, it still kept me guessing all the way through, and I found myself having mis-guessed a few times even. The exploration into the school's history as a home for wayward girls was very interesting and I would like to see some more of that in the sequel when it comes out. The one slightly-negative thing I would like to say would be that, although there were first hints to this paranormal aspect right at the start it would have been nicer to have it appear earlier and a little stronger than it did. Perhaps in future books the rich girl repetition would be cast aside in favour of more paranormal and creepiness - I know I would welcome it.
Oh, and if you are like and do not do the horror movies thing, don't make the same mistake I did: no matter how much you want to find out what happens next, don't keep reading after midnight. :P I know, I know, I have a weak constitution sometimes...
Although I initially thought I was perhaps a little too old for this book (the main characters are fifteen or so, and I usually end up reading books with characters of around seventeen), the paranormal side of the plot definitely proved me wrong there, resulting in Possessions
being a fun and entertaining read, with more than a little dose of creepiness. Its sequel, The Evil Within
, is out June 2010, and I will be looking forward to it.