Review: 10 Reasons Conversion is Better Than The Fever

February 5, 2017     erinthebooknut     10 Reasons, Book review

Review: 10 Reasons Conversion is Better Than The FeverConversion by Katherine Howe
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers on July 1st 2014
Pages: 402

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane comes a chilling mystery—Prep meets The Crucible.   It’s senior year at St. Joan’s Academy, and school is a pressure cooker. College applications, the battle for valedictorian, deciphering boys’ texts: Through it all, Colleen Rowley and her friends are expected to keep it together. Until they can’t.   First it’s the school’s queen bee, Clara Rutherford, who suddenly falls into uncontrollable tics in the middle of class. Her mystery illness quickly spreads to her closest clique of friends, then more students and symptoms follow: seizures, hair loss, violent coughing fits. St. Joan’s buzzes with rumor; rumor blossoms into full-blown panic.   Soon the media descends on Danvers, Massachusetts, as everyone scrambles to find something, or someone, to blame. Pollution? Stress? Or are the girls faking? Only Colleen—who’s been reading The Crucible for extra credit—comes to realize what nobody else has: Danvers was once Salem Village, where another group of girls suffered from a similarly bizarre epidemic three centuries ago . . .   Inspired by true events—from seventeenth-century colonial life to the halls of a modern-day high school—Conversion casts a spell. With her signature wit and passion, New York Times bestselling author Katherine Howe delivers an exciting and suspenseful novel, a chilling mystery that raises the question, what’s really happening to the girls at St. Joan’s?

So if you’ve read both Conversion by Katherine Howe and The Fever by Megan Abbott you’ll notice a lot of similarities. From the unexplained illnesses to the mystery to the hysteria surrounding it, it’s like reading the same story from different POVs.

That being said once definitely stands out and blows the other way. Conversion is what I wanted The Fever to be. I wish I had read it first. So here are the 10 reasons Conversion is better than The Fever.

  1. The characters are more likable. The Fever’s characters are dull and not very likable people while Conversion’s characters are bright and interesting.
  2. The pacing. The Fever is slow and seems to drag on a lot in the middle where Conversion shines with it’s backwards look into the Witch Trials and compares it to the present day happenings.
  3. The style. While The Fever has a sort of noir crime feel just as all of Abbott’s books do, Conversion is much more modern with it’s writing style.
  4. The mystery. The Fever’s mystery is very predictable while Conversion keeps turning you on your head every time you thing you might have an answer. And even in the end you’re not sure what to believe.
  5. The ending. The ending was the only thing I really liked about The Fever but Conversion does it better. Is it paranormal? Isn’t it? What’s really going on? I feel like I was given a chance to make my own decision.
  6. The history. The Fever doesn’t have the Salem elements that are present in Conversion but those are some of what makes Conversion that much better.
  7. The tone. The Fever seems like it’s trying too hard while Conversion just lets itself be what it is. It’s very high school clique oriented and it doesn’t shy away from that while The Fever tried to be a lot more adult. It doesn’t work.
  8. I’m obsessed with the Witch Trials. Because of this I was immediately more fascinated with the goings on in this story over the other.
  9. Megan Abbott’s books are very hit and miss. I ended up hating the Fever, Loving End of Everything, and landed somewhere in the middle with Dare Me. Katherine Howe is much more consistent.
  10. It’s more diverse.

So there you have it. The 1o reasons Conversion is better than The Fever.

Thoughts? Questions? Leave them in the comments.

From my shelf to yours,



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