Masque Of The Red Death by Bethany Griffin Review

Bethany Griffin

Publication Date:
April 24, 2012

Harpercollins Canada

Hardcover, 400 pages

CAD $18.99

An ARC was provided by Harpercollins Canada for review! Thank you!




Everything is in ruins.

A devastating plague has decimated the population, and those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles around them.

So what does Araby Worth have to live for?

Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery makeup . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.

But in the depths of the club?in the depths of her own despair?Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club, and Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.

And Araby may find not just something to live for, but something to fight for?no matter what it costs her.


Ahh steam punk meets dystopia in a wonderful book of a plague that installs fear and panic. If anyone has known to live in a world where a pandemic has happened, you can read about it in Masque of the Red Death. Wearing masques are the norm. The virus is everywhere and people make do with what they have including Araby, daughter of the scientist who engineered the masques that citizens wear. She’s caught in her lifestyle of visiting The Debauchary Club and getting high on drugs. What a dreary and desolate world it has become. Half of the population has died and there are the poor who are employed by the wealthy to deliver messages and others who clean the streets that are littered with bodies. *shudders*

Incredible world building and I love how the girls wear corsets and gowns. It takes you back to the Victorian Age with all the steampunk carriages too. I haven’t actually read the original short story from Edgar Allen Poe, but I would love to so I would be able to compare the two. Bethany Giffin paints a story with enough mystery, and danger that kept me turning every page.

As for the primary characters like Araby I admired her will to help Will’s family as well as her own. Even helping Elliott made her such a likable character. Will was your definite brooding manly character, but I liked Elliott just because he was trying to help the people and to take down his uncle’s strict clutches.

Pick up Masque of the Red Death and be transported in the world where only the healthy can live freely.

Rating 4/5


“Just because you don’t want to see something doesn’t mean that it will go away. Do you think inhumanity doesn’t exist if you pretend not to see it? Or maybe get too drunk to understand? We’ve forgotten the things that make life worthwhile.”–Elliott (174)

“You have to remember that there are reasons to live, and that at last a few people are decent, and that the world is worthwhile some of the time, okay?”–Will (268)

Giselle San Miguel is a freelance web designer who has a voracious appetite for reading and manages her own book blog at She also enjoys writing, design, movies, and photography.