Thursday, February 2, 2012

Review: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

A Monster Calls

Published: September 27th 2011, Candlewick Press
Pages: 215 pages
Part of a Series: No (inspired work from final story idea of Siobhan Dowd)
Read For a Challenge: The TBR Double Dare
Recommended By: Forever Young Adult
Teaser: "Stories are the wildest things of all, the monster rumbled. Stories chase and bite and hunt."
In a sentence or so: Life is hard and humans are complicated creatures. This is a story of Charlie facing the whole truth of life.
*Rating: 10/10
GoodReads Description:
This is an extraordinarily moving novel about coming to terms with loss. The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting. He’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming. . . .

This monster, though, is something different. Something ancient, something wild.

1. Type of story: Children's Horror/Grief (Free 1 point)
2.Consistency: It's such a powerful moment in this character's life any deviation would have ruined everything, so I'm glad to say Mr. Ness maintained very well. (1 point)
3. Flesh: The best monster ever! The Yew Tree, The Green Man, whatever you chose to call him. He can be frightening, could crush you if you should be punished or he could have come walking to teach you in a slightly more gentle, life-changing way. And Charlie - so strong on the outside, but needing desperately the attention and stories the monster comes to bring. And the few characters that jump from the mist Charlies life has become are impactful in hurtful or dismissive, or caring blips, and they're all wonderful. (1 point)
4. Flow: Up and down like the life the main character is living -- daytime is grey, soft,  passive; nights are action and horror...nightmares... monsters. (1 point)
5. Character Growth: Strength, truth, acceptance, these are all hard lessons and even more difficult virtues to maintain through life's most difficult times. (1 point)

6. A Point/ Purpose/ Journey: The power of truth, the lessons in stories, and the complication of real life and real people.(1 point)

7. Witty Dialogue: Not exactly-- it wasn't the wry humor I normally crave but it was wise and touching dialogue.(1 point)
8. Love: The human condition - love being necessary is present and possessing; but the love expressed here is only of the familial kind. (1 point)

9. Evoke Realistic Images: Illustrated! Beautiful Illustrations, but the writing is also so imaginative. The words will knock your breathe out and they would make any lesser artist useless. The illustrations go wonderfully with the words. (1 point)
10. Writing/Story telling: The writing seemed to personify The Green Man character. It was like story time with an ancient. Observant, teaching, enthralling, and entertaining. (1 point)

Reread Worthy: Often - within these pages are lessons I need to regularly be reminded of.
Recommendation: Everyone! (If they're old enough to understand serious illness and guilt, love and the complications of a real human life.)

*Click Rating to see post about my 10 aspects of a great book

1 comment:

  1. I love the way you reviewed the book. I tend to think of these things when I write my reviews as well. I'm getting this book very soon.