A Monster Calls

by Patrick Ness (Walker Books) ISBN 978-1-4063-3651-1

 

Patrick Ness has created an emotional story of innocence and acceptance.

 

Ten-year-old Conor is struggling to come to terms with his mother’s cancer. One night a monster appears to him, but it is not the monster he is expecting. It is not the monster from his nightmare. The nightmare so terrible, he can’t talk about it.

 

As the monster continues to visit, he tells Conor three stories meant to hold clues to help Conor understand his pain. Instead the stories confuse and anger Conor as the monster tries to convey the complexity of our human emotions. Conor is taken on a powerful journey of acceptance. He is finally forced to face the real monster, the scariest monster of all – the truth.

 

This novel will have you wiping away the tears. The characters are close to home and the loneliness of this little boy is heart breaking. There is a child-like innocence and a gentle humour elegantly woven into this story that makes it endearing.

 

Though A Monster Calls is described as a children’s book, it is so timeless and touching I would recommend it for young and old. The simplicity is masterful. A lovely read.

 

Victoria Malakou

5/5

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