Review: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
Original idea from by Siobhan Dowd. Illustrated by Jim Kay. Published by Walker Books in 2011.
Won the Carnegie Medal and the Greenaway Medal in 2012.
At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. 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 monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd– whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself– Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined. (Goodreads)
This is one of those books I bought just because everyone that I knew who read it raved about it. I was not disappointed. After finishing The Wicked Girls I had to read something short and (fingers crossed) something good. Finished in one setting even though it kept me up past my bedtime. Once you start you just have to keep reading.What a great and wonderful children’s book.
Characters 4. Although the characters are not as developed as they would have been in a longer story or a typical novel Ness did an excellent job giving each character their own voice.
Setting 5 The setting was Conor’s house, his school, his grandmother’s house, and a hospital. Each where well defined and easily imagined.
Plot – 5 The plot was fast paced and easy to follow. No confusion, no dull points, all “action”.
Purpose – 5 This is a great story and children and adults alike. Heavy and thought provoking. Won’t say more because #nospoilers.
Resolution 4 I did enjoy the outcome/ending but it wasn’t perfectly clear what happened and maybe another 10 pages could have clearer some things up.
Great book so glad I picked it up! Would recommend.
To see A Monster Calls Review fast forward to 6:20.
Patrick Ness, an award-winning novelist, has written for England’s Radio 4 and Sunday Telegraph and is a literary critic for The Guardian. He has written many books, including the Chaos Walking Trilogy, The Crash of Hennington, Topics About Which I Know Nothing, and A Monster Calls.
He has won numerous awards, including the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Booktrust Teenage Prize, and the Costa Children’s Book Award. Born in Virginia, he currently lives in London.