A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness

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Conor has the same dream every night, ever since his mother first fell ill, ever since she started the treatments that don’t quite seem to be working. But tonight is different. Tonight, when he wakes, there’s a visitor at his window. It’s ancient, elemental, a force of nature. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth.

Patrick Ness takes the final idea of the late, award-winning writer Siobhan Dowd and weaves an extraordinary and heartbreaking tale of mischief, healing and above all, the courage it takes to survive

I’ve been mulling this book over for an hour or two, because I don’t really know what to say about it.

I mean… I did like it- after the first 50 pages or so. It was really quotable (or, at least, the monster was quotable.) and it was meaningful and it almost did make me cry (Almost, since I was at work and I was not going to cry in case customers came in)

I loved the stories the monster told. They were incredibly clever and beautiful, but then, I expect nothing less from Patrick Ness. This is only the second book of his I have read, but he is already becoming a firm favourite of mine for his storytelling.

I’m not actually sure why I didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. At the start, the writing annoyed me, but I got used to it. But still, something about it just irritated me the whole way through. Maybe it was Conor- a character I understood- I was the invisible one at school, and sometimes it is more painful than anything else people can throw at you. But while I empathized with him, for most of the story, I didn’t really care enough about him to be interested.

I seriously can’t even put into words why.

However, though I did like the story in the end, I don’t really understand all the hype around it- yes, I liked it, but I didn’t love it. It doesn’t make me want to reread it again, it didn’t make me want to jump up and instantly start talking about it with all the people I know that have read it. It was just a good read.

(Sidenote- I also went to see the film and that is really good. The way the monsters stories are shown is just stunning)

four stars

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