Book Reviews · Middle Grade Book Reviews

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness (SPOILERS)

8621462Title: A Monster Calls
Author: Patrick Ness
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction
Sub-Genre(s): Fantasy
Series: N/A
Published On: September 27th 2011
Publisher: Walker Books
Pages: 216
Format: Hardcover
Source: Bought
ISBN 1406311529 (ISBN13: 9781406311525)
Purchase: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository

The monster showed up 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 one 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 is something different, though. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.

It wants the truth.


My Thoughts

Even though I never would have picked this book up without the Taken star playing the leading roll in the book to movie adaptation I still enjoyed it.

But not as much as I would have liked.

I Loved…

 Getting to the Point: I liked that it picked up and began building steam from the first page.

The Monster: AKA Liam Neeson wasn’t real… at least not to everyone.

Cover/Dust Jacket: The hardcover edition of this book is beautiful.

I Didn’t Love…

There Was Something Missing: I can’t put my finger on it, but the story was lacking something.

Characters: As realistic as it is, I hated that the mom passed away.

I Didn’t Get the Feels: I really wanted to feel something when reading this book. I was expecting an emotional experience similar to when I read The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Sadly I didn’t cry… or smile.

Unrealistic: As a writer I find myself questioning authors’ choices when staging a story or a character’s relationship with others. While reading I hated the way everyone in Conor’s life seemed to shut him out, as if his feelings weren’t normal for a child loosing his mother to cancer, but afterwards I wondered if Ness chose to create Conor in this light to show his loneliness. I guess I’ll never know.

A Jeweled Rating

a jeweled rating


You can learn more about my rating system HERE.

About the Author

Patrick Ness photpPatrick Ness

I’m Patrick Ness. I claim three states in America as my home (as Americans are wont to do): I was born in Virginia, my first memories are Hawaiian, and I went to junior high and high school in Washington. Then I lived in California for college (at USC) and moved to the United Kingdom in 1999, where I’ve lived (mostly in London) ever since.

I’ve written nine books: 2 novels for adults (The Crash of Hennington and The Crane Wife), 1 short story collection for adults (Topics About Which I Know Nothing) and 6 novels for young adults (The Knife of Never Letting Go, The Ask and the Answer, Monsters of Men, A Monster Calls, More Than This and The Rest of Us Just Live Here).

For these books, I’ve won the Carnegie Medal twice, the Costa Children’s Book Award, the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Red House Book Award… learn more on Patrick’s website.



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