Tuesday 10 April 2012

A MONSTER CALLS by Patrick Ness (from an original idea by Siobhan Dowd)

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.

This is a book I've had my eye on for a while, so when I found out my local library was able to get it in for me, I couldn't wait to get stuck into it.

Firstly, I want to start by saying that this book looks beautiful. This was the hardback edition and the black and white illustrations throughout the whole thing are absolutely stunning.

Also, the Author's Note at the beginning was very moving. I think Patrick Ness did an amazing job with this book and he should be very proud of himself.

Now, the story. Wow. Beautiful. Sad. Thrilling. Moving. Just, wow. I was so captivated by Conor's story that I found it hard to put the book down and ended up reading it in two sittings.

Conor is a young boy with a very sick mother. She has cancer and as sick as she becomes, he's determined not to face his nightmares and keep believing that she'll be okay. But when a monster--who also happens to be an ancient yew tree near his house--comes calling, his whole life changes. This monster wants to tell him three tales in exchange for one of Conor's. He also wants the truth. But more than anything, he wants Conor to face up to his nightmare and accept the truth for himself.

I have to admit that this story made me shed tears. It's beautifully written and I felt everything poor Conor went through. I'll never forget this tale, and I'm pretty sure I'll be buying myself a copy of this book to put on my keeper shelf.

Beautiful. I loved it!

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