Children's fiction, Drama

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness


There will be few who have not heard of this book. The blurb, the numerous different reviews ranging from detailed to purely emotional, had me thinking that I should at least check it out.

It is obviously targeted at children but is something that will appeal to adults as well. The most vital point is the lack of saccharine sweetness in dealing with grief. Conor’s mother is ill, and things look bleaker than his mother seems to be revealing outright. He is suddenly visited by an ancient tree/monster. He offers to tell him three stories, and that would help Conor understand. Each story does not go the way either Conor or us unwary readers would assume they would. It is a pretty quick read and filled with those poignant moments that make it worth shedding tears over.

It was a pretty great read, and I would recommend it to others who want to try something different, and it is also a sort of coming of age story. The narration is pretty unusual, and the whole thing in its entirety was unexpected. Considering the size of the book, I have nothing more to add in terms of the review without repeating myself.

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