The Ninja Reviews.... A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
Ever since Conor's mother started her treatments again, he's dreamed a horrible nightmare with a monster too terrible to even speak of. So when a monster appears in reality one night, Conor expects the one from his nightmare. Instead, he is approached by something different. This monster, taking the form of a yew tree, is something old, mysterious, and wild. The monster claims "I am the spine that the mountains hang upon! I am the tears that the rivers cry! I am the lungs that breathe the wind!"
The monster doesn't often come walking, but he claims that Conor called him for a purpose. The monster will call three times to tell Conor three stories. Then Conor will tell the monster a story. But not any story. It has to be the truth. Conor's ultimate truth. That which has plagued his dreams for many sleepless nights. It is this that terrifies Conor, not the monster.
As the story goes on we learn the tumultuous life Conor leads - his mother with cancer, his long-gone father, his crazy grandmother, his inability to feel. Conor is full of anger and pain, but is an incredibly endearing character. The reader sympathizes with him all through the book. We hope and struggle with him, and long to topple his mountainous problems. Author Ness helps the reader realize the fear of pain through the eyes of a boy that shoulders problems that are as big as a monster.
But this brings me to my one and only problem....the audiobook is astoundingly narrated by Jacob Isaacs (Lucius Malfoy in the Potter movies) but the drawings in the physical book are haunting and gritty, fitting in perfectly with the book. I listened to this book and felt totally transported into the book through Isaacs voice. But you'll have to make up your own mind how you will read this book. Cause you are going to read it. No, seriously, you are. It's just that good.
This book was inspired by the ideas of author Siobhan Dowd, an amazing author in her own right who passed away in 2007 after her own battle with cancer. A Monster Calls is on the 2012 Lone Star list. If you liked this book then try: