Tuesday, January 17, 2017


Image Credit: goodreads.com
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Patrick Ness took Siobhan Dowd's idea and completed what would have been her fifth book - In A Monster Calls. Sadly, Dowd lost her own battle with cancer before she could realize her idea.

In this fantasy book, we meet 13-year old, Conor O'Malley who is grappling with the imminent death of his mother who is stricken with cancer. Through his dreams, he meets a monster who helps him come to terms with what is happening in reality.

This is a children's novel, so it is told in such a way that a young reader could relate. However, there are beautiful nuggets of wisdom sprinkled throughout this ~200-page book. The way in which Ness conveys the confused emotions of a youngster having to cope with such an adult problem makes this story a masterpiece.

A Monster Calls was also made into a movie starring Lewis MacDougall as Conor and Liam Neeson as the Monster, and it was released Christmas 2016. It seems as though the film did not have wide range appeal as it was only widely released for a few weeks. I haven't seen the film, but I highly recommend the book. And as I'm sure my fellow readers know, the book is always better!

To sum up my review of this book, I will close with one of the more poignant quotes from the story. I hope it offers comfort to those who might need it:
Belief is half of all healing. Belief in the cure, belief in the future that awaits. 
Recommendation: I think Ness did Dowd justice in telling a story of grief in such a creative way. This is a gift for children (and people, in general) who have taken on the challenge of dealing with such a difficult situation. May you believe and be healed.

Until next time ... Read on!


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