A Monster Calls
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A Monster Calls

4.25 of 5 stars 4.25  ·  rating details  ·  33,517 ratings  ·  6,313 reviews
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 nightmare 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, though, is something different. Something ancient, something wild. And i...more
Hardcover, 205 pages
Published September 15th 2011 by Candlewick Press (first published January 1st 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Cait
You can also find this review on my blog, Cait's Corner!

First things first: This almost never happens, but I have to admit that I cried at the end of this book; I clutched my cute little kitty-kat and bawled.



However, I didn't cry because of what the book in general, necessarily, but because of what it did to me. It drags out your saddest memories and pains, kicking and screaming, makes you look them right in the face and watch them all happen all over again, no matter how much you don't want...more
Wendy Darling
In the dark of night, when the house is still, what fears creep into your heart? For Conor O'Malley, his nightmares take the shape of a very old and very dangerous monster who visits him every night at seven minutes past midnight. He's half-convinced that these must be dreams of his fevered mind. But how can they be, when the visits are so vivid and when he finds physical evidence of the monster's existence the next day?

Conor's nightmares begin shortly after his mother starts her treatments for...more
karen
this book is a perfect modern fairy tale.

not a nice disney one with singing birds where everyone gets to go home with their prince and all of their limbs, but the older, darker kind involving foot-choppery and decimation.

lemme step back a bit. i added this book to my to-read shelf the moment i saw its cover here on goodreads.com. i knew nothing about it except that something in me bellowed "WANT!" i did not win it in the firstreads giveaway (naturally) and as more and more people began writing r...more
Steph Sinclair

A Monster Calls has to be the most inventive book I've read this year. And I find myself struggling to put in words how much this book has touched me. But it did. If you haven't read A Monster Calls, I suggest you immediately purchase it. Don't read the e-book because you would miss out on the amazing artwork. This book is stunning. Masterfully written and beautifully drawn.

I remember the first time a book made me cry like this. I was in eighth grade in my English class, sitting under my desk i...more
Emily May


I got back to my apartment in Bulgaria and thought I'd read a little bit of this novel before I went to bed. 2 hours later I was still sat in my original position but by this time I was sobbing my heart out. Literally sat there crying like a baby to myself. I doubt this book will be everyone's cup of tea but, whatever it has, it really worked it's magic on me.

I thought A Monster Calls was pretty much amazing in every way; from it's darkly beautiful illustrations (worth buying a paper copy for)...more
Reynje
I don’t think I can write a review for this book. I feel neither equipped, nor inclined, to make an evaluation of A Monster Calls based strictly on its literary style and merits. (Therefore, if you’re looking for an analysis of the plot, characters etc – you will be better served with another review).

So I’m writing a response instead. Or, I will attempt to.

I have a difficult relationship with books that deal with the subject of death and grief.

Occasionally, I find a book that is moving and re...more
The Holy Terror
I just read this book from cover to cover.

I have no idea how to rate it.

It is the worst book I've read.

I would never be able to recommend it,

because I hated it.

It's ripped my heart in two.

It'll make you think of losing the one person who means the most to you.

Or it'll make you think of those you've already lost.

It's not a happy book, but it's an important one.
Lyndsey
I don't believe that you can ever learn everything from a single story.

Many tales and many lessons contribute to an individual's personal truth. However, if you're looking for something that comes close to being a one-stop-shop for all your personal emotional needs, this would be it.

A Monster Calls contains breathtaking art by Jim Kay and is paired with a story of heartbreaking artistry from Patrick Ness.

Do I recommend this book? A million times yes and a million times no. How can I recommend so...more
Jo
Quick Note: This review is going to be extremely incoherent and incredibly useless. So if you have seen this book anywhere around and been a little bit curious…. I urge you to read it.
It probably won’t surprise you to see that I’ve decided not to write this review in my usual form. This is because the ‘High Points’ would consist of just a picture of the book. The Low Points would be redundant (I can usually find a few low points, even if I adore the book, but this one… I got nothing). I can’t t...more
Michelle, the Bookshelf Stalker
You want to know what a boohooing baby I am? It took me a month to write this review and it wasn't because I was being my normal lazy self. Everytime I tried to write, my eyes just filled with tears. I'm such a baby!

Ok.. here it is....

When I was a senior in high school, I wanted to go on a big senior trip that was going to occur right after graduation. I had no money. It was just me and my 19 year old sister. The school stated that I could fundraise but that is about all I could do. My sister’s...more
Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh
Feb 08, 2014 Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: The child within
Recommended to Florence (Lefty) by: Hooked by the Title and Cover
Minute I saw Jim Kay’s cover illustration I knew I’d read this. Edgy, his use of rapid, almost angry slashing strokes and a palette of grey capturing the tone that permeates this novel to perfection. Young adult but read it anyway, only takes a few hours and does what the best fables do, speaks to all ages. It never lets up from this hook of an opening line “The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do.” In the category of contemporary fairy tales I’m putting this right up there with C...more
Joe
The Ugly Cry.

You know the kind of crying that's so chest-heavingly horrific that you look at your face in the mirror during or after and what you see is so awful you think, "No wonder I'm single." or "If anyone saw me in this state I would definitely be single."?

The Ugly Cry.

I have wept during many books. Silent, salty tears. Or maybe a little sob escaping. Or maybe even a tough, sobering cry. But only three books have elicited the Ugly Cry.

1. Kate DiCamillo's The Miraculous Journey of Edward...more
Flannery
Nov 07, 2011 Flannery rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Flannery by: Goodreaders
Last Fourth of July, I played a party game called Time’s Up with some friends. The gist of the game is that everyone has a partner and you start with a certain number of cards as a group—say 40. Each one has a different movie/television show/book title on it and you use the same cards for the entire game so if you have great recall, the game is much easier. In the first round, you try to get your partner to guess the title by describing the movie without using specific words. (like Taboo) The s...more
Sophia.
Oh my God. This.
This is why I read.

I don't always find what I'm looking for in the books I read. Most of the time, I'm disappointed. Sometimes I'm so angry because the book is so bad and God, I wasted my time and I'm never getting it back. And, damn it, if it's so bad, why even keep on reading?

You keep reading, because sometimes, you find a book that blows you away. When you start the book, you're someone. And when you finish the book, you're someone else. Someone better. Someone different.

Bu...more
Catie
This book is so breathtakingly brilliant and I don’t have anything to say about it. I feel stunned.

My fellow reviewers have done such a wonderful job at keeping mum about the plot of this book, so I will promise to do the same. This review will be very brief.

All I can say is, if you’ve ever experienced grief or loss of any kind, then please, please, for the love of everything, just go and get this book. It’s indescribable, beautiful, and true. The writing is just spectacular. I’d like to gather...more
Simeon
And now it’s time to hand the baton on to you. Stories don’t end with the writers, however many started the race. So go. Run with it.
Make trouble.



Almost asleep with the illusion of paralysis at the ingress of dreams, when a monster calls. . . the Yew tree outside the window is walking, walking.



Written for very young readers, with ordinary and simple language, the story itself is complex, and transporting, really. Try not to get beyond halfway in one sitting, or you'll be up late into the night....more
Phoebe
I'll be reviewing Patrick Ness's A Monster Calls in greater depth for Strange Horizons a bit closer to its publication date, but I wanted to collect a few thoughts here.

Conor's mother has cancer. His dad is busy overseas tending to his new family. That leaves just Conor, his mum, and the yew tree in the backyard. And then Conor's mom's health takes a turn for the worse, his grandmother comes to visit, and a monster comes to call.

This is a very difficult book for me to approach or even discuss. M...more
Litchick (is stuck in the 19th century)
Read along with Cecile. Unfortunately neither of us liked it.

My motto should be “I don’t fucking get it”. Maybe I’ll change my name. Litchick (who doesn’t fucking get it). Can I drop the f-bomb in my GR name? I’m not sure. Maybe if I put q’s in there it’ll be less offensive. Litchick (who doesn’t fuqing get it). Better? No that looks kind of dumb, doesn’t it?

I use that word so much that I can’t really bring myself to butcher it anyway. And why should I? I’m not a fan of censorship. Litchick (w...more
Stephanie
Damn you Patrick Ness!!

You rip my heart out of my chest, squeeze it, bounce of the wall like a tennis ball, burn and shred it, put it back together and then shove it back in.

I’m not sure what to do with it now.

One night a monster came to call on Conor just after midnight. The monster looks like the yew tree from his back yard, but all big and scary and, well, walking about. But what the monster really is, is a monster we all deal with, he is the ‘fear of loss’ monster. Not ‘loss’ itself exactl...more
Amy (Foxy)
Sale(save 35%) $5.81 ->http://amzn.to/1gVV6zF
6/1/2014

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Beautiful and Profound!

In no way is this book a light read even though the genre is young adult. A Monster Calls is Conor's journey to the truth. A truth that no one wants to experience. Conor is a 13 year old boy who is struggling with a stressful situation.
"You do not write your life with words. You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do."-Monster

The last quarter of the boo...more
Raeleen Lemay
This book was so beautiful.

Alejandro
This is great book! And very quick to read so if you are interested on it, you'll find out that you'd read it in no time. Also, it helps that it's a page turner, since the story has many elements to keep you hooked to it. I hate to classify books for some specific age, since I think that books shouldn't have any age or genre. Books should be read by men or women at any age and they should be as good as effective. However, one can't deny that the author made this story thinking in kids and/or ear...more
Trudi
The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do.

If I could get the whole world to read just one book it would be A Monster Calls. I could list here a whole ream of adjectives to try and describe it -- beautiful, haunting, heartbreaking, lyrical -- but none do it justice. I would need to invent adjectives, and even then I would come up short.

I can tell you A Monster Calls is the warmest hug, the hug that makes you feel the most safe, when you are at your most frightened. The world can be a...more
Rachel Hartman
(I look at these five stars and think, no way. This book cannot be measured with stupid little stars.)

(I will just mention, too, that there are spoilers ahead. This is a book worth not being spoiled, so please do read it first before reading my review. You'll need a box of tissues, and your blankie.)

As always, I start from my own eccentricity: I am interested in the Monsters of the Mind. We all have them, the Grendels, the Keepers of the Eternal Shame, the beasts blocking the exits in the dark r...more
Aly (Fantasy4eva)
After all the wonderful reviews on here, I knew I had to buy this book. So I walked into my local book-store today, determined and with a purpose. Determined that I was going to leave with this book in my hand. I walked in knowing that I had only ever seen one copy of the book in the store. So all I could do was cling on to hope. Thank god. The relief I felt at A MONSTER CALLS sitting there, almost waiting for me, is just indescribable.

I started it two hours ago. I read it in one sitting.

I thin...more
Choco
(If the pics are messed up, read it on the blog.)

4.5
Spoiler free!


Remember when I read this? Yeah, so do I. This is basically how it went:

Everyone told me I was going to cry. Everyone.



So the whole time I was reading it, I told myself I must not cry.







Yeah. And it turns out… I didn’t cry.



But there was one little problem. My chest hurt so much. Because I tried very hard NOT to cry, it actually ended up hurting my chest. MY LUNGS. MY INSIDES. MY SOUL. I’m serious.



Kids, this means that when you are rea...more
Lucy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Giselle
Why do I read these books? Wait, why do I love them? DO I LIKE PAIN!?!?

Before this book even began, with just the author's note, I was already emotional to learn of the passing of Siobhan Dowd that inspired this novel. I'm so happy that Ness wrote it, and that it became such a well loved book. What a wonderful way to commemorate someone's life work.

A Monster Calls is a masterpiece in itself, with its terribly poignant account of a young boy learning to deal with his mother's battle with cancer....more
Kim  *Mo Chridhe*
**August 26, 2013**

Now that I've calmed down and gotten some sleep let me try to write something less melodramatic.

Conor is a thirteen-year-old boy who recently had to pick up more responsibilities at home while his single mother is undergoing treatments for her cancer. It's not easier at school either, because he's been targeted by bullies and somehow, people kept their distance once they found out about his mother. When her condition started to worsen, a monster showed itself to Conor and sta...more
KJ Shadows
Nov 03, 2011 KJ Shadows rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone on this planet & the universe
Recommended to KJ Shadows by: SL Chan, Wendy Darling, Cait, Reynje, Heid21, Phoebe North
5 Stars


OMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMG!!!jfgkdhfgf992388010101!!!

Yeah. That was pretty much my reaction at the end.

Words can't really even express how greatful I am that I actually went in and picked this up even though it felt awkward asking at the counter for a children's book. Was it just me or did it feel like it was geared towards adults too? Maybe because in the end we could all learn a lesson.

It was cute, creative, inspirational. I'm sure nothing I say is going to top some of the reviews, infact...more
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Patrick Ness, an award-winning novelist, has written for England’s Radio 4 and Sunday Telegraph and is a literary critic for The Guardian. He has written many books, including the Chaos Walking Trilogy, The Crash of Hennington, Topics About Which I Know Nothing, and A Monster Calls.

He has won numerous awards, including the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Booktrust Teenage Prize, and the Co...more
More about Patrick Ness...
The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking, #1) The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking, #2) Monsters of Men (Chaos Walking, #3) More Than This The New World (Chaos Walking, #0.5)

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“You do not write your life with words...You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.” 962 likes
“There is not always a good guy. Nor is there always a bad one. Most people are somewhere in between.” 586 likes
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