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My Name is Monster

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  64 ratings  ·  44 reviews
After the Sickness has killed off her parents, and the bombs have fallen on the last safe cities, Monster emerges from the arctic vault which has kept her alive. When she washes up on the coast of Scotland, everyone she knows is dead, and she believes she is alone in an empty world.

Monster begins the long walk south, scavenging and learning the contours of this familiar la
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published June 6th 2019 by Canongate Books Ltd.
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3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  64 ratings  ·  44 reviews

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I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Monster is the only human left following an apocalyptic war and the ensuing sickness. Left by herself she’s free to explore the world as she pleases, until she finds a child, a new Monster, to nurture her loneliness and teach her the ways to survive this new world.

The descriptions of the present world are good, although there’s no real ‘newness’ about it. We’ve read this story before, in a number of post apocalyptic Britain’s. How
This book has a great premise. It's a book of the apocalyptic variety and starts out with a woman named Monster, who is seemingly the only person left alive after some sort of war and a sickness... The book is purposefully vague. We see how Monster struggles to survive to find food, water, safe shelter... Until one day she finds a child whom she decides to name Monster while she becomes known as Mother. It is explained that Monster means survivor whereas Mother means creator.

I very much enjoyed
Joanne Harris
A terrific piece of writing; tough and tender and insightful. Loved it.
Lel Budge
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This is Katie Hale’s debut novel and I was so intrigue by the post apocalyptic premise and an original sounding blurb.

I found this to be a wonderfully well written book. The descriptive language drew me in to this emotional, cold and dark world.

This is a post apocalyptic story of a young woman who believes she is the only person left alive after The Sickness. Her name is Monster, a nickname given to her by her parents when she was younger and a bit of a loner.

Monster manages to survive by making
Lucy Banks
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Post apocalyptic novel told from an interesting viewpoint.

I eagerly requested this book from Netgalley as my fellow book-reviewers suggested it might be my sort of thing. And it was... kind of. I enjoyed it, but had a few minor reservations.

It tells the tale of 'Monster' - a woman who is left alone after humanity has been wiped out by war and the Sickness. She was fortunate enough to be in a Seed Store when things wer
Dec 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
An insubstantial story in terms of action, but with surprising depth as the relationship between ‘Mother’ and her protegee ‘Monster’ unfolds. Both have survived the war and sickness that has destroyed practically every human on earth and meet by chance during one of Mother’s forays into the city for supplies. She takes the child back to her farm, nurtures her body back to health and teaches her the skills she needs to survive, many of them hangovers from her own lonely, excluded childhood back i ...more
Erica (ricci.reads)
'My Name Is Monster' by Katie Hale is a work of dystopian fiction which uses stark language to convey the desolation of our main characters existence.
'Monster' believes that she is the only surviving human in post-apocalyptic Britain but finds a girl who she becomes something of a mother figure to, the first part of the novel being from Monsters perspective and the second part of the novel being the girls.

While I appreciate the concept and why it is written in such a way, it was a bleak reading
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
It is always a brave thing to write an entire book from just one or two points of view. No supporting characters, very little supporting action. Just one person and their thoughts. It is particularly brave to make that one central POV character not particularly likable.

The writing itself is simply lovely. Very prettily written and it's so easy to just devour this book in one or two sittings. The atmosphere is fantastic and the psychology is fascinating.

I am a bit of a sucker for post-apocalypt
May 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A complex, accomplished debut. The prose dazzles while the themes of feminism, power and fertility sneak in for a gut-punch. It kept me gripped from the first page, and the characters continue to live and breathe in my imagination.
Trish Leggat
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I picked this on NetGalley for the sheer reason that it intrigued me in every way - the cover, the Synopsis and the reviews on GoodReads. It sounded so completely different from anything I had ever read before. This is a debut novel by a acclaimed poet and as soon as you start reading you call tell. This is an exceptionally beautifully written book. The language is incredible, and how things are described had me hooked. I could almost feel the world that she built, the cold, the heat, the wet, t ...more
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interest and thought provoking read, not always easy at times and quite often thought provoking. The characters are well written and while not always likeable the book keeps you hooked and involved. A great read for something a bit darker and to make you think.

Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for a free copy for an honest review
Dec 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Having believed I’d covered most post-apocalyptic themes in fiction, I was caught off guard by how much I enjoyed this book. Hale wisely focuses on the evolving mother-daughter relationship between the two main characters which in turns is compelling, turbulent and oddly touching in places.

Atmospheric, and will stay logged in your memory long after its conclusion.

Highly recommended.

With thanks to Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Juli Rahel
Jun 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
I went into My Name is Monster blindly, not having read the blurb in a while and therefore only having a very vague awareness of what the book was about. As such, Katie Hale took me on a journey with her characters, letting me slowly discover the world she describes page by page. I think I'm going to have to do this more often because My Name is Monster absolutely captured me. Thanks to Canongate and Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Dystopian f
David Harris
Jun 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
I'm grateful to Canongate for a free advance e-copy of My Name is Monster via NetGalley.

In a ruined world, two hurt women try to find a way to live. The first is called - calls herself - "Monster". We never learn what other names she may have had. Monster was a scientist, working at the seed bank on the Arctic island of Svalbard. After a time of war and plague and the Last Fall, she makes her way south by boat, and reaches the coast of Scotland, which is where the book begins.

Monster starts to w
Molly Walker
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
*I received a copy of this book by Canongate in exchange for an honest review via Netgalley, all thoughts are my own*

I think the surprising thing about this book is about how the plot isn’t as jam packed as you’d expect from a post-apocalyptic novel. Instead it was more about the survival of the main character Mother, so it starts off quite slow. She is walking to her parents house, on the way searching for food and shelter. You get glimpses of the past through her memories, such as how lif
Emma Rowson
Jun 14, 2019 rated it liked it
From the off there is a dizzying sense of unease and unfamiliarity with My Name is Monster. I found myself reading and desperately trying to make this world fit within my own, grasping for something known to me – of course, that is the beauty of dystopian fiction. The taking of what we know and twisting it, makes for a quite frankly terrifying read, and I found myself asking ‘what if’ regularly.
As the recent past unfurls through Monster’s thoughts we learn more about how this world has come to b
Jun 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Sometimes the simplest premise and exquisite execution come together serendipitously and make for a totally absorbing thriller. My Name is Monster is one such powerhouse post-apocalyptic landscape in which humanity is dead. Gone. Extinct. Except for Monster. And Mother. We never quite know how it has come to this although reasons are alluded to throughout we are not given reliable or solid reasoning; I liked these mysterious parts of the book as my imagination ran away with itself and it was rat ...more
Ella (The Story Collector)
The Sickness and the bombs have killed off the last of humanity, leaving only Monster, emerging from the arctic vault that kept her alive. Believing she is now alone in the world, Monster washes up on the coast of Scotland and begins the long journey back to her parent’s house. One day, she finds a girl. Naming the girl after herself and changing her own name to Mother, she tries to teach the girl everything she knows. But young Monster has her own desires that are very different to those of the ...more
Gaby (GNTxREADs)
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
WOW! Now this book really was such a great hidden gem! We begin to learn of the world that 'Monster' now lives in after it seems that the rest of the human race has dies of a sickness. This first part of the book is an insightful, yet lonely experience, as we follow how Monster may be coming close to insanity.

Monster comes across as knowledgeable, experienced, and capable of surviving on her own. Yet the odds feel stacked against her, and it seems that it is only a matter of time..

The short snap
Debbie Littley
Jun 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Told entirely from a first person perspective it follows Monster as she journeys across country to find life, to find somewhere safe, somewhere she can belong in a world that is now devoid of all human life. Or so it seems until she comes across a young girl alone in a deserted city.

As Monster becomes Mother the young girl becomes Monster and the bond between the two begins. Having found a farm the two begin to rebuild a life that is self sufficient, living off the land, what they can grow and
my bookworm life
May 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was very kindly sent a copy of this from the publishers Canongate for reviewing.

I devoured this book in just two sittings, glued to the page and gripped by the story. I found that i got into it straight away, which is always the sign of a winner in my eyes. I just found myself absorbed by the story and it's narrators, i loved how it was split into two sections , both characters having a perspective really added to the story and seeing things through two very different people was so interestin
Miss Walton
May 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
It takes a monster to survive the end of the world. It takes a mother to surmount it. And it takes a meditative mood to appreciate a novel about it. To be more precise, it takes a meditative mood to appreciate this particular novel about the aftermath of the end of the world. ‘Good Omens’, for instance, (another novel about the end of the world and one of my favourites) can be read in any mood. ‘My Name is Monster’, however, is too introspective to be suited to any mood other than contemplative. ...more
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, owned
Lil' spoilers, maybe?


This is a very think-y book and I loved it. For a post-apocalyptic setting, not a lot happened, but there was a lot in it still. The characters (all two of them!) were very tangible and different and both of them were fiercely understandable – but not necessarily relatable – even when they were at odds, even when you were in the other character's perspective. It was about aloneness and not wanting to be alone even if being together is difficult, and about words and mean
Ellis (whatellisreadnext)
Jun 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
'I think about all the people I ever knew. Everyday I remember someone else, as if they're all buried inside of me like books in a library, just waiting for my brain to pick one out. It's shocking how many people you encounter in a lifetime.'
Centred around Monster, who survived the apocalypse nestled in an underground bunker on a glacier, we follow her journey back to her childhood home. Once there, she realises she cant live there without her parents. So sets off to find someplace else to call
Helen Marquis
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Dystopian, feminist, mother and daughter survival. If you liked "Station 11" or "The Road" then you'll like this. Written in the style of Ali Smith, the book is all about creating intimate moments, vast details or moving the story along, using an almost poetical and calming narrative. Unlike the more bombastic and in your face "this is the world ending and this is why it ended" that you'll get in "World War Z"or "I am Legend", we are left uncertain as to how society collapsed. This book is more ...more
Kerry Bossons
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved this book, it has all the feel of John Christopher's Death of the Grass or Wrinkle in the Skin but without the rapeyness. The first part of the book is narrated by Monster a young woman who is better at fixing things than human relationships. The second part is narrated by a girl that Monster adopts after they find each other in an abandoned city.

This is a great addition to apocalyptic fiction and is a more female take on the genre. The book was just the right length and was gripped eno
Jan 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a glorious, powerful and exquisitely written post-apocalyptic story.
The grey atmosphere and walking have hints of Cormac McCarthy's The Road but this is something else. It's a close study of two women in extreme circumstances, pushed to the limits.
The two voices are unique and both of them got deep under my skin.
I know I'm going to be thinking about this one for a long time. I AM MONSTER is beautiful and dark, but ultimately uplifting. I'm in love and I can't believe this is a debut.
Jan 26, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
I was quite intrigued by the description and the cover, of course. As I started reading, I was completely captivated by the writing even though I had a lot of questions to the plot and the main character and I'm afraid some of them were left unanswered. But then the second half of the book became a bit repetitive and even less convincing. Still, very impressive for a debut. Thanks to the publishers for a proof copy.
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