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Monster High #1

Monster High

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From Lisi Harrison, the New York Times bestselling author of The Clique and Alphas, comes a new series with a fresh twist on high school, romance, and the horrors of trying to fit in.

They prefer to call themselves RAD (Regular Attribute Dodgers), but some call them monsters. So far, the "monster" community has kept a low profile in Salem, but this year two new girls enroll at Master High School, and the town will never be the same.

Created just fifteen days ago, Frankie Stein is psyched to trade her father's formaldehyde-smelling basement lab for parties and cheerleading. But with a student body totally freaked out by rumors of monsters who might be stalking the halls, Frankie finds that life in the "normi" world can be rough for a chic freak like her.

She thinks she finds a friend in fellow new student Melody Carver--but can a normi be trusted with her big secret?

255 pages, Hardcover

First published September 1, 2010

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About the author

Lisi Harrison

84 books2,588 followers
Lisi Harrison is the author of the #1 New York Times best-selling series "The Clique", "Alphas", "Monster High," Pretenders," and her first adult novel: "The Dirty Book Club" out 10.10.17. Lisi was born in Toronto, Canada, and lived in NYC for 15 years while she worked at MTV. She now lives in Laguna Beach, CA and is a member or her own Dirty Book Club.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 935 reviews
Profile Image for Montzalee Wittmann.
4,503 reviews2,315 followers
September 3, 2018
Monster High (Monster High #1) by Lisi Harrison is a cute story about a group of teens. Some of these teens are not like the others...lol ! There is a group on real life monsters living in this town but keep their real identity hidden. Well, that's before the Steins let their newly made daughter go to high school.
Profile Image for Briar's Reviews.
1,788 reviews501 followers
March 9, 2023
Monster High by Lisi Harrison is a fun twist on classic monsters but in a more family-friendly, YA format.

Ever since Monster High became the big hit that it has with the kiddos, I've been eying down the "original" source material. This book came onto my radar and I just knew I had to read it. The premise itself of the current shows and movies was interesting - children of the original monsters - so the book also had to be an interesting read too, right? Well, it sure was! Now, I'm no expert on the movies, dolls, tv shows, etc., that came from this other than knowing the bare basics (and watching one or two that popped up on television for something to watch). Is it accurate? No idea. Is it fun? HECK YES.

The take of the monsters hiding in plain sight was fun and intriguing. It made a hint of mystery and suspense appear in this novel when I full out expected the book to just be a literal Monster High without "normis" (you know, us humans) hanging around. Frankistein, aka Frankie, Draculara, and all of the other characters are there, but they can't let the world know they are different (or RADs... Regular Attribute Dodgers - which is an epically fun name I'm going to use daily for myself now LOL).

Melody has me wondering... Is she really a normi? I feel like she isn't. I thought she was a vampire at first, but I just can't place who she might be... yet.

There was a bit of a cliffhanger, which made my grumpy, but I wanted to continue the series regardless. I'll be keeping my eye out for the remaining books in this series and binge my way through them just like I did this one.

Fun, freaky, fantastic!

Five out of five stars.
Profile Image for Drucilla.
2,411 reviews44 followers
December 14, 2011
I decided to read this book because I liked the Monster High animated shorts online. If you decide the same thing, be forewarned that the book is nothing like the shorts. I knew this going in, but I still kept trying to force what I knew about the shorts into this book. Having said that, I really liked this book. It does a great job of standing on its own. I liked going back and forth between Frankie and Melody's p.o.v. I also liked most of the characters. Some were annoying as heck, though. I wished there was more background on the history of the RADs (a name that isn't really believeable by the way): how long they've been around, how they've interacted with humans, etc. Hopefully, there will be more background in the future books. I have to admit I hated the brand dropping that occured throughout the book. It was actually distracting in some parts, but I can't really blame the book. After all, it's based on a line of fashion dolls so, of course, designer brands are going to be important.
Profile Image for Elle.
109 reviews57 followers
January 24, 2023
My favorite book 7 years ago. Re-read it and I still love it.

You could give me a list of all the bad things about this book, and I’d probably agree, but I’d still love it. I’ve read this book more times than I can count, don’t ask me why because I don’t really know. All I know is that I fell in love with this book when I was 10 and since then it has had a special place in my heart.

Yes the characters have no personality and yes the plot is stupid, but this book is my childhood and I’ll forever love it.
Profile Image for Jaye Berry.
1,344 reviews123 followers
October 10, 2012
Hmm a book based on girly monster dolls? Yup this book turned out exactly how I thought it'd be. Extremely shallow but still rather cute.

So this book starts out with Melody Carver and her family moving from California to Salem, Oregon because of her terrible asthma. She had also just gotten a nose job that apparently made her uber pretty, and yet she feels like a fraud.

Switch to Frankie Stein. She is also a new student at Merston High, and only 15 days old. I guess being the granddaughter of Frankenstein has some perks huh? Well except now she has to hide what she is and just fit into high school.

This book was told in dual POVs from Melody and Frankie by the way, which I did enjoy. (Along with that random chapter told from Ghoulia Yelps... Damn I wanna go to NekroCon.) As Melody and Frankie were totally different (human vs monster) the contrast was nice.

I really love the idea of classic monsters children having descendants. And we have them all here! Dracula, Medusa, werewolves, zombies, mummies, Frankenstein, loch ness monster, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and even some invisible guy along with probably more that we didn't get to see yet.

My main issue was how pretty much all of the characters were just so... one-dimensional and shallow. (And sometimes not very bright.)

Take Melody for instance. She had just met the guy Jackson and then he started to make out with someone else publicly for a solid week while Melody obsessed. Then he came back to her and said that he didn't remember any of it. She had no problem with that and then went back to thinking about their "true love" and even the smells of "first love". I don't even... Just no. I just really did not like Melody.

(Plus it seemed like she giggled every other page. Not even kidding!)

And wow if some crazy sounding girl wants you to sign a contract to not mess with her boyfriend before becoming friends, run the other way.

I did love Frankie though. I was totally with her the whole way with stepping outside her bedroom and learning that not everyone will love (but maybe fear) her appearances even though she does. And making friends and fighting for the monsters to not be afraid to out themselves to the humans.

Also another thing, so much name dropping! So much talking about what everyone was wearing. Down to their shoes! How much do I care what every single character is wearing? Yeah. I don't. Cool that everyone is dressing for a runway show though. And the name dropping. Up to and including: Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, Ke$ha, Jay-Z, Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Madonna, Timberland, Pussycat Dolls, Kings of Leon(okay I do love the song they were mentioning though), then onto Gossip Girl, random teen magazines, Dior, Chanel, Gucci, iPhones (why did everyone have an iPhone and assume every else did too?) and I'm pretty sure a ton more. I'm totally cool with random pop-culture references but so many makes my brain hurt.

Obviously the age bracket is younger than me on this book which is why it wasn't my favorite. You'll probably enjoy this if you like cute and fluffy monster reads though.

Now I'm off to watch the mini series that is totally not canon.
Profile Image for Stacy.
222 reviews20 followers
March 2, 2011
The Quick and the Dirty...a new and cutsie take on monsters

Why I was tempted to read this...I thought it sounded good and you gotta love the name Frankie Stein

Cover thoughts...Somewhat plain, but I like it simple like that, eye catching

Romance Meter...There was some, but there wasn't as much as I had hoped for. A lot of one girl liking a guy that likes someone else.

Character and Plot...I think I was expecting something dark and creepy with all the monsters walking around the high school, but the book is not that at all. It is more of a cute story of a girl that doesn't want to conform that must for her and her family's safety and another girl that moves to the town and likes her nerdy neighbor that has a "dark" side she doesn't know how to deal with. The story flowed pretty well, the plot wasn't as intense as I like. I think this book will appeal to readers of the younger YA genre. The book was easy to read and the characters enjoyable but not real deep. Thumbs up to the author for originality tho.

The Ending...Was not surprising and about how I expected it to end.
Profile Image for Saviourofmusic.
22 reviews
February 18, 2013
Awful perfectly describes this story. My best friend loves these books and told me to read them. At first I turned them down, but she finally coaxed me-- I was intrigued. When I got the books, I was excited and started reading right away. When I finished I tried starting the second but gave up. I couldn't do it. First of all, the plot is kinda boring. Just boring. Not much to say for it. But the worst is the characters. Melody's an annoying and naïve idiot. She constantly goes on these useless little rants about how she wishes people would look past her "beauty" and see who she really is inside. Um, conceited much? She falls for the first guy she sees and when he kisses Cleo she still loves him. I guess that's normal. But then he gives her this ridiculous story about him having blackouts and not remembering it and like the stupid little girl she is, Melody just nods and goes with it. Frankie wasn't actually that bad. I liked her "I'm okay with who I am" personality. But I found her a little boring and too obsessed with anything mainstream. These two aspects didn't mix well. The popular crowd, Cleo, Claudine (Clawdine), Lala (Draculaura), and Blue (Lagoona Blue) were all pretty cool actually. But I wish they would have been less fashion, makeup, designer brand obsessed. That was irritating. This book felt like a walking advertisement for all the stuff the girls were using. Becca was a really unrealistic character. She made her friends sign contracts to hang out with her and be in her "book" that Haley was writing. And Haley didn't really like writing the story but was in Becca's "contract" so she had to stay. That. Would. Never. Happen. It wasn't a legit contract! But when Becca (spoiler, but it was so cliché it would be easily suspected) turned on Melody I almost cheered. That's how horrible Melody is. Overall I'd say this book sucked. It was supposed to be so dramatic and doesn't end at this book; it continues into the next. But honestly before you begin reading the story just put it down. It's not worth it.
Profile Image for Traci.
547 reviews40 followers
September 16, 2013
This is a cute book and it made me laugh quite a few times, and despite the few flaws that I found (more on that in a minute) it definitely warrants more than a 3-star rating. It's getting a 3-star rating because I listened to an audiobook version where large chunks of the book are just... gone. There were definite sync issues throughout, where I'd magically skip back several chapters mid-sentence, but two instances where the chapters were missing altogether. This was during the important parts (the end included). For that reason I'm a little frustrated, and even though I know logically that this isn't the poor book's fault, I don't like not knowing 1) the moment the fearsome five (I think there are five) decide to solve the problem and 2) the actual RESOLUTION of the problem.

Anyway, on to the review.

So Monster High is of course based on the dolls released by Mattel, a web-series that can be found on YouTube, a couple of movies and apparently a short book series. If you have prior knowledge of the other aspects of this...fandom? then the shock of who the monsters are is kind of lost on you, but it's still a cute book regardless. It's also pretty much a loose adaptation, which stands well on its own and you don't have to watch the webisodes or anything to enjoy this. (In fact, you probably shouldn't.)

Frankie Stein, at fifteen days old, learns a rather harsh lesson about being different and then is sent to school, where she has to cover up her neck seams and her green skin and pretend to be normal. Apparently normies (non-monsters) are deathly afraid of monsters to the point where they have drills on how to scare them off. All the monsters call themselves RADs. And then there's a parallel story of a normie who goes to school with all the monsters, too. I wish I could go into further detail but, you know, missing key elements of the story and all.

Unfortunately this book is going to be totally irrelevant in a few years. The pop culture references were cute and they fit... now... but there was also a huge huge huge amount of name dropping and subtle brand advertisements and nobody is going to have a clue about half the references in a few years.

I liked Frankie as a narrator, but was less enthusiastic about Melody. I'm pretty sure it's set up that she'll be a RAD too in the later books, but for now I just found her less interesting. I also liked the message that the book seemed to be presenting about being the change and all that, but (I have to say it) it would have been a lot nicer to actually get to hear the execution of that plan and the results of that plan, too.
Profile Image for Lily May Mellark ❀.
280 reviews61 followers
October 11, 2022
Monster High was something I loved when I was younger; particularly the movies (13 wishes especially) and my favourite Monster High character was Frankie. Thus, when I recently found out it was a book series first, and that the first one was centred on Frankie, I was so excited to read it. Did I expect it to be good? Not really. But this took the cake.

this review is going to be as confusing as this book was


Frankie Stein: They ruined her. What the hell?!?! She was so dull and stupid and weird and obsessed with fashion and nothing else, and even though half the book was from her POV it felt like she was hardly in the story!

"Hey, beautiful bride," a boy whispered in her ear.


He turned her to face him. "Um, it's Brett, actually. But I prefer Frankendaddy."


... why is Frankie going for this guy?????? is it because... he reminds her of her father??? 😳😳😳
Also, her constant use of the word "voltage" for everything got hella annoying. She was designed to be this super smart beautiful teenage girl and THAT'S all she could come up with to say?

Melody Carver: Melody isn't in the movies or tv shorts so I wasn't expecting her but she was the other half of the POVs in the book! Melody was kind of stupid, throwing herself towards this guy Jackson but every time he treated her badly she got even more flustered for him... it was so annoying. also what the hell was this -- She had completely forgotten she was wearing Candace's minidress. Suddenly, she felt very self-conscious. Not because her legs were exposed, but because her experimentation with sexiness was. WHAT?!?!

Draculaura, Clawdeen, Lagoona Blue: They were all pretty much interchangeable in the story and were there for about 7 seconds. very disappointing.

Deuce: Deuce got RUINED.

Cleo: bro wtf was Cleo doing? This book was so stupid. Let me get a quote up here:

"You take something of mine? Then I'll take something of yours!" Cleo said.

"I didn't take anything of yours," Melody insisted. But it was too late.

Cleo swiped her glossy lips with more gloss, rocked on the toes of her wedges, and then reached for Jackson and pulled him close. Suddenly, she was kissing him.

"Oh my god!" Melody laughed, unable to process the audacity. She turned to Claudine [how the 'normies' spell Clawdeen] in desperation. "What is she doing?"

Claudine ignored her. "Jackson!" Melody screeched.

What the actual hell. And then later it transpires that Draculaura likes Jackson so Cleo kissed him before Melody could 'make a move' on him to make sure he wouldn't be taken. SORRY?!?!

And guess what? After Cleo reveals this, this is how Frankie reacts. Frankie eyed Cleo with newfound respect. Beautiful, loyal, and selfless...


Jackson: bro wtf was going on it wasn't just the fact that he kept blacking out and stuff it was his whole character while he was Jekyll and Hyde. this man really had no redeeming qualities.

Jackson removed his glasses. His forehead was coated in sweat. "Is someone a little jealous?" he snicked.

"What?" Melody leaned against a blue chair.

Jackson snapped his fingers to the Ke$ha track that had started playing, and began dancing. "I'm just saying," he crossed one leg over the other and spun like he was onstage at the Soul Train Awards. "You don't look good in greeeen."


It got worse when Jackson kept referring to Frankie as "firecracker" and then BOTH MELODY AND FRANKIE WERE IN LOVE WITH HIM??? AFTER FRANKIE SPENT HALF THE BOOK CHASING THE DISGUSTING BRETT?

Brett: Such a pointless character and a dickwad. Refers to himself as 'Frankendaddy'. That's all you need to know.

Bekka: Brett's girlfriend who kept making Melody sign documents??? The ballpoint Melody would use, should she choose to accept the offer. Melody fake-read the document to give the appearance that she wasn't the kind of chump who signs things without reading them, even though she was. WHY DO THEY HAVE TO SIGN A CONTRACT TO BE FRIENDS??? NO WONDER PPL STAY AWAY FROM U, BEKKA.

Billy: the man had 2 lines and still stole the show


From the quotes I've included above, you can probably conclude that the writing was less than ideal. Stunned by how much it reminded me of Pretty Little Liars. Brands and names were name-dropped on almost every line -- "miu miu shoes", "Lady Gaga" -- Frankie has an obsession with Lady Gaga because the poor woman was mentioned about once a chapter; all these other random "pop-culture" references that just made the book sound dated.

My favourite moment was when Deuce and Cleo were in an argument and this ensued (though this has nothing to do with the writing):

Beyoncé's song 'Single Ladies (Put A Ring on It)' began playing inside the gym. "They're playing my song!" Cleo announced. She held out her hands, and the girls latched on.

"Cleo, you're not single!" Deuce wedged his body between her and the door. "This whole Melody thing is a misunderstanding. I swear. I was just going to call you."

"If you liked it, then you should have put a ring on it," Cleo teased.

"Where?" Deuce lifted her bejewelled hand. "There's no room. The lot's full."



Plot? What plot? RANDOM THINGS HAPPENED and it was SURREAL. Basically Frankie is adjusting to life as a monster and questioning things pointlessly and nothing happened on her side, whereas Melody was pursuing Jackson and making weird friends and then she realised Jackson was actually Jekyll/Hyde and Jekyll was in love with her and Hyde was in love with Frankie -- though Hyde and Frankie spent about 2 minutes together.

Anyway in the last like 10% of the book Frankie reveals she is a monster and people freak out. Then a video of Jackson being a monster is on Melody's phone and Bekka finds it, and decides that despite the friendship contract (the horror! and the question of the friendship contract is again raised, as it seems nobody is going to follow it anyway) she is going to give Melody an ultimatum: basically, Melody needs to lead them to the monster (Frankie) who hurt Brett. Melody uses Jackson to find Frankie and right at the end of the book we hit the climax: Frankie and Melody must work together to make sure Bekka doesn't share the video!!!

Not that anyone reading the book cares at all, of course.

My main question was why the author spent 90% of the book with this build-up then ended it on the climax. I get that she wanted a cliffhanger but she should have had the full Freytag's Pyramid and introduced a second inciting incident as a cliffhanger right at the end instead of whatever this was.

Again, maybe I'm thinking about this too much.


A big thing with Monster High is the couples, so I thought there might be some interesting dynamics here... but they all sucked.


Stick to the show, guys. This book is atrocious.


Literally have records of almost a quote a page because this story was so ridiculous.

"We moved here because of my asthma," Melody announced.

"Real sexy, Mel." Candace sighed, giving up.

"Well, it's true."

Jackson's tight features unwound into a comfortable smile. It was as if Melody's admission had asked his confidence to dance. And it had said yes."


Tired, hungry and disappointed, Melody felt like a refugee, only slightly more fashion forward, as she ambled along with the masses in search of food.

bro what... why is she comparing herself to a refugee I WANT TO KILL HER

With one hand in his pocket and the other clutching a tiny flip-top pad (because cool guys don't take a lot of notes), he strutted over to Frankie.

cool guys watch monster high movies instead of reading this god-awful book
Profile Image for Yelania Nightwalker.
1,058 reviews163 followers
January 30, 2011
Primero quiero decir que la edición del libro es muy bonita. Cada capítulo nos muestra un figurita que representa a Frankie o a Melody, de ese modo podemos saber sobre quién tratará el capítulo en cuestión.

La historia está enfocada en Frankie, bisnieta de Frankenstein ni más ni menos (esta chica sí que tiene buen linaje), y en Melody, la “normi”. Es decir, todos los humanos somos normis y Mel lo es también. Ella viene desde Beverly Hills!! Una chica un tanto insegura por su aspecto anterior que la hacía “X” y el magnífico nuevo aspecto que su padre, un excelente cirujano plástico, le hizo. No crean que Mel está súper-mega-ultra-feliz por ello, pero el por qué accedió a ese makeover, tendrán que averiguarlo ustedes.

Ahora, mi queridísima Frankie, muy segura de sí misma; es verde, pero para ella es genial por que “lo verde está de moda”. Ella quiere cambiar el mundo, y hacer que los RAD -“Regular attribute Dodgers” o lo mismo que “fugitivos de los atributos normales”-, se integren al mundo de los normis sin que éstos les teman. Que puedan salir al mundo real con sus verdaderas vestimentas sin causar miedo y resultar heridos ¿Lo logrará?

A simple vista parece una reinvención de las viejas historias, un rescate de los “monstruos” que han poblado muchas de nuestras lecturas –si es que alguien ha leído Frankestein o Dr Jeckyll y Mr Hyde-, pero, si algo me gustó del libro fue el mensaje que encierra la búsqueda de Frankie por la aceptación de los que son diferentes a los “individuos con atributos físicos comunes y corrientes.” Y al final, los problemas que atraviesan estos personajes no son tan distintos de los adolescentes.

Me encantó MONSTER HIGH por que es divertidísima. Tiene un ritmo genial, empiezas a leer y no quieres detenerte por ningún motivo. ¿Y ahora qué? Te preguntas, por que todos los personajes son impredecibles, sí, sí, sí pero son adolescentes!!

La historia tiene su dosis justa de amor, de humor, una montaña rusa de emociones y hormonas desequilibradas (jejeje) tal como en la vida real en esa etapa de la adolescencia o no? Hay amistades buenas, amistades que son como el lobo en piel de oveja, un poco de presión social y… los dejaré con la duda :P

Frankie me gustó, es muy soñadora y muy cool –hasta sus fashionratas me gustaron-, sin duda sería mi amiga si yo viviera en ese mundo, lo verde me va bien, además. Pero Melody es MI personaje favorito y espero que en el siguiente libro haya más de ella, es decir, sé que habrá más de ella, pero quiero “algo” que no les puedo decir por que entonces se arruina todo, así que vayan y léanlo J y después me dicen si no esperan lo mismo ustedes.

Ahora, el final es un cliffhanger así que no le pidan peras al olmo, no se tiren de los pelos (Ok. Yo lo hice) por que NO van a descubrir nada. Peroooo, no pueden dejar de leerlo, no pasen de él, se los aseguro no se arrepentirán. Monster High es en pocas palabras ELECTRIZANTE!!!
Profile Image for Kai (CuriousCompass).
457 reviews19 followers
May 18, 2021
Cute. That's about it. A lot you could do with monsters and the likes, but the premise is largely wasted on a typical cutesy high school contemporary.

ETA: THAT SAID I often find myself thinking of revisiting/rereading this and one standout scene is Frankie being heartbroken when two "normal" girls react poorly to her and run away. Growing up a huge outcast...the desire and pain for her to be accepted and belong somewhere truly resonated.
Profile Image for Dott.
10 reviews3 followers
September 2, 2019
Links to my other Monster High by Lisi Harrison reviews: [2] [3] [4]

This series is so hard for me to review. I'm not even sure where to start. It's baffling, because Lisi Harrison is not a bad writer. I know she isn't. I've read a fair bit of her other work, and I enjoyed it. She just somehow manages to take Monster High, something that's really close to my heart, and completely bastardize it in four books.

The first installment is my second favorite out of the four; it's a nice little standalone story, and if this were the only book in this series, I'd have much less complicated feelings about this universe as a whole.

I like the concept. I like the idea of the monsters hiding among people and having an underground (both literally and figuratively) community. The little bits of worldbuilding that Harrison does in this series are the best parts: there's one part in this one where Frankie recalls a story about her grandparents' wedding, and it's adorable. Another favorite scene of mine is when Frankie gets to attend a secret RAD meeting for the first time, and away from human eyes, everyone is able to be themselves, fangs and fur and all. Stuff like that helps to flesh out RAD culture and dynamics. This setup could have been explored beautifully (spoiler alert: it isn't) and I would have found that alone worth the price of admission.

Note: from here on out, I'll be referring to monsters as "RADs", or Regular Attribute Dodgers, since that's what they're called in the book. Know that I hate this and think it's stupid.

As far as protagonists go, Frankie Stein is a perfect one. She's just weeks old, and acts as a lens for the reader to learn more about the RAD world. Add that to her cheerful and kind personality, and you've got one of my favorite protags in anything I've ever watched/read (note that I'm including her cartoon self in this, too).

In the movies and webisodes, Frankie's one of my favorite characters, and she's still one of my favorites in the books, but Harrison writes her so that she's absolutely miserable all the time. Book Frankie is constantly at odds with her awful parents, the humans in town, the other RADs, her love interests -- you name it, it's trying to bring Frankie down. And yeah, as a leading character, something has to oppose her, but it's just depressing to watch literally everyone around her make her cry and feel hopeless. Frankie's too much of an angel for that to be fun to read.

The other protagonist is Melody Carver. I hate Melody Carver. She's the master of her own misery, and equates her having an """ugly""" hooked nose at one point in her life to the systemic oppression that RADs face. Her relationship with Jackson is infuriating. The way she sees herself as "not like the other girls" is obnoxious and tired. All of her mistakes are handwaved away. I can't find a single thing to like about her, and that's a problem when she's one of the two leads.

Melody's parents conducted plastic surgery on her nose when she was young, which is obviously a heinous thing to do to a child. I'd be more sympathetic to her about this situation if she didn't use this to compare herself to a marginalized group that exists in this universe, though, especially since she doesn't even experience the ramifications of being """ugly""" anymore. God, I hate the implications of Melody's old nose being described as something so hideous that it's equatable to fictional monsters. Some good ol family-friendly racism right there.

I maintain the view that Melody's sister, Candace, would have been a much better co-protag to Frankie. She's materialistic, shallow, and far too focused on appearances, but we see in later books that she's got a good heart. Maybe I'll touch more on this in my reviews of the other books, but for now I'll leave it at that. #stancandacecarver

As far as the other characters go, the original Monster High characters are watered-down husks of their animated selves, and the new human characters introduced by Harrison are all incredibly annoying (save for, as previously mentioned, Candace). Cleo de Nile and Bekka Madden are the worst offenders here.

Bekka is a shrill, controlling, human girl who befriends Melody early on. She's the closest thing the series has to an antagonist (if you don't count Cleo), and she's beyond annoyed. Normally, I say stan shrill, controlling women, since they're often so unfairly hated, but I can't say that for Bekka. I can't stand her.

In the movies and webisodes, Cleo's a well-developed character raised by an abusive family who learns how to love through the love of her friends. She's got the best character arc in the entire franchise, and she stays true to herself (spoiled and kinda rude) while still being an ultimately good person who is loyal to the ones she loves. Harrison's characterization of Cleo is an insult to everything I've just built up. If she only had Animated Cleo's bad/worse qualities, that would be one thing, but Book Cleo is straight-up cruel. She shows affection through manipulation, and throughout this series, she employs textbook abuse tactics on her boyfriend Deuce Gorgon (which is frustrating to read as someone who loves their healthy relationship in the animated stuff). The irony in this is that I think I'd enjoy and appreciate Book Cleo if she were a different character, if she were someone new -- if she wasn't supposed to be Cleo de Nile.

The cherry on top is that Cleo's the only one that Harrison specifies to be a person of color, and as a not-so-fun bonus, the author uses only different types of coffee to describe the shade of Cleo's skin.

Speaking of characters of color, I fully believe that Clawdeen Wolf is whitewashed in these books. She's black in the animated series, and even a person who's only familiar with Monster High in passing would know this. However, I think Lisi Harrison either somehow doesn't know this, or she just chooses to completely ignore it. Wanna know why I think that? Let's refer back to how Harrison describes Cleo's skin: cappuccino, coffee, etc. etc. However, there's not a single reference to Clawdeen's skin in the entire series. If she were black in the books, I 100% think she would have had her skin tone described in the same, racist way: using descriptors like "chocolate" or something. Harrison isn't a bad writer, I stand by this, but going off of Monster High and The Clique, there's definitely an issue with how she writes characters of color, and we can assume any character who doesn't get this treatment is white by default. The default is white (Clawdeen), and anyone who isn't white is exotic (Cleo). It's a frustrating reality, but I definitely think that's the case here.

Oh, and speaking of stuff Lisi Harrison changes, can I mention how much I hate Jackson and DJ/Holt's transformation being triggered by heat here? What was wrong with music? Why is Holt's name DJ now? Is Holt too on-the-nose for her?

Anyway, sidebar soapbox over.

There's not much of a plot to this first book, just various hijinks. And I enjoyed that enough on Frankie's end. It's not a bad book by any means, but if I didn't have the rest of the Monster High franchise to compare it to, each of these books would probably get another additional star from me. They'd be much better under a different name, one that's unique to this series and that hasn't been used for a doll line, that doesn't already have an established canon. I didn't want to spend too much time comparing these books to the animated series, but it's impossible not to do it at least a little bit. There's too many comparisons to be made.

Three more books to go.
Profile Image for Big Rens.
21 reviews
May 4, 2022
How can I even begin to explain this absolute SHITSHOW of a book? First off, the only good characters are Billy and Candace, both of which rarely mentioned or brought up. AND BILLY IS A SIMP. I felt so bad for him , ong. Candace is a girlboss tho.

Frankie and Melody were both pickme BRATS and I had to force myself to read about them. Cleo was the only sane character tbh, but I felt my iq drop with every word I read. Everyone is so petty and dumb that it makes me physically ill. Unfortunately, the plot was solid and even interesting. I hate Lisi Harrison with my entire body and soul, so much that I want to be reincarnated to be put into her book so that I can strangle Melody and tell her to stop being such a cry baby. I would then tear Frankie Stein apart bolt by bolt until she is just a head, and force her to keep Lady Gaga's name out of her FUCKING mouth and that she's not the revolutionary activist she think's she is.

Billy and Candace are the only things keeping this book together. Slay.
December 18, 2013
In the book Monster high by Lisa Harrison, this story is about all the descendants of famous monsters such as Frankenstein, Dracula, The werewolf, etc. Mainly its about a monster named Frankie stein and she's only 15 days old since her parents brought her to life 15 days ago. Her parents dont like the fact that she's into things that the normies like a.k.a humans. Her parents reassure to her that not very many people treat monsters like them very kindly because of their skin and the way they look.There's also a family that has to move to the same community as frankie because of their youngest daughter melody who has really bad asthma.Hoping the air will be better for her,her parents decide to move there since nose surgeries dont really work.
Before going to highschool Frankie is being homeschooled. She doesn't really like it since she wants to go out into the world.But her parents dont allow it ever since the incident that happend in the 20th century when horror movies became famous. The movie was about Frnakie's parents showing that they may be vile and dangerous when really they just want to be in a place that will accept them.
Frankies parents have a talk to her about the normies and how they treat them, frankie is forced to dress like her parents in a body suit wearing fierce and flawless stage make up. Well unfortunetly frankie dislikes the idea of not being able to be herself and tells her parents that she isnt going to wear it. While frankies parents are gone , frankie looks through her magazines and searches through her closet for fashionable clothes to wear.
Once Frankies parents are told that they have to go back to their school and teach this causes them to make frankie go to highschool.The highschool frankie ends up going to is of course called Monster high , a school filled with all kinds of monsters like frankie who are free to be proud of who they are. Which comes to the conclusion of her meeting Clawd and clawdeen wolf (son and daughter of the werewolf), Draculaura fangs(daughter of dracula), Lagoona blue (daughter of the sea monster), Cleo de nile (daughter of the mummy), Deuce Gordon(son of medusa), Ghoulia yelps (daughter of the zombies), and plenty more throughout the story.
I think the author did handle the situations well in this book. My thoughts on the moral to the story were to be yourself no matter what you look like , and that people shouldn't judge a book by it's cover.When I first read the book I thought it was pretty good , its a very interesting and entertaining book loved it. I do recommend this book for middle school, and high school levels.
Profile Image for Lisa.
233 reviews
July 23, 2012

Monster High, just proves that not all books with monsters or creatures, you would "think" don't really exist, have to be scary, or horror books.

From the cute diamond skull with the big pink bow, to the leather background, with pink stitching, this cover just screams cute.

I've seen the other two Monster High books, that are so far out, and I think this cover would have to be my favorite...I think it's because of all of the pink(:

Story Line:

I've recently joined together with Belinda over at burnbright.com.au, to create a book club. Every month, we decide on a book we want to read, and discuss it at the end of that month. We let the readers know what books we plan on reading, months prior; giving everyone, enough time to go out, get a copy, and still have time to finish it.

We decided on a few books including Monster High #3, Angel Arias, Matched, and Elixir. I've never read any of the Monster High books, so to review the third book, I would have to scramble to even get my hands on and finish reading the first two!

Have you ever gotten that feeling, where you think someone is watching you? Have you ever gotten that feeling with books? I do, ALL the time. I feel like they follow me everywhere I go, Barnes and Nobles, grocery shopping, at school, and sometimes even at home, if my mom or brother might already be reading them!

This is how I felt about Monster High, everywhere I turned I would see it! Until it finally cornered me in Burn Bright Book Club(:

Frankie Stein and Melody Carver are the two main characters, two total opposites, and each with their own personnel problem. While Frankie Stein is a monster, and isn't allowed to do some of the things normal teenagers do, Melody has serious asthma, and worries about her looks, after her surgery.

It was amazing how much Frankie grew, from being home schooled and only knowing her parents (who created her) to going to high school, making tons of friends, and embracing who she really is, and that its okay to be what she is.

But on the other hand Melody, grew and became more comfortable with herself too. From claiming she's the ugly duckling in the family, and being shy of her new look after her surgery, she learns to relax a little and even starts liking a special boy.

I had a great time reading Monster High, Lisi Harrison has a great writing style, that leaves you wanting more, and really keeps you interested! I can't wait to start reading the rest of the series, and see how Frankie and Melody continue to grow(:
Profile Image for Jacqueline.
210 reviews5 followers
July 28, 2014
Pues...bien. Si no mal recuerdo este libro estaba basado en una caricatura, o la caricatura en los libros. Sea como sea leí el libro primero, y después vi el primer capitulo de la caricatura. NADA QUE VER. La caricatura y todas esas muñecas que giran en torno al libro son meras superficialidades, el libro es completamente diferente. Vemos a una Frankie que no termina de adaptarse al mundo de los "Normis" (Y de verdad odio ese nombrecito que nos dieron a las personas comunes ¬¬) Y bueno, te sientes muy identificada con ella, porque ¿Quien alguna vez no se ha sentido fuera de lugar? Y Melody tambien es una chica adorable, a pesar de sale muy poco en el libro. Y luego esta Jackson, ¡Vaya sorpresa que te llevas con este chico! Si la trama no es muy de su agrado, lo que les encantara es la forma de escribir de Lisi. Dejando a un lado la tonta y superficial caricatura, y toda la mercancía, definitivamente Monster High vale la pena, al menos para mi.
Profile Image for Tori.
4 reviews
March 13, 2013
Lisi Harrison's Monster High is a great fiction read. I would recommend it to teenage readers. However, if you are into teenage fiction, by all means, read it! This book is about a young woman named Melody who moved from her fancy life in California. You can say she was living the "90210" lifestyle. However, despite her rich living, she wasn't the most popular person in her school...nor the prettiest. But, once she moves to Salem, Oregon she meets a few girls who hide a secret bigger than ever. Frankie is one of the girls who holds a very prominent part in the book. Throughout the book, you explore Melody and Frankie's life. Both of their lives share similar occurrences which causes their lives to intertwine. Overall, this book is strongly recommended! It's a must read! All in all, this book deserves five stars in my opinion!
Profile Image for Suzume K.S..
56 reviews5 followers
September 23, 2022
No, no era fan de la serie de Monster High, realmente no vi muchos capítulos aunque sí sabía que era buena. Tampoco tuve las muñecas, de hecho, y en su momento no me llamaban lo suficiente la atención como para pedírselas a mis padres. Cuando supe de los libros no me interesaron en lo más mínimo. En resumen, no le hice mucho caso a nada relacionado a Monster High.

Entonces, ¿por qué ahora sí? Curiosidad, supongo. Siendo honesta, ya me empieza a gustar la estética, el diseño de los personajes más que nada, me da intriga saber de su historia. Meses atrás vi que vendían este libro, lamentablemente no lo pude comprar pero decidí que lo metería a mi lista por leer y, bueno, henos aquí.

Como dije, no vi mucho de la serie, apenas hace unos días vi Monster High Buu York, pero sí estoy consciente de que esta es una historia distinta. Acá las familias de monstruos se esconden en un pueblito de Salem, donde conviven con humanos, temiendo ser descubiertos por estos y que los vuelvan a perseguir. Están condenados a vivir fingiendo ser algo que no son. Entre estas familias se encuentran los Stein, los padres de Frankie. Ella tiene unos quince días de creada al inicio de la historia y está más que orgullosa de quien es, no está dispuesta a ocultarse como los demás. Por otro lado tenemos a Melody, una chica que se siente acomplejada porque su padre insistió en operar su nariz y ahora la gente la trata distinto solo por su nueva apariencia. Su familia decide mudarse a este pueblito por los problemas respiratorios de Melody, según nos cuentan al inicio, y termina entrando a la misma escuela que Frankie, Merston High, donde no todos son lo que parecen.

Tenemos la historia de Melody, quien pasa por su primer amor y finalmente consigue hacer un buen grupo de amigas, aunque claro, como todo, se encuentra con un montón de obstáculos en su camino a la felicidad. Y mientras tanto está Frankie, cuya meta es que los monstruos entiendan que los humanos están listos para aceptarlos en la sociedad y que estos vean que los monstruos son iguales a ellos. Suena fácil, conseguirlo es lo que está difícil.

Mi mayor conflicto con este libro son las referencias a la cultura pop; no hubo ni un solo capítulo donde no se mencionara una marca, un actor, un artista, una canción, algo por el estilo. Lo considero completamente innecesario, aparte esto entorpece la fluidez de la narración. Las personas no estamos en nuestro día a día diciendo cosas como «Acá tomando un café de Starbucks usando mi abrigo Gucci mientras escucho a Justin Bieber en mi iPod», al menos no he escuchado a nadie hablar así. Hace que sienta que estoy viendo un comercial de trescientas páginas. En especial los primeros capítulos de Frankie estuvieron llenos de esto, por poco desechaba la idea de continuar con la lectura.

Aparte de eso, los primeros capítulos resultan pesados, aburridos a más no poder. Las cosas se ponen interesantes cuando las protagonistas empiezan sus clases en Merston High, pero antes de eso es casi soporífero. Una de las cosas más importantes al escribir un libro es hacer que los primeros capítulos enganchen al lector, así te aseguras de que no tire el libro y continúe con la lectura. Si no fuera porque tenía ganas de ver al resto del elenco principal de la serie (Cleo, Draculaura, Clawdeen, Lagoona y así) creo que no lo habría terminado tan rápido, más bien estaría igual que con Hush, Hush, al cual no quiero ni ver justo ahora; prefiero continuar con mi relectura de Las ventajas de ser invisible antes de seguir con ella.

Dejando lo malo de lado, la historia sí engancha con el tiempo. Sus capítulos son más o menos cortos, hace que, si ignoras toda la propaganda, la lectura sea más rápida. Con todo y que Frankie puede ser demasiado terca y tengas ganas de pedirle no muy amablemente que piense bien las cosas por un momento, sus capítulos son los más interesantes. Los de Melody son el típico drama romántico adolescente con una muy pequeña pizca de sobrenatural que explota más hacia el final, pero eso no los hace peores. Me gusta esto de tener capítulos con dos puntos de vista distintos, tienes a Frankie en un capítulo y a Melody en el siguiente, para luego volver con Frankie. Así hasta el final. El único contra es que hay momentos donde quieres continuar la trama de un protagonista y no tienes ganas de ver la del otro.

Diré que fue una grata sorpresa que al final me terminara gustando este libro. No estuvo mal, quitando lo ya mencionado. Nos dejan en un cliffhanger perfecto para pasar al siguiente libro, el cual sí planeo leer pronto, pero no todavía. No fue como en el caso de Sueña, aquí sí sentí que leí una historia hecha y derecha, no un simple preámbulo. Claro, aún me falta leer más para conocer el final de todo lo que me muestran acá, pero ¿cómo decirlo sin dar más vueltas? No se sintió tanto como una pérdida de tiempo, ¿saben?

En fin, demasiado parloteo. ¿Lo recomiendo? Quisiera hacerlo, pues fue un libro entretenido, sin embargo debo advertir que era en serio lo que dije sobre el inicio aburrido y el montón de publicidad. Si alguien cree poder leer más allá de todo lo malo, pues lo recomiendo. Si empieza el libro y después de los primeros capítulos de verdad cree que no podrá aguantar más, simplemente desista de seguir leyendo.
Profile Image for Dorian Jandreau.
Author 13 books62 followers
August 1, 2017
I gave 4 stars because of common teens' love story.
First I got interested in these dolls. Now I cannot stop buying new ones. Next, I watched all cartoons, and now decided to read books.
So, I noticed that people who read these books wrote that they are full of sexual content. Well, yes, but not that much. Actually this serie is marked as YOUNG ADULTS FICTION, so I don't understand why moms read these books to little girls... It is obviously for teens and young adults, about boys, dating, love and school life.
Well, since I just wanted to read some easy book, I was contented. I liked the idea of book, romance and just easy reading.
Profile Image for Mephia.
10 reviews71 followers
August 22, 2013
ODIO, odio este libro.

No se que le vi cuando lo compre.. me arrepiento de haberlo hecho y de haberlo leído. Creo que lo deje por las primeras paginas y después se lo regale a mi hermanastra de 10 años.
Profile Image for Karsyn .
2,327 reviews36 followers
November 15, 2018
Fun and cute. A little too girlie for me in the start, with all the name dropping and product placements and such. Eye rolling for a lot of it, but once it got into the actual story, I did enjoy it more. Will read more.
Profile Image for Cassidy.
89 reviews20 followers
August 6, 2017
For a book whose tagline reads "fitting in is out," the characters sure are shallow. This is actually a reread for me that I wasn't really planning on doing right now. I originally read the Monster High series when it was first released, despite the fact that I never watched any of the shows or owned any of the dolls. Since Goodreads says the last book in the series was released in 2012, that means these books have been sitting on my shelf for five years without being touched. I figured that meant it was tie to reread them, and since my niece loves being helpful I let her pick out my next book series to read. I shouldn't have had any doubt that she would pick Monster High. Moving onto my thoughts on this book- it was okay, but definitely not intended for my age. I realized that I remembered a lot of the details wrong while reading this book for the second time I'm not sure if that means the series wasn't memorable to me or if it's just really been that long since I've read it. I also didn't notice when I was younger how completely shallow this book is, despite its main message supposedly being about love, tolerance, and acceptance of everyone no matter how they look. I'll get into more depth of my thoughts, but if you don't want to be spoiled for the book and you haven't read it yet, just know that overall I think this book has its cute and quirky moments, but it doesn't really stick out as a fantastic read in any way.
Profile Image for _och_man_.
160 reviews3 followers
June 26, 2022
Potrzebowałam lektury kipiącej znanymi markami i nastoletnimi romansami, po prostu :x Naprawdę wartościowy przekaz miesza się tu często z mniej lub bardziej żenującymi wstawkami, jednak jestem przekonana, że jeszcze kilkanaście lat temu uważałam je za szczyt dobrego humoru.
Sentyment nakazuje mi zostawić ten tytuł bez konkretnej oceny; wolałabym nie tracić dobrych wspomnień.
Profile Image for Amber.
2,283 reviews325 followers
March 28, 2017
This book was a "I have remotely enjoyed watching the movies based on this and am in need of a cleanse" kind of book. I enjoyed the character Melody, who isn't in the movies at all, but she also was my least favorite character which is strange.
Profile Image for Turnipboys.
78 reviews
August 22, 2022
This book is really silly, both in concept and writing style. It absolutely screams early 2010s so of course, when I first read it at 10 years old, I LOVED it. Cool but weird older monster girls getting into drama and making social changes? It was practically made for me.

Reading this as an adult, lots of things are different. For one, I realize just how immature all of the characters are. They're less brave and cool, more stubborn and toxic. I remember that the later books have a lot more character development, so this first one is really more to set up the world and explain how everything happens. Monster High takes place in an alternate universe where monsters (or RADs, the less offensive term) are real and live among humans. However, in the 1920s, most RADs moved to Salem, OR for safety and community after a series of anti-monster mobs.

The world development is honestly pretty fun to me and I really like the idea, even if it's kind of silly to imagine in a practical way. The characters are also pretty cool and as a fan of the TV show, I imagine their cartoon versions.

My biggest gripe is how superficial the book feels and how all of the characters are honestly really toxic, mean people. They're constantly doing things that might read as romantic or funny to a 10-year-old, but to a 20-year-old, I find it concerning. My nostalgia helped me finish this book but if I wasn't already familiar with the series I probably wouldn't like it as much.
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