Book Review: “A Monster Calls”

“A Monster Calls” by Patrick Ness

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy

Source: The Library

Summary from Goodreads:

This is an extraordinarily moving novel about coming to terms with loss. The monster showed up just 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 it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.
It wants the truth.


I’ll be honest. I’m a bit of a Patrick Ness fangirl. I adored The Chaos Walking Trilogy so I went into this book knowing that I’d most likely love it. Like his other books, I can’t competently describe how good the book was. You just need to read it for yourself. Here’s my attempt at a review.

While it’s fun to get lost in a world that’s very different than your own, it’s always worthwhile to get lost in a similar world to your own. Many people have suffered loss in his or her lifetime. More often than not, it’s long, drawn out and emotionally draining so Conor and his life are very easy to relate to. With recent circumstances in my life, I was put into a similar circumstance so I completely understood Conor’s anger, pain, and profound grief. Perhaps that’s why I enjoyed this book so much.

Like the Chaos Walking Trilogy, Ness is able to blur the lines of good and bad. When reading about the monster’s stories, you think you know who’s the good guy and who’s the bad guy but like most things in life it’s more complicated than that. Is the “right” thing always the right thing to do? Are “bad” decisions sometimes the only way out of a bad circumstance?

Spoilery Conor’s truth was hauntingly beautiful because this truth is hard to admit. It is hard to admit that you wish death would come. It’s a terrible thing to say out loud but at least death would mean suffering for everyone is over finally. End of spoilers

The illustrations are absolutely beautiful. Skip over the audiobook and ebook. Make sure you pick up the physical book.

The bottom line? If you’re okay with having a book make you weep, pick this up ASAP. It’s a beautiful book. Also make sure you have loved ones close when you finish the book. You’re going to need a big hug when you’re done.

10 thoughts on “Book Review: “A Monster Calls”

  1. Oh, I just finished this yesterday and LOVED it! It was one of the most beautiful books I think I’ve ever read and really touched my heart, as well as made me want to give my mom the biggest hug in the world. I’m a little wary of reviewing it myself because how do you review something so good and do it any kind of justice?!

    • His books are incredibly hard to review because of how amazing they are. I just tend to ramble on about what I loved (so everything, haha) so mine aren’t too helpful. 😛

  2. Loved this book, too. I’m not a crier but this one got to me in the end. This is the only book I’ve read by Patrick Ness but I’ll have to try out Chaos Walking based on your rec.
    Awesome review.

    • The sadness put me off for the longest time too. I found the sadness and crying to be very therapeutic. Maybe reading this on the way to a funeral wasn’t the best idea I’ve ever had though… Maybe save the book when you need get out all your sadness?

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