Book Review #41: A Monster Calls- Patrick Ness


Title: A Monster Calls
Author: Patrick Ness
Publication: March 12th 2013, Candlewick Press (first published 2011)
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Horror
Pages: 206
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 0763660655 / 9780763660659

Goodreads | Bookdepository | Amazon


At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. 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 monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth.

book review1

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

“There is not always a good guy. Nor is there always a bad one. Most people are somewhere in between.”

I always thought that monsters are terrifying and ghastly… But through this book, I discovered that what I always thought was right. Monsters are scary because they made us say and face the things we’re mostly afraid to- the truth.

“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.”

This book is a story of a young boy, Conor, who lived with his mother in a small house with a backyard where a view of a church and a yew tree can be seen. Conor started to have a nightmare, and he’d wake up screaming every 12:07. One night, after having the same nightmare, he’d woke up and heard that someone’s calling his name. A voice was calling his name, definitely not his mother, but someone whose voice is raspy and monstrous. And that is the beginning of him meeting the monster, not from the nightmare, but a monster who’ll tell him three tales and will let him face the truth he is afraid above all.

Stories are important, the monster said. They can be more important than anything. If they carry the truth.

I don’t know where to start because every piece of this book is just beautiful and heart-breaking. Starting from the character, to its plot, to Ness’s writing style. It is a magnificent book that I am wishing it were not a 200+ page only. The characters, starting from Conor, down to the bully Harry was splendidly described and every one has its unique personality and characteristic. The plot, a very unusual but unexpectedly enticing, will surely capture a reader’s interest. And for Ness’s writing style, it was fortuitously easy to get used to. I love how the pace started from a normal to an intense and emotional ending.

“Your mind will believe comforting lies while also knowing the painful truths that make those lies necessary. And your mind will punish you for believing both.”

This book just messed up my entire human being. I can’t comprehend on how these compilation of pages ended up to be something so… wonderful. I love how the emotions flow out of the pages of the book. It made me cry, sympathize, wonder, and all other at the same time with Conor whilst reading this book. I am in awe as well on how the horror of seeing your nightmare becomes a reality was shown, and how facing the truth was scary, like deadly scary too.

Sometimes people need to lie to themselves most of all.

This is one of the books that will always have a special place in my heart. It is carved in my heart, and I can’t wait to read more of Patrick Ness’s books! I totally recommend this book, it’s a good one. Regardless if you’re an adult or a child, this book is profoundly full of love, and everyone deserves to at least read this. I mean, it’s one of the best I’ve read so far, and I don’t want you to miss it.

PS: A movie will be released based on this book and I’m so giddy I want to watch it right now! And I can’t wait to cry too, ugh.



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 Costa Children’s Book Award. Born in Virginia, he currently lives in London. To know more about him, head on to his site.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s