Review: ‘A Monster Calls’ by Patrick Ness

I received this book for free from publisher unsolicited in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: ‘A Monster Calls’ by Patrick NessA Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
Published by Candlewick Press on September 15th, 2011
Genres: Children, Contemporary, Fantasy & Magic, Horror
Pages: 205
Format: Hardcover
Source: publisher unsolicited
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 it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.

It wants the truth.

Chapters/IndigoThe Book DepositoryAmazon CanadaGood Reads


Boy, when you judge a book by its cover, you can be completely wrong. I read the little jacket synopsis, and I saw the creepy vibe of the illustrations, but once I started reading this I couldn’t stop. It’s not what I expected, at all which is also a big reason why I loved it.

Conor is a thirteen year old boy whose mother is battling cancer. One night he starts having nightmares of a monster that comes to his house and starts talking to him. The monster tells him three stories and the last one Conor has to tell him a story in exchange.

I can’t even begin to describe how I felt after reading this book. You can feel how Conor feels and what he goes through. And being so young, you want to take care of him and and even protect him from the pain. His character is beautifully developed that Conor feels so real. I fell in love with Patrick Ness’ writing. He writes incredibly well and vivid and they way he incorporates his quotes right into the story, with such inspiring prose. Ahh it pulls at your heart and tugs it right off yor chest. Reading a book in one sitting is fairly rare because I get bored quite easily. Not the case with this book, I read it straight through and that ending pretty much just killed me.

What starts out as a scary and vivid nightmare turns into a heartfelt and touching story about family, friendship, death, love and loss.

I highly recommend buying this one to add to your collection. Don’t borrow, buy it because it’s also become one of my favourite books I’ve read this year.

Conor matures throughout the book rather nicely, and the supporting characters add a nice touch to the story.

Perfectly done. I wasn’t bored at all. I read this in one sitting.

Cover & Design
Such a creepy and sinister cover. Love the details inside. I wouldn’t have picked it up because I’m such a wimp, but then again once you read this book, you’ll forget about it. Don’t judge a book by its cover. I love the illustrations, they added even more depth to the book.

One of my favourite stories. So much to learn, so many great quotes. I loved the story.

An instant favourite and a book you must buy. It deserves to be in my favourites pile.


Stories are wild creatures, the monster said. When you let them loose, who knows what havoc they might wreak?
There is not always a good guy. Nor is there a bad one. Most people are somewhere in between.
Belief is half of all healing. Belief in the cure, belief in the future that awaits.
The green things of this world are just wonderous, aren’t they? We work so hard to get rid of them when sometimes they’re the very thing that saves us.
You do not write your life with words, the monster said. You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.





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  2. Diana Grace

    February 15, 2014 at 2:02 AM

    This book sounds super interesting. Wonderful review! 🙂
    Diana Grace recently posted…COVER REVEAL: Flawed Perfection (Beautifully Flawed 1) by Cassandra GiovanniMy Profile

  3. fatma shahin

    September 29, 2013 at 11:36 PM

    Anything Patrick Ness writes I will read! He is so amazing and I am in love with eeach and every one of his books!

  4. FJ

    June 28, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Oh boy, I want this book so badly!

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  6. Imel Cullen

    January 18, 2013 at 9:22 AM

    thanks for review and it’s great, book cover so creepy btw, 😀

  7. Ashley @ FireStarBooks

    December 11, 2012 at 7:31 PM

    Oh my sister totally loved this book…yup she cried. It seriously seems like a creepy but heartfelt book. Great review G 😀

  8. Sarah p

    December 1, 2012 at 12:20 AM

    I am so so so excited by this book! I can’t wait to read it…its been added to my need to read list for sure 🙂 thanks for sharing!

  9. Samantha

    November 29, 2012 at 8:09 PM

    I came across this book a while ago but I wasn’t sure if I should pick it up. I got distracted with other books so I never came back to it, but it sounds so good and exactly what I’d be into. Thanks for the review I’ll definitely be picking this up as soon as I can.

  10. Sandra

    November 27, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    Ah, I’m so glad you loved this! I’ve been thinking about getting this, debating back and forth, and after your review I think I’m going to snatch it up 🙂 I’m excited to read it now. It sounds like a book with some surprises (creepy ones?).


  11. Anne C

    November 27, 2012 at 10:41 AM

    I want this! I love anything scary, books and movies! Thanks for the recommendation!

  12. Jaime Lester

    November 26, 2012 at 11:14 PM

    I love this cover. It is so very, VERY creepy. Seriously creepy. But until now, I had no idea what the book was actually about. I love the sound of this book. I love your review. I love that it is a young adult book that is not afraid to get emotional. This book is on my TBR, and I might just move it a few places. Thanks for the review!

  13. Sarah O

    November 26, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    I remember first hearing about Patrick Ness’ books a few years ago and only heard great things but for some reason I never picked one up. I really need to read this. I think the cover’s cool, but it’s really not for me, so I’m tempted to order an alternate one from the book depository.

  14. Brent

    November 26, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    great review

  15. Carol

    November 26, 2012 at 8:36 AM

    I’ve had this book on my TBR for quite some time now. I’m not sure why I didn’t pick up this one but I think the cover and the description didn’t quite pull me in. =/

    BTW like Grace said, nice change in the rating system display! =D

  16. Rebecca

    November 26, 2012 at 4:21 AM

    I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed it. I’ve only heard the best things about Patrick Ness and A Monster Call, plus the illustrations makes me want to pick up a copy soon. I saw this in store but decided not to get it as I’m trying to not buy books and read the ones I already own so once my shelf has cleared a bit, I’ll definitely look into buying a copy.

    I’m not a big fan of book trailers but I actually like A Monster Call’s. It’s professional and suits the book well. Thanks for including it with your amazing review, it definitely sells the book even further 🙂

  17. Dragana @ BookwormDreams

    November 26, 2012 at 1:42 AM

    I am also guilty of judging this book by the cover. I thought that it is a simple scary read. But your review now got me intrigued.
    Great review, I love it that you did not tell us too much about the book, just enough to tickle our interest. 🙂

  18. Grace Lo

    November 26, 2012 at 1:40 AM

    Wonderful review! I have a book of Patrick Ness’ sitting on my shelf and waiting to be read, but I never gotten around to it! A Monster Calls sounds so amazingly pure and wonderful, and I’m looking forward to reading it! Now I’m not quite sure what to expect as I thought it’d be completely creeps-up-your-spine-ish from the cover . . .

    P.S. Love your new way of reviewing! It shoots down all the main selling points of a book!

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