A Monster Calls: heart breaking, emotional and incredible.
During #SundayYAthon I read this amazing book and I couldn’t let it go without giving it its own blog post. It is SUCH an incredible story. And now that it’s a film, I may have to go see the film!
I’m sure people have been telling me to read this for a while. I’ve seen it floating around on Twitter and my Amazon list for a while, but I always brushed it off. I always figured I wouldn’t love it but then one of my twitter pals convinced me that it was totally worth it. However it came with a whole load of warnings. BEWARE/YOU WILL NEED TISSUES/I’M HERE IF YOU NEED ME/WE NEED TO TALK WHEN YOU FINISH CRYING. Oh lord, I was scared. Scared. I cry at books ALL THE TIME, but when it’s a book that everyone else cries at, I always worry. The last book that made me cry so much I couldn’t think properly was Me Before You and I was not ready for another one of those books. I still can’t think about Me Before You now without getting a bit teary.
“Conor has the same dream every night, ever since his mother first fell ill, ever since she started the treatments that don’t quite seem to be working. But tonight is different. Tonight, when he wakes, there’s a visitor at his window. It’s ancient, elemental, a force of nature. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth”
Woah. I know. How scary. The truth is a pretty terrifying thing to ask of anyone, but to ask it of a child who’s mam isn’t very well… well that’s something else entirely.
Now I must say there’s an illustrated version and I didn’t get that version but I wish I had! Everyone has been raving about how much it adds to the story! Although I liked imagining what the characters looked like myself. Especially the tree. He terrified me to be honest. And I’m an adult. This book deals with some very mature themes: illness, grief, struggling with school, nightmares but they are dealt with in such an amazing manner that you don’t feel like you’re being babied but also that you’re not thrust into the jaws of these, lets be honest, not very nice things.
I loved the story. The one thing we go to books for, their story… the thing they have to tell us. It was just glorious. Conor was looking for something and he found it but not in the way he thought he would. He discovers that sometimes the truth is the hardest thing to deal with, but that honesty is the best policy.
This book made me cry. I won’t lie. I cried so hard. But I loved it. His relationship with his mother juxtaposed with the relationship he has with his father and his grandmother and then this complicated friendship he has with the tree, just so beautifully written. So honestly portrayed.
Another book that I would totally recommend. The first chapter alone is worth its weight in gold. I will be using that chapter and the description in some way in the classroom, however my littles are too little to read the book.
(p.s. how adorable is my ‘Auntie Spot’ spoon bookmark from the twiglets?!)