Sometimes you need a monster...

A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness, Jim Kay

The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do.

opening lines

 

The monster says that Conor is the one who called him. But Conor doesn't understand - if the monster isn't here to save his mother, then why? The monster tells Conor three stories and then asks Conor to tell his truth. Conor's truth is the one thing he doesn't want to face. Conor's mother has cancer and is undergoing treatment. Conor feels like he is invisible at school and he is feeling many different emotions that he doesn't know how to deal with. Conor's grandmother comes to help, but Conor feels like she just makes things worse.

 

This is an amazing story. It deals with the difficult subject of terminal illness and the emotions all family members face in this situation, especially children. The monster is a great character and the stories he tells have meanings even though Conor has difficulty figuring them out.

 

Conor is going through such a difficult time and I really felt for him. I understood his anger and just wanted to give him a hug. The people around Conor want to help him, but they really don't know how. I think that happens a lot in these situations because like Conor, people don't always know what they want or need.

 

I haven't seen the movie yet, but I'm planning to. If it is anything like the book, I will like it, but I'm not getting my hopes up.