An unflinching, darkly funny, and deeply moving story of a boy, his seriously ill mother, and an unexpected monstrous visitor.

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. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd– whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself– Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.”


This book was a little over-hyped in my opinion.

It read a little on the younger side for me. It was classified as YA but I think it was more in the middle grade area. Lots of hype around this book made my expectations high but they weren’t met for the most part.

Starting off with the character of Conor, I couldn’t really connect with him. Yes I have had a loved one deal with terminal cancer (2 actually) and it is very hard to deal with, so emotionally I knew what he was going through. Other than that, there was just something missing that made me not feel connected to him at all.

Then going into the plot, this is where I did feel connected with the story. Like I said previously, I knew what it is like to have a loved one deal with terminal cancer. I watched both of my grandmothers go through that battle. As I was reading this book, all I could think about was those days seeing my loved ones fight and ultimately lose that battle with this horrible disease. So I really liked that aspect. It was the redeeming aspect of this book for me. The rest of the plot felt a little slow and I didn’t really like the “monster” aspect of the story but then again, I feel those were necessary for Ness to include to make us readers feel what Conor was going through.

Overall, I think this book was good but not as good as everyone had hyped it up to be. Ness has a great writing style perfectly suited for the fantasy genre so I will be checking out his other works. I know this book was also recently turned into a movie so I will also be checking that out in the near future.