by Clinton D. Harding
Overview (from B&N.com): Yesterday Jon Graves believed living and going to high school in the military occupied town of Carpenter was a snooze-fest. That is until a routine field trip to Carpenter’s science labs, when Jon and his friends uncover a military secret, the reason why the US Army stationed their parents in Carpenter… to create a top secret, genetically engineered species of monsters.
Yeah… that’s right… MONSTERS!
Now Jon and his four friends have liberated and adopted five of the monsters, vowing to keep the five monsters hidden away from harm. Harm being their parents and the US Army. These are not puppies and kittens, though. Keeping the monsters a secret turns into a difficult task when each one begins to develop amazing powers. And soon a betrayal from within the circle of friends will threaten to unravel the groups’ plans.
In order to keep the promise his friends and he made and prevent the Carpenter military from subjecting each monster to further inhuman experiments, Jon will need to bring his friends together for a rescue mission. Mysterious powers the teens begin to exhibit will offer aid but ultimately the group’s friendship will save the day. It’s just another chaotic day in high school… yeah, right!
Full Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, as part of the Blog Tour for Bad Monsters.
My Thoughts: If you discovered that monsters were real, would you decide to keep one as a pet? I doubt that I would, mainly because I’d constantly worry that it would eat my dog. That and I would have a hard time with the whole you shouldn’t try to domesticate something wild (e.g. lion, tigers and bears; oh my – The Wizard of Oz).
When I first read the overview for Our Monsters I was a bit apprehensive. It sounded kind of cool, but also like it could easily head into lame or cheesy territory. I was completely blown away by how creative the plot of Our Monsters is. There were nuances and little twists completely changing the direction of the plot and it had me wanting to read more.
The author’s descriptions of all of the characters, but specifically the monsters was so detailed that it took zero effort to imagine them in my mind’s eye. I loved all of the monsters and actually started to wonder if I could splice genes and somehow created my own hybrid monster (not really; that’s way too much work). The only human character I genuinely liked was George and he wasn’t the main character. Everyone else sort of got on my nerves. I’m not sure if it was the descriptions, conversations, or the way that you were led into thinking the main character, Jon, is cooler than he actually is (he seemed like a tool to me). I also disliked how many times it was repeated that Jon was adopted and an Asian American teen. My memory isn’t so bad that I needed a reminder of either of those things in each chapter.
So, Our Monsters wasn’t perfect. My biggest issue was the editing, or lack thereof. There were too many mistakes throughout the novel and it actually hindered my reading and took away from the awesomeness of the plot. Some of the conversations were stunted and awkward, but in the end it was the errors missed in editing that were too prevalent to be ignored.
Frankly, I think Our Monsters would make a pretty awesome movie. As long as they made the monsters scary when necessary and didn’t shy away from the parts with blood and gore, it could be an amazing book to movie adaptation. I did like Our Monsters and would recommend it, if it was re-edited and re-released. It’s a book packed with potential and deserves to have a fighting chance in the literary world.
3 out of 5 Bookmarks = I think I could’ve loved this book (a 4-4.5 rating), if there’d been more editing before it was published.