47 of 50 people found the following review helpful
Crying at night,
This review is from: Monster (Paperback)My parents courted by playing the "first line" game. One person says the first line of a favorite book of theirs and the other person guesses the piece of literature quoted. "Monster"'s first line is a doozy, and I doubt anyone, once hearing it, could do anything but guess its title correctly.
"The best time to cry is at night, when the lights are out and someone is screaming for help".
So writes Steve Harmon, the sixteen year-old accused felon and hero of this story. Myers adeptly creates a new form of fiction in this Printz winner of a book. Finding jail too painful to endure, Steve recounts his life and court appearances by styling his journal in the form of a movie. The title of this movie "Monster" refers to a statement made by the leading prosecutor about Steve, the defendant. Falsely accused of aiding and abetting a robbery and consequent murder of a local drugstore and its manager, Steve recounts his current status, his past hopes and dreams, and the pain he must endure day to day. Kids reading this book might have some difficulty grasping exactly how this book's protagonist is connected to the murder. Certainly there isn't a detailed description of the extent to which Steve was connected to the killers in the neighborhood. But Myers gives his readers a lot of credit, believing they'll figure out what's going on, on their own. Steve's experiences in jail are a pared down version of the t.v. show "Oz". There are several references to sexual assault, in addition to violence and some mild language. I wouldn't be handing this book to your five-year-old but for any kid that's curious about jail or being "tough", this book can do you no wrong.