“Writers—even unpublished ones—loved characters, and Shade Darby was definitely a character.”
(Chapter 3, Monster by Michael Grant)
As a reader, there is a delicious pleasure when you finally hold in your hand a book that’s been long awaited. “Monster” by Michael Grant is the one book release of 2017 that I most anticipated — anxiously checking the calendar and mentally counting down the days.
And it didn’t disappoint.
I read “Monster” in less than 24 hours because I had to know, not only how this particular story would end, but I needed to have a glimpse into where Grant might be taking readers as he continues to weave the threads that all began with “Gone”.
“Monster” is Book 7 in the “Gone” series by author Michael Grant. Its story picks up four years after the dome comes down in “Light”. Do you absolutely need to read the first six books before picking up “Monster”? Eh — not exactly, but you really should. And it’s worth it. You want to read the whole series and get a real feel for characters, the horror of the FAYZ, and why this aftermath is a story that also must be told.
Fans of the “Gone” series will enjoy a few familiar names, both hero and villain, as the story of “Monster” unfolds. We get to see what Dekka is doing four years later and how she’s survived, there’s a surprising moment with Diana, a bit of info on Taylor, and then there is Drake. Yes, Drake is back and he’s every bit as evil as he ever was—maybe more.
In addition to the familiar names, readers meet Shade Darby, Cruz, and Malik. I liked this trio. A lot. Shade’s smart, resourceful, and despite being extremely obsessive, she’s also kind. Cruz is very likable and I can’t wait to see how she continues to develop as the story evolves further, but she’s got an inner strength and courage that I admire. Then there’s Malik. Love can get you killed, but I’m not sure yet if that makes a difference to him or not.
There’s also Armo, who teams up with Dekka and an artist named Justin, a.k.a. Knightmare. Author Grant throws in power-hungry military commanders, secret government laboratories (filled with unspeakable horrors), and yes, there is a monster. I’m not going to give spoilers because I want you to read the book and experience it. Trust me.
One of my favorite things about the “Gone” series and the author’s style of writing is the action sequences. As you read, it’s like a high-intensity blockbuster, action-movie playing out in your head. If you’re a fan of action movies like Pacific Rim, Transformers, or X-Men—you’ll enjoy this type of book.
There’s a good balance in “Monster” between the intense action, tech, and character development. And then there is Chapter 18: Going Home. It gave me all the feels. All.The.Feels. Beautifully written and another level of closure from the original story.
So I’m sure it comes as no surprise that I recommend “Monster” by Michael Grant. If you haven’t read the first six books in the “Gone” series read those first and then definitely read “Monster.” You can find it here. According to the “Gone” Wiki, the next book (#8) is “Villain” and #9 is “Hero”. As soon as I find release dates, I’ll be sure to share.