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A specially formatted edition of Patrick Ness’s masterpiece features the entire illustrated novel as well as a bonus interview with the illustrator and early sketches for the book.
To celebrate the release of Patrick Ness’s acclaimed novel as a feature film, directed by Juan Antonio Bayona, this gorgeous edition of A Monster Calls includes Jim Kay’s original illustrations, which inspired the animated scenes in the film, as well as an interview with Jim Kay and previously unpublished early sketches. No matter what Apple device you are using, you can enjoy this edition. On the iPad in landscape mode, artwork will be at its most stunning; on smaller devices, switch to "Scrolling View" for reflowable text and optimal readability.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
It’s not every day that a book takes our breath away, but Patrick Ness’s darkly imaginative story about a boy cracking up under the weight of grief did just that. With stunning illustrations from Jim Kay, A Monster Calls tracks Conor O’Malley as he deals with his loving mother’s terminal illness, absentee father, prickly grandmother, and a sly bully at school. Ness has always wowed us with his unflinching honesty and talent for weaving fairytales and reality together, so we’re excited to hear that he was tapped to write the screenplay for the film adaptation of this brilliant novel.
In his introduction to this profoundly moving, expertly crafted tale of unaccountable loss, Ness explains how he developed the story from a set of notes left by Siobhan Dowd, who died in 2007 before she had completed a first draft. "I felt and feel as if I've been handed a baton, like a particularly fine writer has given me her story and said, Go. Run with it. Make trouble.' " What Ness has produced is a singular masterpiece, exceptionally well-served by Kay's atmospheric and ominous illustrations. Conor O'Malley is 13. His mother is being treated for cancer; his father, Liam, has remarried and lives in America; and Conor is left in the care of a grandmother who cares more for her antique wall clock than her grandson. This grim existence is compounded by bullies at school who make fun of his mother's baldness, and an actual nightmare that wakes Conor, screaming, on a recurring basis. Then comes the monster part human, part arboreal a hulking yew tree that walks to his window just after midnight and tells three inscrutable parables, each of which disappoints Conor because the good guy is continually wronged. "Many things that are true feel like a cheat," the monster explains. In return for the monster's stories, Conor must tell his own, and the monster demands it be true, forcing Conor, a good boy, a dutiful son, to face up to his feelings: rage and, worse still, fear. If one point of writing is to leave something that transcends human existence, Ness has pulled a fast one on the Grim Reaper, finishing the story death kept Dowd from giving us. It is a story that not only does honor to her memory, it tackles the toughest of subjects by refusing to flinch, meeting the ugly truth about life head-on with compassion, bravery, and insight. Ages 12 up.
I truly love this book.
Devastating in the best way
“I wish I had a hundred years,” she said, very quietly. “A hundred years I could give to you.”
This book was one big heart throb. I don’t have words for how beautiful it is.
This is a wonderful story that will stay with me forever. The author describes the battle we wage with grief in an unconventional way. The illustrations are gorgeous and haunting.