Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Monument 14 - Emmy Laybourne - ARC Review

Lord of the flies meets The day after tomorrow.

I must admit I was worried that this would be a typical 'no adults around - kids go wild' novel when I accepted it for review but I was surprised at how much I actually enjoyed this book and at how deeply I was engrossed in the story.
   Monument 14 is about fourteen children/teenagers who end up stranded together in Monument with no adults around after a disaster devastates the United States of America and the story unfolds from there. 
   They take refuge in a supermarket where they have everything to cater their needs from clean clothes to food, toys and even TVs to keep themselves as up to date as possible with their situation. Although this is highly convenient for the teens, managing the health and happiness of the other 13 around them is not so easy. 
   Imagine you're stuck in your local supermarket with kids ranging from Kindergarten to Senior year. They're irritating, arrogant, crying and howling, demanding what they can't have - how would you cope? Who should be in charge, if anyone? Should you stick together? Is rationing food a smart thing to do? All of these decisions rest on indecisive teens who can't agree on anything.
   We follow Dean, one of the 14 survivors as he endures the harsh situation they have all been thrown into. I don't really know what to say about the plot without spoiling it; I'm sure you can guess what it'd be like (but you won't guess all of the twists! I liked the 'cliffhanger' at the end!)
   I think I mainly enjoyed this novel because of the characterisation. Normally if there's so many main characters, I get confused and frustrated and the book tends not to be a hit with me, but all fourteen of the children/teens had unique personalities so I found them easy to identify and I always knew who everyone was/why they'd chosen to do whatever it is they did.
   As a whole this was an enjoyable post-apocalyptic novel and I do recommend it to fans of the genre. Make of it what you wish but I enjoyed it and think that Laybourne managed to add her own unique spin on a very common genre amongst teenagers.
   The sequel sounds to be promising after the events that unfolded throughout, and the knots left untied at the end of, this novel!

4 Stars ****

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