Review: Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Series: Monument 14 #1
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan
Publication Date: June 5, 2012
Age Group/Genre: Young Adult/Science Fiction, Post-Apocalyptic
Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.
Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.
But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.
Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.
In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart. (Cover and synopsis from Goodreads)
Fast-Paced and Action-Packed…
I love apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic books and movies, so I knew that I’d love Monument 14. I love the fact that these kids are stuck inside of a Super Target-style store, and that there’s a map of the store on the inside of the cover. And I read this book in one day, which is saying a lot, because I normally take several days to read a book. I had other things to do that day, but I was so engrossed in the story that I didn’t want to put it down.
The pace was quick, and there was lots of action and conflict throughout the story. I mean, just the beginning when the kids are on the school bus was a crazy scene in itself. And then everything that happens after they get stuck in the store was exciting and intriguing and completely seemed like how these kids would react in such a situation.
One of my favorite parts was when Dean gets inspired to write a poem in the middle of the night, and swears it’s awesome, and then in the morning he can barely read his writing and there are places where he has underlined, but there are no words above the underline. This kind of thing happens to me a lot! I get an idea for a plot or something while I’m drifting off to sleep so I write it down and in the morning I realize it either doesn’t make sense at all or it’s a horrible idea.
Kind of Censored?…
The only thing that kind of bothered me about the book was the fact that sometimes it seemed a bit censored. Like a person would use a curse word and it would just have the first letter and then a big line. I can understand why an author might not want to include certain words in their book, but I feel like it should have been left out, or it could have simply stated that the character cursed. It’s not a huge drawback to the story, but it did kind of take me out of the situation and made me wonder why the author or publisher decided to do that. Because I feel like in this situation, those teenagers are going to curse. And I know that some readers don’t like reading curse words, so I understand why they might want to be left out, but I feel like this was a strange way to do it.
Here are some of my favorite quotes from Monument 14: