Meet Monster. Meet Judy. Two humans who don't like each other much, but together must fight dragons, fire-breathing felines, trolls, Inuit walrus dogs, and a crazy cat lady - for the future of the universe.
Monster runs a pest-control agency. He's overworked and has domestic troubles - like having the girlfriend from hell.
Judy works the night shift at the local Food Plus Mart. Not the most glamorous life, but Judy is happy. No one bothers her, and if she has to spell things out for the night-manager every now and again, so be it.
But when Judy finds a Yeti in the freezer aisle eating all the Rocky Road, her life collides with Monster's in a rather alarming fashion. Because Monster doesn't catch raccoons; he catches the things that go bump in the night. Things like ogres, trolls, and dragons. Oh, and his girlfriend from Hell? She actually is from Hell.
©2009 A. Lee Martinez (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
"Martinez pokes at big-picture questions, like the nature of the universe and the meaning of life, with abundant, zany humor in this charming tale." (Publishers Weekly)
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
Ummmm... I couldn't finish it.
I suppose it is meant to be funny, or maybe there is some hidden 'message' in it... but I didn't see the humor, or get the message.
It was a series of incrementally dumber 'monster' contacts where people get squished or burnt, or whatever, in comical ways, and then recover from whatever the mutilation was. It is very childish... and some scenes are just plain dumb. Like the winged horse scene that eventually develops into the main character being sucked into a giant worm - it has absolutely no purpose but to allow the author to let his imagination flow, and add some potentially icky scenes (I say "potentially icky" because in my world, it is really only children who are amused by slime in the way this author seems to be).
Nearer the end there seems to be some over-arching storyline that, maybe, is meant to explain all the foolishness. But, sorry, the lame stereotype old witch and a 'universe in a stone' was just too much for me.
And, no, it is not urban fantasy; urban fantasy is supposed to be mature, and possibly a bit on the dark side. This book is a comic fantasy... in the manner that you would expect a story in a children's/comic book to be.
The narration is okay. There is nothing graphic in the book, and I don't think there is much swearing.
I rate as follows: 5-Best of the best, 4-LOVED it, 3-LIKED it, 2-Meh, 1-Didn't like it. Fav genres: sci-fi/fantasy, fiction, science
This book was a huge letdown for me. I listened to Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain (also by Martinez) and loved it, so I was excited to pick up Monster. Unfortunately, I found it boring, unfunny and devoid of likeable characters. Skip this one and pick up Emperor Mollusk instead.
We took a holiday up to Port MacQ (nsw, Aussie) and had a fun drive whilst listening.
I love Tom Holts books and the overall fun use of fantasy is very enjoyable. The way the story weaves around the characters to give the metaphorical appearance of Aesculapius.The Staff being the story and the characters wrapping themselves around giving the reader a journey of enjoyment.
Both my wife and I loved the book and decided to drive 250 kms the long way home to listen to the end of the story.
Joined the authors Fansite and wrote that we were gonna buy the rest of the books and audiobooks.
thanks for a great phone app. I do a lot of driving walking and the audio book has become a good companion.
A fresh interpretation!
Obviously writing about the supernatural is big business these days, but Monster has such a hapless main character that I found it quite unique. Everyone is kinda nasty, but it's hilarious! I think the premise is very promising, and although the writing could use some polish, seeing the characters develop could be great fun if this continues on in a series.
It's truly hard to find something a little bit different, and this was it. I listened to Automatic Detective and was impressed with it, too, so thought I'd try Monster. Such a sense of fun in the writing and story.
Pretty much did - kept walking around with it at work and plugging myself in whenever I had a spare minute or two. :)
My only complaint with this book are 2 things:
1. they could have chosen a better selection for the sample.
2. for so many catastrophic things to be happening nothing really happened with the characters at the end. No one changed, no one learned anything. They just went on like nothing happened and when they run into each other its odd. I was all in to this book until the ending was so mundane and every day that I was left disappointed
But there were so many cool things going on and cool ideas. And many characters I very much loved and I was hoping that there would be more dialog just to hear them talk.
This may be a really good book if it's the type of book you like. I can't judge it's merits because it's not my cup of tea. The 2 star rating is because it was compared to Terry Pratchett's books. The reason I bought was only partly because the sample seemed interesting... and mostly because we are told if we love Terry Pratchett we will like A. Lee Martinez. Comparing A. Lee Martinez to Terry Pratchett is like comparing a puddle to an ocean. Both are water but that's about all they have in common.
Not at Emperor Mollusk level but just shy.
There needs to be a series for both books, A. Lee is missing an opportunity.
Whimsy / Mystical Magical / Hillarious / Great story arc / Sardonic Lucky hero?
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