Sunday, June 3, 2012

Monument 14 ~ Emmy Laybourne

I love how they added the correct
hair to one of the characters on the
cover! But I'm not gonna spoil it
though. Can you see who I am
referring to?
Title: Monument 14
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Pub Date: June 5, 2012
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
294 pages
Review copy courtesy of: Publisher and NetGalley

From Good Reads:
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.

In the year 2024, kids are heading to school; adults are off to work. Everything is normal. Until the hailstorm begins. Until a school bus crashes and explodes, while another one plows through a department store. Now a group of elementary, middle, and high school students are stranded in the department store while the sole adult leaves in search of help. 

Riot gates descend and now they are cut off from the outside. There is no way out, and no way in (until later in the story). The students finally find an "old" flat screen tv that is not on the 'network.' Now they know what is going on outside. The truth is almost as frightening as not knowing. From natural disasters to a military experiment gone wrong to chemical leakages.

Life goes on as usual as it can for fourteen kids living in a department store. Then a knock comes on the gate, and the students decide to let the two men in.Will this be salvation or a a mistake?

I started Monument 14 around 10:45 pm Friday night. I was up until 1:30 am Saturday morning finishing it. I could not stop reading! From page one I was hooked. The suspense did not let up. Granted, some of the plot points felt a little far-fetched to me. Five and six year olds knowing the difference in 48 inch and 24 inch curtains? A second grader who is not only a Bible thumper but the next Giada/Paula in the kitchen? Kindergarteners expected to get water, Gatorade, and cookies? Unless it is singles like 16-20 ounce bottles how are they going to carry them let alone push a buggy and put it all in there? Yes, it all could happen, but I had trouble accepting these ideas. That decreased some of my enjoyment. The story also reminded me of The Mist-the Stephen King book to movie. I never read the book, but the movie messed me up for days.

So other than a few personal pet peeves: "Here's what she sang." "Here was my poem." I can't stand that, something like "She sang" then move into the lyrics would have been a much smoother transition in my opinion. Again, other than those peeves, get your hands on this book! It is definitely worth it!

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