Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff

The Monsters of Templeton (edition 2008)

by Lauren Groff

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,0241183,308 (3.66)150
Title:The Monsters of Templeton
Authors:Lauren Groff
Info:Voice/Hyperion (2008), Edition: 1st ed, Hardcover, 384 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff

Recently added byprivate library, TheresaCIncinnati, impatienke, TLJ, tpthatcher, ShyPageSniffer, coralie23, LNBM88
  1. 40
    The Lace Reader: A Novel by Brunonia Barry (amyblue)
  2. 30
    Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl (lyzadanger)
    lyzadanger: Precocious young women in small towns.
  3. 10
    The Thirteenth Tale: A Novel by Diane Setterfield (amyblue)
  4. 10
    The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe (rbtanger)
    rbtanger: Similar feel to the writing styles. Complicated mother/daughter relationships and strong Yankee atmosphere.
  5. 00
    The Secret of Lost Things by Sheridan Hay (y2pk)
    y2pk: Young woman on a quest; literary subplots.
  6. 00
    The Lagoon by Lilli Carré (rjuris)
  7. 00
    The River Wife by Jonis Agee (rbtanger)
    rbtanger: Although not exactly similar in terms of plot line, there is a definite likeness in feel and atmosphere as well as the use of several overlapping story lines.
  8. 00
    What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us by Laura van den Berg (rjuris)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 150 mentions

English (116)  Spanish (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (118)
Showing 1-5 of 116 (next | show all)
It is hard to put this book in a particular genre. It is a mystery, an historical novel, a ghost story, a fantasy replete with a mythical creature, and just a good story. It's characters are memorable and lovable - even the monster! How could anyone not love Vivienne or the Running Buds? To say much about the book would be a spoiler - so just read it! ( )
  TheresaCIncinnati | Aug 17, 2015 |
The first sentence reads ... "The day I returned to Templeton steeped in disgrace, the 50-foot corpse of a monster surfaced in Lake Glimmerglass.” The monster however is not the main focus of this engaging book. The quest to find her real father, dealing with "the lump" and a severely ill friend lead Willi on a path which traces the history of her small town. Throw in an ex-hippie mother, a group of runners and some really juicy secrets and I found this book an interesting journey.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
An interesting book--original but ultimately forgettable. I decided to read this only because of a disguised Cooperstown where I attend the Opera each summer. The author's paean to her hometown, Cooperstown, New York in the novel very, very thinly disguised as Templeton. The story is told through generations of the Upton and Temple families. Each chapter about one of the ancestors unearths another secret and more leaves on the family tree sprout. I am assuming the monster pulled from Lake Glimmerglass, er, Oswego, is a symbol for those secrets.

Willie [Wilhelmina] Upton, now pregnant, returns from Alaska and an affair with her archaeology professor to her hometown, Templeton, New York. Her mother, Vi, has told her only that her father is a sperm donor but won't reveal who he is. Willie traces back the lives of different generations: "the many messy centuries of my messy, messy family", trying to ascertain his identity. She pieces things together from letters, diary entries and other writings. The only importance of a jogging club, the Running Buds, I could see was to pull the dead monster from the lake and who were quirky examples of townspeople. I liked the monster's dying thoughts and the birth of a new WHITE monster at the end of the novel. Will the townspeople still have secrets but good ones this time? The different genealogies helped me in following the story. ( )
  janerawoof | Jun 7, 2015 |
Emily's choice, March 2013
  cturner | Jul 27, 2014 |
Good idea, but main character got a little wearing as she seemed so oblivious to the needs and thoughts of others. The lake monster seemed nice. ( )
  travel.bug | Mar 20, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 116 (next | show all)
A first-time novelist sets herself a nearly impossible task by employing characters invented by a novelist acknowledged as an American master. Unlike James Fenimore Cooper, though, Groff can write. . . And while I loved the unintentional effrontery of showing up that unreadable great, I was also conscious of being a captive audience at a recital. . . “The Monsters of Templeton” is propelled, and undone, by ambition.
The result is a pleasurably surreal cross between The Stone Diaries and Kind Hearts and Coronets.
The trouble with “The Monsters of Templeton” is that its complications seem nonstop. . . Ms. Groff’s inexperience shows in this overcrowding, as it does in overly mellifluous turns of phrase (“the deer darting startled through the dark”). And she tries out more voices and documents than she can comfortably create.
The whole find-your-real-dad scavenger hunt is a little contrived. . . But Groff has concocted such a rich trove of source documents – portraits, old letters, journal entries, and reminiscences by characters lifted from Fenimore Cooper's writings – that readers will be too busy gleefully burrowing into the fictitious past she has created to mind.
[A] delightful and challenging novel. . . Groff breathes new life into her vivid characters, even those on loan from Cooper's novels.

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lauren Groffprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lee, Ann MarieNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
"Ah, my friend, 'tis true!" cried old Natty Bumppo, slapping his knee. "A man cannot know hisself if he don't know where he come from." --Jacob Franklin Temple, The Pilgrims of Templeton
Who can open the doors of his face? His teeth are terrible round about. . . By his neesings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning . . . He maketh a path to shine after him; one would think the deep to be hoary. Upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear. He beholdeth all things: he is a king over all the children of pride. --The King James Bible, Job 41: 14, 18, 32-34
This is a story of creation --Marmaduke Temple, Tales of the American Wilderness, 1797
For my parents, Gerald and Jeannine Groff
First words
The day I returned to Templeton steeped in disgrace, the fifty-foot corpse of a monster surfaced in Lake Glimmerglass.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Publisher's Summary:
In the wake of a disastrous affair with her older, married archeology professor at Stanford, brilliant Wilhelmina Cooper arrives back at the doorstep of her hippie mother-turned-born-again-Christian's house in Templeton, New York - a storybook town her ancestors founded that sits on the shores of Lake Glimmerglass. Upon her arrival, a prehistoric monster surfaces in the lake, bringing a feeding frenzy to the quiet town. And Willie learns she has a mystery father her mother has kept secret for Willie's entire life.

The beautiful, broody Willie is told that the key to her biological father's identity lies somewhere in her twisted family tree. She finds more than she bargained for as a chorus of voices from the town's past, some sinister, all fascinating, rise up around her to tell their side of the story. In the end, dark secrets come to light, past and present day are blurred, and old mysteries are finally put to rest.

This is a fresh, virtuoso performance that will surely place Groff among the best young writers of today.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 140134092X, Paperback)

Amazon Best of the Month, February 2008: On the very morning Willie Upton slinks home to Templeton, New York (after a calamitous affair with her archeology professor), the 50-foot-long body of a monster floats from the depths of the town's lake. This unsettling coincidence sets the stage for one of the most original debut novels since The Time Traveler’s Wife. With a clue to the mysterious identity of her father in hand, Willie turns her research skills to unearthing the secrets of the town in letters and pictures (which, "reproduced" in the book along with increasingly complete family trees, lend an air of historical authenticity). Lauren Groff's endearingly feisty characters imbue the story with enough intrigue to keep readers up long past bedtime, and reading groups will find much to discuss in its themes of "monsters," both in our towns and our families. --Mari Malcolm

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:28 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"In the wake of a wildly disastrous affair with her married archaeology professor, Willie Upton arrives on the doorstep of her ancestral home in Templeton, New York, where her hippie-turned-born-again-Baptist mom, Vi, still lives. Willie expects to be able to hide in the place that has been home to her family for generations, but the monster's death changes the fabric or the quiet, picture-perfect town her ancestors founded. Even further, Willie learns that the story her mother had always told her about her father has all been a lie: he wasn't the random man from a free-love commune that Vi had led her to imagine, but someone else entirely. Someone from this very town." "As Willie puts her archaeological skills to work digging for the truth about her lineage, she discovers that the secrets of her family run deep. Through letters, editorials, and journal entries, the dead rise up to tell their sides of the story as dark mysteries come to light, past and present blur, old stories are finally put to rest, and the shocking truth about more than one monster is revealed."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
46 avail.
152 wanted
5 pay5 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.66)
0.5 2
1 13
1.5 3
2 41
2.5 18
3 151
3.5 64
4 253
4.5 36
5 99


2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Store | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 99,148,227 books! | Top bar: Always visible