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Monster

by Walter Dean Myers

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
4,9833441,809 (3.73)1 / 66
While on trial as an accomplice to a murder, sixteen-year-old Steve Harmon records his experiences in prison and in the courtroom in the form of a film script as he tries to come to terms with the course his life has taken.
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» See also 66 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 343 (next | show all)
M.O.N.S.T.E.R, this book had me at the end of my seat at the end of the story. The story line is very good and is very factual that happens in today’s world. Like Steve in this novel getting in trouble for a crime he never committed.

The book does a good job talking about what goes on throughout America where most police departments will blame someone with colored skin. The author does a great job describing what is going on. The setting for the book seems accurate as it is set in Harlem and Manhattan which is where a lot of crimes that happen in the book go on.

The main character is a African-American named Steve Harmon. Steve is on trial for a murder he didn’t commit during an armed robbery of a gas station. They just because he was in there a little bit before and he happens to be standing outside of the store they think that he was the look out for two men. The two men argued with the store owner and shot him point blank and the assistant of the store owner heard the gun go off and called the cops. He saw the two men run away. In trial the people who were there did not have any good evidence against Steve. He was in there for a short time and did not buy anything. Then he walked out of the store across the street and he was getting blamed for the murder of the gas station owner Mr. Nesbitt. The evidence that was provided through out the trial was very good. The author did a very good job with how the people were talking and how they were exchanging words.

The pathos was very good throughout the entire story. Walter Dean Myers did a very good job making sure that the reader had the emotion of what was going on in the trial and through the story. Because every person had some type of emotional appeal to the story.

If I were asked to recommend this to someone. I do not know if I would or not because of how boring the beginning is. You need to be very patient because the first eighty ish pages were pretty brutal but once you get the trial it gets very interesting and always has you at the end of your seat. But I really do not know anyone who wants to go through eighty pages of a book and think it is the most boring thing of all time. But if you are willing to get through the tough beginning I think you would love this book. I am surprised I made it through the book because of the tough beginning. The story is very easy to read I think just based on there not being many words on each page of the book. I really hope my review on this book can help anyone who is interested or wanting to read this book. ( )
  AlexGreuel | May 24, 2022 |
I have wanted to read this book for a long while and I'm glad to have finally gotten to it. A lot of the story is written in screenplay format, since Steve Harmon, the sixteen-year-old main character, is a filmmaker. This didn't bother me since I come from a screenwriting background. However, each chapter begins with a look into the personal thoughts of Steve, like he's writing in his diary. It's a welcome addition because one of the drawbacks of screenwriting is anything that isn't seen or heard is not written. In screenwriting, we don't know what a character is thinking, unless it is intentional through voice over. The "diary entries" allow us to go deeper into Steve's head, to understand what he's going through better. The story unfolds predominently in a courtroom as Steve's fate is decided, with flashbacks peppered throughout. There's only so much depth you can portray in an screenplay. I think the book could have been even stronger had it been written as a straight novel, because being wrongly accused of felony murder at sixteen is compelling narrative. ( )
  lee.gabel | Dec 22, 2021 |
Written in a screen-play formate, "Monster" tells the story of Steve, an African American teenager on trial. This novel is a good choice to include in your classroom library, for it offers opportunities for students to experience diversity, the American legal system, race, and so much more. With the book being written like a script for a play or movie, this book can also be used as a way to introduce, and familiarize, students with reading scripts. ( )
  OliviaBean | Nov 5, 2021 |
16-year old Steve Harmon is on trial as the lookout man in a Harlem convenience store robbery gone wrong, and the manager is killed with his own gun. The story is told in a unorthodox manner, switching between entries in Steve's diary and an imagined screenplay. Portrayed as a monster, the reader is left to determine his guilt or innocence as a number of troubled youth/criminals testify against Steve. His own worries and thoughts are intertwined as the court case comes to its conclusion. ( )
  skipstern | Jul 11, 2021 |
diverse teen fiction (before there was even really diverse teen fiction; racial profiling of black teen who happened to be near a crime scene)
This has long been a favorite among students who know it, so I thought I'd (finally) pick it up.
It's written as a screenplay, so I didn't finish it, or even get very far in it, but this is probably a plus for a lot of kids who want the pages to move quickly. ( )
  reader1009 | Jul 3, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 343 (next | show all)
This book was good in my opinion. There were a lot of comments on the way the book was written, but I personally enjoyed it. It was a unique format and well written. The fact that he spent lots of time in prison helps make his story seem more real.
added by m.marie.g | editMSU AdolLit, Michelle Green
 

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Walter Dean Myersprimary authorall editionscalculated
Myers, ChristopherIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
To John Brendel for his long friendship
First words
The best time to cry is at night, when the lights are out and someone is being beaten up and screaming for help.
Quotations
I think I finally understand why there are so many fights. In here all you have going for you is the little surface stuff, how people look at you and what they say.

I am so scared. My heart is beating like crazy and I am having trouble breathing.


I want to know who I am.

...what did she see that caused her to turn away?"
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While on trial as an accomplice to a murder, sixteen-year-old Steve Harmon records his experiences in prison and in the courtroom in the form of a film script as he tries to come to terms with the course his life has taken.

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Average: (3.73)
0.5 6
1 18
1.5 7
2 49
2.5 19
3 257
3.5 65
4 369
4.5 35
5 208

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