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Monster by Walter Dean Myers

Monster (edition 2001)

by Walter Dean Myers

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4,3963432,106 (3.72)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.
Authors:Walter Dean Myers
Info:Amistad (2001), Paperback, 281 pages
Collections:Your library

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Monster by Walter Dean Myers


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» See also 66 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 342 (next | show all)
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 |
Monster was definitely an interesting read. It was written in script form which I believe fit the narrative well. It covered many deep themes such as racism, violence, crime and struggles. As a reader I felt like I was going on a journey with the main character, feeling empathy and struggle with him. I would have this book available in my future classroom. It can be a difficult read, but at the same time rewarding. ( )
  RoaneRayL | Apr 30, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 342 (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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To John Brendel for his long friendship
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The best time to cry is at night, when the lights are out and someone is being beaten up and screaming for help.
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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