Author: Emmy Laybourne
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Publication Date: June 5, 2012
Series: Monument 14, book one
Source: Purchased hardcover
About the Book: Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.
Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.
But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.
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.
My Thoughts: This is another book I picked up because of the Fierce Reads tour. I don't know that I would have read it otherwise. I just have so many books and so little time! I'm glad that the tour stop gave me the incentive to read it. I was pleasantly surprised! I got caught up in the story and the pages seemed to fly by.
Monument 14 reminded me of a modern day Lord of the Flies meets the end of the world. We have a group of 14 children, from kindergarten to high school, stuck together and fighting to survive while the world as they know it falls apart. There are questions of leadership and who should "run things" among the older teens. The younger kids are scared and don't really understand the situation. I was interested in the ways the author explored how the different characters coped with what was happening and the different dynamics between them. The various disasters occurring in the "outside world" added to tension and moved the story along.
The physical book itself is also laid out in a way that captured me. The endpapers give the reader a map of the store and the modifications the kids made to it. It looks really cool and gives the reader an idea of the physical space in which the book takes place. Also, in the bottom right hand corner of each page there is printed a record of what day it is (from day 1 to day 12.) Each chapter is given a title. I always feel like I'm getting something extra when chapters are titled :)
Monument 14 was not what I was expecting. It was better! Great for fans of survival stories and stories in which natural disasters change the course of life as we know it!