Broken Monsters

Broken Monsters

Book - 2014
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"Scary as hell and hypnotic. I couldn't put it down...I'd grab it if I were you." --Stephen King

A criminal mastermind creates violent tableaus in abandoned Detroit warehouses in Lauren Beukes's new genre-bending novel of suspense.
Detective Gabriella Versado has seen a lot of bodies. But this one is unique even by Detroit's standards: half boy, half deer, somehow fused together. As stranger and more disturbing bodies are discovered, how can the city hold on to a reality that is already tearing at its seams?
If you're Detective Versado's geeky teenage daughter, Layla, you commence a dangerous flirtation with a potential predator online. If you're desperate freelance journalist Jonno, you do whatever it takes to get the exclusive on a horrific story. If you're Thomas Keen, known on the street as TK, you'll do what you can to keep your homeless family safe--and find the monster who is possessed by the dream of violently remaking the world.
If Lauren Beukes's internationally bestselling The Shining Girls was a time-jumping thrill ride through the past, her Broken Monsters is a genre-redefining thriller about broken cities, broken dreams, and broken people trying to put themselves back together again.
Publisher: New York :, Mulholland Books/Little, Brown and Company,, 2014
Edition: First North American edition
ISBN: 9780316216821
Branch Call Number: FIC BEU
Characteristics: 442 pages ; 25 cm


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JohnK_KCMO Dec 08, 2017

Gorgeous prose, a generous variety of compelling characters, and a blend of twisted urban murder mystery with magical realism make this an engrossing read. Highly rewarding. There are a couple of awkward tonal shifts but they don't detract from the overall effect. Think Stephen King & Peter Straub with more lyricism.

AL_LESLEY Nov 16, 2016

A very well written and very imaginative thriller. The author brings her subjects to life which in this gritty, dark, horrific tale is sometimes pretty spooky. I missed something along the way I think, some social commentary to pull it all together so despite being very well put together it doesn't get 4 stars from me.

Dec 15, 2015

Just like The Shining Girls, it's propulsive, exciting, and really weird. I found the variety of perspectives really interesting - you don't often get to hear from someone like Layla, the teenage daughter of the detective investigating a series of bizarre murders, or TK, who is both black, homeless, and incredibly intelligent and capable. Although the plotting was a bit pat, with all the threads drawing together a little too neatly at the end for my particular taste, I couldn't help but devour this book.

Sep 16, 2015

Too fragmented for me.

adasilva7 Jun 25, 2015

This novel is captivating from beginning to end, I couldn't stop reading it. I'd recommend this title to anyone interested in a unique take on the classic thriller.

Jun 10, 2015

I found this lacking. She doesn't adequately explain why Bloom is suddenly possessed with some 'dream' and needs to kill people. I didn't really enjoy the paranormal aspects - especially since they weren't really examined in any depth. That being said, I enjoyed her writing, and I really liked some of the characters. It just didn't live up to its potential.

Apr 06, 2015

A very dark, complex and disturbing novel with many twists and turns. Only for those who like Dr. Lecter and similar

I read "Shining girls" and liked it so I grabbed this as soon as I could. Meh, maybe I had high expectations, maybe if she did away with the Jonno character, I might have been happier, but to be honest, I kept saying to myself "This feels like an episode of "Hannibal" -- I've seen this before but better." Sorry, Beukes, I wanted to like it, but you'll have to do better next time. Also, look into writing better endings. And somebody blacklist the voice actor who played Jonno. It made a boring character into an irritating, stupid, want-to-skip-this-chapter character.

Dec 24, 2014

if i'd have noticed it was by her, I wouldn't have bothered. Shining girls was idiotic. This started interesting, but ended up idiotic too

Dec 19, 2014

Detroit is an iconic setting for this sort of story. With such a backdrop, Beukes goes big with her dark themes. Her characters are vivid and luminous in their personal anguish, and at times I thought their personal demons were actually where the true horror of this story lies.

Is this book scary? What is fear but a manipulation of our expectations, heightened anticipation. As I read, I didn't really have that sensation, though. What I did experience was something more quietly unsettling. Sure there are a few nail-biting moments centered around Layla, as she circles ever closer to the killer (will the killer be drawn to her?). But otherwise, the gritty social satire threaded throughout the book elbows out the horror for me.

Ultimately, the narrative drive in Broken Monsters isn't about finding out who is doing the deranged killings—we're introduced to the serial killer early on—but why. Beukes explores the psychological basis for this depravity through the cracks of society.

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