In this wonderfully moving book, Patrick Ness has taken and developed an idea left unwritten by English writer, Siobhan Dowd, when she died an early death from cancer in 2007. It is an impressive book on all counts, about a young boy, Conor, who is struggling to come to terms with the imminent death of his mother after a long fight with cancer. The book is beautifully presented with eerie black and white illustrations throughout to complement the story, and it leaves the reader feeling immensely saddened and humbled by the beautifully-told story of life and death.
A BBC News item of 5 August 2011 gives Patrick Ness’ own explanation of how the book came about: Patrick Ness: Why I wrote A Monster Calls. The novel has already won a number of awards, and I feel certain that there are more to come.