Though I have an ever-growing list of books on my to-read list, sometimes I just like to get out of my zone a bit, try something unexpected, something off the grid. Every time I visit my local library, I head to the Recently Added section and, GASP!, judge all those books by their covers. Yup, I do it. I judge ‘em and I judge ‘em hard. I don’t read the synopsis, I don’t leaf through the pages, I literally look at the cover and, based on that alone, decide whether or not to dive in.
It’s risky, I know. But I limit myself to “judging” only one book at a time. I’ve been lucky in that I’ve finished every book I’ve ever “judged”…though some were more difficult to finish than others. This exercise has introduced me to some very weird books, including:
Only the Animals
Ladies of the Gothics
A Blessing on the Moon
And, once in a while, I get lucky and find something totally unique and interesting. The Boy Who Drew Monsters was one such find.
Traumatized by a drowning accident that happened when he was seven, now 10-year-old Jack Keenan is deathly afraid to venture outdoors. From the inside of his home located in a small coastal town in Maine, Jack spends his time drawing monsters. When those drawings begin to take on a life of their own, no one is safe from the terror they inspire. Jack’s parents, Holly and Tim, along with Jack’s best friend, Nick, all become helplessly entangled in the terror and horror brought on by Jack’s illustrations. Why are these drawings coming to life and causing havoc on Jack and his family? Only Jack knows…
This book had me hooked from page one. Though slow to start, I found myself engrossed in this strange psychological thriller and couldn’t stop reading until I found out the secret behind this crazy plot. I can’t give too much away here, but if you love a good horror story, the ending will send chills down your spine.
After reading The Boy Who Drew Monsters, I did some research to see what other people thought of it. Most die-hard horror/thriller fans found this book mediocre at best, slow to start and not really that engaging…others found it fascinating and original and related it in nature to classic Japanese thriller novels (I also found several reviews that spoil the ending so, reader beware!). However despite its slow progression, I found The Boy Who Drew Monsters an entertaining and exciting read unlike anything I’ve read yet.
Complete with stormy weather, troubled characters, and things that go bump in the night, this book rattled my emotions, playing ever so gently with those unsettling feelings of the unknown.
Looking for a new book to read? Check in every Friday for a “Bee Happy” post, where I share reviews of books I’ve read or other book-themed lists.