All member reviews for Monster

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Common Sense Media says

Provocative book about teen on trial for murder.

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Quality(i)

 

Users say

(out of 33 reviews)
AGE
13
QUALITY
 
Review this title!
Parent Written byconservative mother June 3, 2011
AGE
18
QUALITY
 

Excerpts from the book, not for my 8th grader.

Questionable Content: Excerpts PAGE: 36-37 ZINZI (A male child) “These guys were…sexually harassing me, sir.” BRIGGS “Sexually harassing? Were they calling you a sissy? What does sexually harass mean to you?” ZINZI: “They wanted to have sex with me.” BRIGGS: “So to save yourself from being gang raped- Is that what they wanted to do to you?” ZINZI: “Yeah” PAGE: 43 “I’ll get me an Uzi and blow his brains out.” PAGE: 50 “He is smoking a blunt” PAGE: 57 Inside the detention center; “We hear the sounds of fists methodically punching someone … we see two inmates silhouetted, beating a third.” “…and the sounds become those of a sexual attack against the inmate who was beaten.” PAGE: 73 Death Row, death camber; “Open your legs; we have to plug up your butt so you don’t mess yourself as you die.” “Steve’s face grimaces with pain as they put in the plug.” PAGE: 105 “She found out I got another girl pregnant.” PAGE: 107 “You have to fight a guy who’s already in the club to show you got the heart.” “You got to leave your mark on somebody.” PAGE: 121 “They killed a little girl just about 2 months ago and she was just sitting on her stoop.” PAGE: 139 “First I was scared of being hit or raped.” Monster, continued. PAGE: 140 “Everybody in here either talks about sex or hurting somebody.” PAGE: 143 “There was a fight just before lunch and a guy was stabbed in the eye. The guy who was stabbed was screaming, but that didn’t stop the other guy from hitting him more.” PAGE: 149 “King is bleary eyed and smokes a joint as he talks.” PAGE: 203 “I can understand why they take your shoelaces and belt away from you when you’re in jail.” I find this book totally inappropriate for 8th grade, there are so many other books to choose from. I do not want to explain what a gang rape is to my 13 year old.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written bypanda_bear13 April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

I LOVE THIS BOOK.

I have just barely started to read this book. it's right, it does make you have pity for Steve. i do want to continue reading this book. it seems good.
Parent of a 2, 6, and 14 year old Written byadnetn March 1, 2009
AGE
17
QUALITY
 

Outraged and Appauled!

I am outraged and appauled that my son was required to read this book in school. Sexual references are immoral and entirely inappropriate for any reader - much less a high school student. Don't waste your time.
Teen, 13 years old Written bysave_the_tigers! April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

This book is AWESOME!!

I haven't even finished reading this book and I already think it's awesome! Everyone must read this book or they shall be sorry! It's packed with so many interesting comments and events. A definent page-turner!
Teen, 14 years old Written bywoodyactor May 21, 2009
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

this is an amazing bok i am thirteen and i lovedit

ok im not a reader as a matter of fact i realy hate reading but i am an actor iv been in over than 100 plays and i love it because it is like a script so im use to it and i love that i read almost 200 pages in a matter of 40 minutes i loved it it was a little sexual so i think 13 is the starting age to read this book all in all i loved it
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

a must read for peoplewho love suspense and drama

a lit action a little drama but a whole lot of suspense you can't miss
Teen, 14 years old Written byANTONETTE April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 
Teen, 15 years old Written byLena Cantarell December 20, 2011
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

When You Pick It Up You Will Never Let It go

Hi Im A 15 Year Old Girl Name Selena And I Think This Book Can Be For 7th Grader's.
What other families should know
Educational value
Teen, 15 years old Written bykeenay March 8, 2012
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

learn from your mistakes teenagers

i think this a great book that teenager can read to grt there life together
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 14 years old Written byMattyboy292 November 30, 2012
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

I am amazed at what people will do to keep their child in a "perfect" life

I personally see why parents would not want thier kids reading this, but it has a very postive message. Stating that jail is it worth any amount of money. Isnt it a part of the American constitiution that we have the freedom to read what we want, to your parents dicression.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Teen, 16 years old Written byVictoria13wm May 8, 2012
AGE
15
QUALITY
 

monster great

Monster is a very good book. very educational for the young black males.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old January 23, 2015
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Wake up and smell the coffee

1.----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I've seen a lot of parent reviews that say that this isn't appropriate for a 13 year old. I even saw one that claimed the book was 'shallow'. Wake up and smell the coffee, people. Welcome to real life. If your child is in 8th grade, I will guarantee that they have heard this kind of language before. Are there sexual references? Yes. Did that make me and does that continue to make me uncomfortable? Yes. But if you only read things that say the world is perfect, and exactly how you think it is, you will never learn anything. --------------------------------------------------------------------2.The general consensus seems to be that kids love this book for telling it like it is, and I agree. I read this accidentally in 5th grade, not realizing what it was, and loved it. This is a hard book to read. Ultimately, the sun comes out, but you are left uncertain about Steve's innocence. There are references to rape and teenage sex, but it's really no worse than language used in a middle school. I highly recommend this book to strong 5th grade readers and above.
What other families should know
Educational value
Educator and Parent Written byMediaXpert April 13, 2014
AGE
12
QUALITY
 
LEARNING

Tense, Well Written, and Expressive.

THE BOOK: Monster is about 16 year old black Steve Harmon. He is on trial for a murder that he is ALMOST sure he did not commit. It portrays the reality of the American judicial system, and how it mistreats minorities. THE RATING: While this book wasn't exceptional or moving, Walter Dean Myers does a good job with the entire book. It conveys how scared Steve is; the courtroom intensity; and how unpleasant prison is. AGE: Rated PAUSE for 12 and up for violence, blood, disturbing images, and implied sexual content. Some people believe that because this book has mature content, it is not good. And indeed, there is violence, blood, sexual content, and drug material, but it isn't over the top; it's in the context of the story.
What other families should know
Educational value
Too much violence
Written byAnonymous March 26, 2014
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Predictable: with a great message

GENERAL OPINION: I love Walter Dean Myers, and with this book it seems that he has stepped outside of his comfort zone for this one. He usually writes in a casual, humorous way. However, this book is tense and dramatic. It is still a very enjoyable book. It is about 16 year-old Steve, who is black, and is on trial for the murder of a drug store owner. Throughout the book, Steve can't seem to come to a consensus with himself about his guilt/innocence. The whole book (except for Steve's journal) is written as a movie script, which I believe keeps it unbiased. The details are clear in the script, however the details that Steve provides in his journal about himself are murky. This book is a very good discussion starter, especially if you play "jury". ABOUT THE RATING: I think 4 stars is a reasonable rating for this book. It was good, but nothing exceptional. I didn't feel that I was "involved" in the book. It was also predictable. I wouldn't imagine Walter Dean Myers having a negative ending for one of his books. Don't get me wrong though: this book deserves a place on your bookshelf. ABOUT THE AGE RATING: I believe that this book doesn't convey a "great" message, but it does convey a message: and that is the reality of the American justice system, and how it mistreats minorities. This book is iffy for children under 12. Keep in mind the whole book is about a murder trial, and includes detailed descriptions of people dying, getting shot, stabbed, beat, and raped. There are also descriptions of blood that are graphic and somewhat disturbing. However, a young teen should be able to handle this book.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Too much violence
Written byAnonymous March 23, 2014
AGE
13
QUALITY
 
Rated OFF for strong violence and blood, references to people killing another and not being remorseful, and references to violent crime including rape and murder.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence

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