All member reviews for Monster

About our rating system

  • 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.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

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

Find out more

Common Sense Media says

Provocative book about teen on trial for murder.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

Users say

(out of 33 reviews)
AGE
13
QUALITY
 
Review this title!
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, 15 years old Written bycharmedone April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 
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
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
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
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
Adult Written byJosieKiper April 7, 2011
AGE
14
QUALITY
 

Good, but not fully appropriate for younger teens.

It was a decently good book, but some of the side topics may not be age appropriate if you are under 14 or 15. Being as how the maturity level of teenagers has risen through out the years, 13 may be acceptable too. The amount of swearing is very low, although some words are a little bit rude or harsh. I personally think the book was pretty good, and I would reccomend it to someone between the ages of fourteen and twenty.
What other families should know
Great messages
Parent of a 15 year old Written byallihamp March 8, 2011
AGE
15
QUALITY
 
i think the book was good it teaches you a lesson about robbing a store that its not a good idea
What other families should know
Great messages
Adult Written byt.r.reader December 6, 2010
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Such a shame to rate this as "iffy"

If there's an infrequent use of "mild to moderate" language and implicit or passing references to sexual activity, I'm unsure why this book would be rated so highly for sex and language. Violence? Of course violence is part of "Monster;" the story is about a young teenager on trial for aiding in a robbery which results in murder. I rate this as appropriate for ages 13 and up not for any "controversial content," but because Myer weaves such a complex story, following the protagonist, Steve, as he struggles to understand how he's come to this point, his overwhelming trial, his dreams in life. Readers are left to figure out Steve's guilt or innocence; Steve himself must grapple with who he is versus what others see him as. Though these questions are never explicitly asked, Myers' story encourages readers to consider how we view young, urban black men; how these perceptions are internalized; justice; how a life (potentially) derails. "Monster" is a quick read that will draw in reluctant readers with its mixed journal and screenplay-style narrative, but be warned: it not only entertains (because let's face it: it's just a darn good story), it also gets kids and teens to think.
What other families should know
Educational value
Kid, 10 years old June 19, 2010
AGE
13
QUALITY
 
best book ever!!!!!!!!!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Great messages
Teen, 14 years old Written byPufferpuff September 5, 2009
AGE
13
QUALITY
 
I love it:) It makes me realize da true world.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
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.
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 byANTONETTE April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Pages