Thursday, June 7, 2012

Review: Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne

Title: Monument 14
Author: Emmy Laybourne site
Format: eARC, 294 pages
Release Date: 6/05/2012
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (Macmillian)
Source: Netgalley
Challenges: Ebook Reading Challenge (hosted by Workaday Reads)

“Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner.

Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus.

But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran.

Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong.

In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.”

Basic Synopsis:
In the year 2024, Dean and his younger brother Alex get on the school bus in Monument, Colorado. Suddenly huge hail rains down on their town and kills many. After a near death experience escaping the bus, the14 surviving kids and their bus driver, Ms. Wooly, flee to a nearby super store. But when Ms. Wooly goes to find help, they end up on their own. Can they survive earthquakes, toxic chemicals, and just plain isolation?

I liked Dean. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but there was something very authentic and human about him that I liked. He just wants to keep his brother safe and get Astrid to notice him. He’s also kind of an underdog of the group, and I’m a sucker for underdogs.

Plot and Story:
There is something indescribably fresh and real about Laybourne’s writing. It was good on the eyes if you know what I mean.  It was very fast paced, the story was always moving. And that’s a good thing for me. I was on the edge of my seat and my heart was actually beating with excitement at all the right parts. Oh, and that action packed, cliff hanger ending. I’m still buzzing about it. I need the sequel, like, NOW! I know I’m kind of all over the place, but there are s many things to like about this book.

I was worried it would be, but Monument 14 isn’t your run of the mill post-apocalyptic. The premise isn’t the most original idea, but it is very well written and the story is quite a ride. If you’re into post-apocalyptic YA, I would definitely recommend Monument 14. I’m giving it 4.5 of 5 stars.


  1. I enjoyed your review. I have been wanting to read this, but am on a semi-hiatus from YA. I am reading a limited number, but I will definitely give this a try when I am ready to go back.

  2. I loved every word! Great characters, authentic dialogue, crazy, terrifying situation. A great choice for teens -- even reluctant readers will get sucked in. I can't wait for the sequel!

  3. I bought this book because I was at an author group signing and she was there, but I don't feel like this book is for me. Thanks for your honest review!