4 out of 4 stars
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Seth Chambers’ novel, The Different Kinds of Monsters, follows the evolution of a pre-historic beast and a homo sapien one. The main character, Dylan Armitage, is the unfortunate inheritor of a blood-line linked to dysfunction and an Allosaurus dinosaur. Dylan’s fascination with dinosaurs at a young age led him to believe that the Allosaurus named Emily, who mysteriously went wherever he went, was his friend. As he grows older, he begins to realize that his Jurassic guardian angel of childhood is more predator than protector. Emily is more than just a collection of bones in a museum.
The book is not always the easiest to read because of the dark themes that populate the narrative, but it is well worth it. Seth Chambers makes neglect, abuse, death, and sexual deviancy, the main themes of this novel. The author makes it perfectly clear that the monsters of this world come in all shapes, sizes, and species. The Different Kinds of Monsters is not a book without humor though and makes sure to add enough comic relief for the reader to get through it.
The book is sliced into three different narratives that interchange throughout the novel. The first is Dylan’s present-day narrative, the second is Dylan’s past narrative, and the third belongs to Emily. I never thought I would enjoy a dinosaur’s first-person narrative as much as I did. All three storylines are equally interesting, something I didn’t think possible when I discovered Emily had pages of her own thoughts in the book. It’s also commendable how fleshed-out the supporting characters are. None of the characters in the book are cliché or boring, but all have their demons.
I would give this book a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. It was gritty without trying too hard, fascinating from start to finish, and there were very few grammatical errors. The book is difficult to put down. The concept of the story is just as unique as the characters.
I would recommend this book to adult readers who enjoy fictional works. If you couldn’t tell by the description of subject matters approached in the book, it is not child-friendly. The book isn’t littered with expletives, but there are quite enough that I wouldn’t recommend letting a young reader 'have a go at it'. It is also a good read for science fiction/fantasy readers; this book is a credit to the genre.
The Different Kinds Of Monsters
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