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I Belong

Review: Invisible Monsters by Joshua McCune

Invisible MonstersTitleInvisible Monsters

AuthorJoshua McCune

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: Talker 25 (Book #2)

Publication Date: April 21, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 400 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062121944 (HarperTeen)

ISBN-13: 9780062121943 (HarperTeen)

Reviewed by: Kaitin


Finally free after spending three months locked in a secret government facility where she was forced to torture and assassinate dragons for the popular television series Kissing Dragons, all Melissa Callahan wants is a quiet recovery. Hiding in an Alaskan cave with fellow escapee Allie (known as Talker 21), Melissa does her best to stay out of the dragon politics. However, when a group of rebels called the Diocletians discovers their hideout and captures Allie, Melissa soon realizes she must finally choose who she’s fighting for—the humans or the dragons. Joshua McCune once again keeps readers on the edge of their seats in this gritty and masterful reimagining of popular dragon fantasy set in a militant future, reminiscent of Paolo Bacigalupi’s Ship Breaker and Ann Aguirre’s Outpost.

Quick & Dirty: Despite some periods of horrible confusion, this gritty, gorgeously written novel kept me on edge.

Opening Sentence: When I asked Colin to teach me how to shoot a gun, I should have considered the consequences.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

I remember, when I read Talker 25, being confused. I remember going along with the novel and hoping that eventually it cleared up for me, and then eventually giving up. Nevertheless I could appreciate the fast paced nature, the endless action scenes, and the incredible writing style that made every page punch you in the gut. There were so many sentences that were simple, brief, choppy, but were rang with so much truth that I could’t help being affected.

Going into this novel I wasn’t sure how I would feel. For one, I was confused by the first book, and I hadn’t read it in over a year. I remembered there was a baby dragon and a telepathic main character who could talk to it. I remember a vicious government facility exploiting her talents. Other than the very vague general details, I remembered nothing. I definitely could have saved myself a lot of confusion by just rereading the first book before starting this one, but unfortunately I didn’t. My own stupid decision to just jump into book two caused a lot of frustration. I thought there would be some sort of recap as the novel went on that clued me into the events of the last book, but I was wrong, and I suffered a couple headaches for it.

Despite sometimes not having an idea of what was happening, I did enjoy the writing style and characters. The main character is going a little mad, but is trying to maintain her slippery grip on reality in order to protect those she loves from the danger they’re in. She’s badass.

“Own or be owned. Dominate or be dominated. Two choices: perish with the weak or flourish with the strong. I sweep a hand at the memories around me and laugh louder. Forget the weak. I am strong. I am powerful.”

See what I mean about the writing style? It’s intense, its powerful, it affected me. Some books have awesome plots and characters and basic, boring writing styles – those are the books that I don’t connect with as much. Others have a writing style that winds its way around your heart with the melodic flow of the sentences. Like Delirium by Oliver. This was one of those books. Even though I had no freaking clue what was going on at a couple points, I still appreciated the words.

Altogether I think that it was a fast paced, heart pounding installment with diverse characters. The depth of each character, even the dragons, is momentous, and I was able to really appreciate each and every one of them. I was confused at certain points but others I could infer what was going on. I couldn’t care less where the romance was, and barely remember the names of the love interests. I was more focused on the immediate issues of war with dragons at hand, and the relationships. Baby, Allie, and Mellisa’s friendship was adorable. Other reviewers absolutely loved the story and had no issues with interpreting what was going on, and I think if I had reread book one first I wouldn’t have either. Anyway, I encourage lovers of the first to try it out!

Notable Scene:

“You’ve been through a lot, Melissa. You need time to recover.”

Recover? I snort.

“What about Baby?” he says. “You’re the only one she has left.”

“She has Grackel . . . ” Fuck, I hate him. Fuck, I love him. “She has you.”

Talker 25 Series:

1. Talker 25

2. Invisible Monsters


FTC Advisory: Greenwillow/HarperTeen provided me with a copy of Invisible Monsters. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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