Thursday, April 18, 2013

ARC Review: Club Monstrosity by Jesse Petersen

Title: Club Monstrosity
Series: Monstrosity, Book 1
Author: Jesse Petersen
Publisher: Pocket Star
Length: 233 Pages
Publication Date: April 29, 2013
Available Format: Kindle Edition, eBook
Source: NetGalley
My Rating: ★★★★☆ 
Get it @: Amazon | Goodreads

Book Description:

Natalie’s one of Frankenstein’s creations and works in a New York City morgue. So of course she needs therapy. She and her friends—er, fellow monsters—have formed the world’s most exclusive, most dysfunctional support group. What could go wrong?

Undetected in the modern world and under pressure to stay that way, Natalie Grey, Dracula, Bob the Blob, and others (including the fetching wolfman Alec) meet regularly to talk about the pressures of being infamous in the Big Apple. Topics include how long it’s been since their last sighting, how their “story” creates stereotypes they can’t fulfill, and—gasp—sometimes even their feelings. But when their pervy Invisible Man, Ellis, is killed in a manner reminiscent of the H.G. Wells novel, it’s clear someone’s discovered their existence and is down for some monster busting.

Led by Natalie—and definitely not helped by Hyde’s bloodthirsty tendencies—the members of Monstofelldosis Anonymous band together for security and a little sleuthing. And maybe—maybe—if they don’t end up dead, they’ll end up friends somewhere along the way.

When I requested this book at NetGalley, I did it solely because of its blurb. Who could turn down the chance to see our favorite classical monsters adjust to modern day times? That they feel that they need to have a support group in order to be able to deal with all the changes that come with centuries of human evolution was just the icing on the cake. Based on that premise I was expecting to have a grand time while reading the story; and I’m so glad to say that the novel delivers.

Although the story is mostly mystery and horror, none of the deaths that occur throughout the narration are described as they are happening. No, these occur behind the scenes and we later find out about their gruesomeness alongside the characters. In a story about monsters that is quite a refreshing approach, so my hat tips to Ms. Petersen.

Aside for the obvious conflicts, the story keeps a lightness that is very welcomed. Not to mention that I was smiling like an idiot as I was reading it. The story has a good balance between the comedy, the horror and the humanity of both the characters and their surroundings.

Although the file that I received through NetGalley had a little over 233 pages, the story is addictive enough that it reads pretty quickly.

The characters are as far away from humans as you can imagine. We have Natalie, Frankenstein’s daughter (one of his many creations); Alec, werewolf extraordinaire; Drake, Dracula of course; Dr. Henry, both Jekyll and Hyde; Linda, a swamp monster (but please don’t call her a monster); Bob, the blob; Ellis, the invisible man; Rehu & Kai, your run of the mill dehydrating mummies. And a special appearance of none other than… hmm, nope, won’t spoil it for you. ;D

To be honest, often times I have problems with books that tackle the classical monsters because I usually end up feeling like they weren't truly made justice. I’m happy that this book didn't take that particular turn. The characters might share their monstrous characteristics with their classical counterparts but they are also so removed from their original concept that they avoid the stereotype, which is quite a challenge when you have Dracula walking down New York City while wearing a cape.

There is romance in the story, but there are no overly descriptive sex scenes, but there is a good amount of tension between the main characters. Speaking of the main characters in the story, can I keep Alec for myself? He is such a sweet and hot werewolf. He is perfect for our heroine. Which as Frankenstein’s daughter you’d normally will picture her as some clumsy brute, but she is quite possibly the most ‘normal’ of all the characters. A girl that tries to do the best she can with the circumstances she’s been given. Natalie is my favorite character of the book.

The bottom line, this isn't your average paranormal novel, which is what makes it so brilliant. The characters have their wacky moments but they also show great humanity. This is a book that I definitively will recommend.

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