Formerly 'The Mile Long Bookshelf'

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne

Title: Monument 14
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Published by: Hachette
Publication date: 4th April 2013
Pages: 342
Genres: YA/Post-Apocalyptic/Dystopian
Format: Paperback
Source: Bought.

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

Fourteen kids stranded inside a superstore. Inside they have everything they could ever need. There's junk food and clothes, computer games and books, drugs and alcohol... and without adult supervision they can do whatever they want.

Sounds like fun?

But outside the world is being ripped apart by violent storms and chemicals leaking into the atmosphere that, depending on blood type, leave victims paranoid, violent or dead.

The kids must remain inside, forced to create their own community, unsure if they'll ever be able to leave. Can they stop the world they've created inside from self-destructing too?

Professionalism is going straight out of the window for this review.

I'm not ashamed to admit that the main reason I wanted to read Monument 14 was because it's about kids/teens trapped in a supermarket. That used to be one of my childhood fantasies...imagine the food you could eat, the books you could read, the endless supply of phones and tablets you could play on... Come on. I can't be the only one who thinks that would be an awesome situation to be in. Don't pretend you don't think that would be fun because it totally would be. Hello?! UNSUPERVISED USE OF THE BAKERY AISLE. However, the circumstances for them being trapped in the supermarket were not all fun and games. After a freak hailstorm and several deaths, we're thrown into more action-packed and suspenseful situations as harmful chemicals are released into the atmosphere, and everyone has to try and protect themselves, their new community, and their new 'home.'

I have a theory that this book was written as if it's the main character Dean writing in the journal he took as soon as he entered the store. I could be wrong, maybe I missed something, but that's how it seemed to me, and I think it was implied, too. I'm just saying this because a few people have said they were irritated by the author constantly trying to remind us of things that had happened before as if we couldn't work that out ourselves, but if you think that it was Dean writing the story for his own personal record, it makes more sense that he would write like that. It's conversational. Different to the style of books I usually read, but it really didn't bother me.

Two of the characters I respected most were Dean and Sahalia, because neither of them really conformed to the rules of society, and they were both ridiculed because of it. I especially respected Sahalia and thought of her as a very important character because her want to become considered a 'grown-up' got her into a couple of bad situations, and it spotlighted the pressures young girls feel sometimes to be noticed.

The descriptions in this book, oh my fudge. I just wanted to hug the book. And then I wanted to hug it even more when I discovered the dry sense of humour that Dean had. "There I saw Chloe, freshly bathed, wrapped in a towel, eating fun-size Butterfingers one after another like a chain smoker and watching me like I was her soap opera." I don't know why that made me laugh so much but it did, probably because of the hilarious image it produced in my mind. "I gathered that the girls thought he looked rugged and dangerous. I gathered this because every time he was around they'd twitter and preen in a way that sort of made me hate everyone." It's also very relatable, as you can see from the second quote.

While being funny and exciting, it also made me think. Monument 14 is set in 2024 which is only ten years from now, and it's scarily realistic. I couldn't help but think that the events which happened in the book could easily happen in our lifetime. Surely it wouldn't be that difficult for our government to accidentally release some crazily dangerous chemical into our atmosphere.

I haven't had fun reading a book for a long time. I've read good books, but they're not always fun to read. This, however, certainly was. As soon as I flipped the last page, I grabbed the laptop and ordered the second book. So what if I spent money I didn't yet have, I needed to read the next book. I am so excited to read the second book - thank goodness for Amazon's next day delivery! Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go and let out a stream of capital letters somewhere in the depths of the Internet. I don't want to bore you with my full-fangirl mode here...


  1. Ooh! SOUNDS GOOD! I've heard about Monument 14 somewhere. And it reminds me so much of The Maze Runner and Gone. Great review, btw. I should check this one out. :)

    Cindy @ In This World of Books..

  2. Never heard of this book until now, but oh my gosh, it sounds SO good. I think I might have to invest in this one!

    1. Just to say..I've gone ahead and bought it! I've read a sample and now can't wait for it to arrive!

    2. Ahh, that's awesome! Can't wait to hear what you think! :)

  3. I've been meaning to read this for about a year now but it keeps getting pushed down my TBR pile. I need to read it soon!! ♥

    Through A Cat's Eyes

  4. I had the chance to read this but I didn't because I read a really negative review! It sounds like a really good read because like you it's like my childhood dream to be locked in a supermarket it! It would be so fun...or would it? Anyways your review has boosted my excitement to read it :)

    1. I thought I was the only one! If you read Monument 14 I hope you enjoy it :)

  5. OOOOH! You've made me want to finally pick this up! Haha! I've had this on my TBR since September when I bought it, which is not good... I really wanted to read it but I kind of forgot but you have revived my rainbow of hope! The style of the book sounds interesting since it's different and what can beat a bit of humour? Great review! Rita xx

  6. I've never actually tried reading books similar to Monument 14, there's nothing about them that actually appeal to me. After reading your review on Monument 14 I suddenly have an urge to go buy this book right now, it sounds very interesting! Definitely going on my TBR pile.


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