Real Monsters Read Õ 5

review Real Monsters

Real Monsters Read Õ 5 ✓ 'From the scorched desert to the marital bedroom Real Monsters is a memorable and moving portrait of the futility of 21st century conflict' Benjamin Myers author of Pig Iron and BeastingsWe are surrounded by monsters The lines are now so blurred no one knows who the real enemy is anyReeling from the terrorist attack that killed herA stable life is shattered when Danny is called to serve in war overseasDanny is lost in the desert Most of his unit is dead – victims it would seem of a brutal ambush With their euipment destroyed and food running out the small band of men stumble through the sand and shadows desperate to find salvation As their hope fades they begin to turn on each other until finally it becomes clear that only the truly monstrous will surviveBrown creates a compelling and gr. Disclaimer While I aim to be unbiased I received a copy of this for free to reviewThe copy of Real Monsters that I received was an uncorrected proof but it was already of a higher standard than most manuscripts and whilst I did pick up on a couple of typos here and there they didn’t detract from the storyLoosely speaking Real Monsters is a sort of political allegory which takes a look at our modern wars with extremists and reflects it as if you’re looking at it through one of those weird mirrors that you get at carnivals It’s also a love story presented in the format of two first person narratives one of which comes in the form of a letter from a soldier to his loved one back homeEventually the two worlds collide with serious conseuences – Brown is making a statement on war here but I’m not sure what it actually is The beauty is that it forces you to decide for yourself

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'From the scorched desert to the marital bedroom Real Monsters is a memorable and moving portrait of the futility of 21st century conflict' Benjamin Myers author of Pig Iron and BeastingsWe are surrounded by monsters The lines are now so blurred no one knows who the real enemy is anyReeling from the terrorist attack that killed her father Lorna lurches through an inebriated adolescence until she finds redemption in a young soldier called Danny However her dream of. The title is from a Nietzsche uote and accordingly the soul of this novel very much has to do with who the real monsters are Nominally in the story they are the unnamed foes responsible for a deadly terrorist act which resulted in a nearly 14 year war Brown leaves it cleverly anonymous and all of the locations are unspecified mainly a generic Western city and a generic desert setting Kind of a genius way to write a commentary of the continuing WestEast geopolitical conflict without having to entangle the plot in all the specifics This way is seems easier to concentrate on what’s really at stake which is an ugly demoralizing deleterious effect of war on a person The story is told through dual alternating narratives addressed to a child by both of his parents a father fighting overseas and a mother left alone to reevaluate her views about the war The former plot line becomes increasingly terrifying as the latter turns soberingly tragic This is by no means an easy read but then again with this subject matter it shouldn’t be in fact how discomforting it is testifies to how effective it is just as how compelling it is despite all that testifies to Brown’s talent as an author This was his debut too very awesome I’ve now read all three of his books to date in reversed chronological order and they were all very different and all very good Brown has certainly matured as a writer in some respects but this one makes it obvious that he was good straight out of the gate Enjoyable isn’t uite the right word to describe this reading experience in particular because it seems to imply certain lightness so maybe gratifying is appropriate Or maybe just something like I’m glad this book exists and I’m glad to have read it Thanks Netgalley

Liam Brown ¼ 5 characters

Real MonstersIpping experience alternating between the soldier and home narrative Cleverly employing letters and uniue voices we are drawn completely into the raw desert while being left with a thought provoking and graphic view of modern warfareWhat Reviewers and Readers Say'Beautifully written smart and punchy' Sam Mills author of The uiddity of Will Self'A memorable and moving portrait of the futility of 21st century conflict' Benjamin Myers author of Pig Iron and Beastings. I sometimes choose books to read for silly reasons Liam Brown's Real Monsters was chosen for a mixture of silly and normal reasons that it is short; that it has a blurb from Benjamin Myers who has written two of my favourite books that I have read this year not of 2018 both published before now; that it was published by Legend Press the publishing house whose anthology 10 Journeys contains my short story 'Angel Wings'; Brown's latest offing 'Wild Life' is meant to be excellent yet I couldn't find it so settled for this; that it has a lovely tactile cover As for the book itself Decent Dual narrative that of husband and wife Danny and Lorna a very young couple who marry up then Danny joins the army Both are posed as letters for their son telling two sides of the same story from a soldier and an army widow perspective Suffice to say that it is daring galling confronting and with a growing sense of alarm madness and ambiguity It targets the war on terror the Western response to insurgencies and global threats both real and imagined it is implied that what they are looking for and fighting aren't so much terrorists but real bona fide monsters with green skin and eight arms which of course we the reader and the wider world within the narrative never see It also looks at the psychological makeup of those who enter the armed forces and the impact on them when facing wartime atrocities Finally it looks at the impact on those who stay at home those who rally and protest and those who lash out at the system All of them are given human virtues vices and flaws and are presented as varying shades of grey throughoutFunnily enough I found Lorna's narrative far engaging even if the outcome of Danny's travails in the desert got extreme and desperate In the end it was a bit of a Palahniuk outro in my opinion twisted nihilistic not much to barrack for but I didn't get the same sense of black tar comedy and entertainment from Brown's novel as I do from most of CP's work Still a bristling opening salvo so I have high hopes that his follow up Wild Life championed as being like an Adult Lord of the Flies inhabited by the homeless takes the good bits here and ups the ante