Monoceros Paperback – Apr 15 2011
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'One of the most imaginative, quirky and emotionally devastating novels I’ve read in a long while.' — Globe and Mail
'Spellbinding and playful ... A stylistic tour de force.' — National Post
'Mayr has crafted a thoughtful tale examining how the death of one person can have ripple effects even on people who didn't know the deceased. Effectively portraying a range of ages, emotions, genders, and motivations, Mayr quickly engages readers.' — Publishers Weekly
'Bold and assured ... a complex and moving novel deserving of a large and attentive readership.' — Quill & Quire
About the Author
Suzette Mayr is the author of three previous novels: Moon Honey , The Widows and Venous Hum . The Widows was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book in the Canada-Caribbean region, and has been translated into German. Moon Honey was shortlisted for the Writers' Guild of Alberta's Best First Book and Best Novel Awards. Suzette Mayrlives and works in Calgary.
Top Customer Reviews
The novel's plot progresses steadily even though most of the action is emotional. Readers witness the characters grieve or refuse to grieve, care or refuse to care, and examine their lives from glass houses. Mayr deftly offers compelling detail both in convincing teen-speak and in the words of burnt-out teachers trying to make it through each day.
Unfortunately, the low point of the book comes at the final chapter, where unicorns appear on the scene in a sudden switch to magical realism; the abrupt shift throws the rest of the novel into upheaval. But, at the same time, it may be a fitting way to bring us to the end of a story that will inevitably endure as the fallout from the dead boy's choice reverberates in the psyches of those he left behind.
I laughed and cried, sometimes at the same time. I think this is a must read for anyone who has, or has been, a teenager.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
A teen's suicide triggers a community to reflect on its actions. Students, faculty, and family members "tell" their own side of the story, while trying to make sense of a tragedy that could have been avoided.
Monoceros is definitely one of the most interesting books I have read in 2012. It is an unexpected and unique take on the aftermath of a homosexual teen's suicide, as told by the students, staff, and family he left behind. At first, I couldn't get past the sentence and grammatical structure of the text, it was choppy and strangely formatted. I did not enjoy the repetitiveness, nor did I favor the total lack of quotation marks. The dashes used made it difficult to determine which individuals were speaking during conversations. I did however appreciate the depth and personalities of the colorful cast of characters; especially Max, Crepe Suzette, Faraday, and Walter. The story-line was well-constructed, honest, and full of emotion. Even though each of the characters only had a small section written in their own perspective, I felt that the mix of thoughts and conversations kept the reader intrigued and sympathetic. I eventually got over most of the punctuation problems, but I still found them annoying. The only other problem I had was with the ending, I found it confusing and unnecessary. The writing itself was intricate, but I couldn't pinpoint the proposed audience. Overall, a strange, yet unique read; still unsure about the unicorn aspect... (no spoilers).
Rating: Bounty's Out (3/5)
* I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.