IMG_0120What’s the book about?

Broken Monsters finds us in Detroit where there has been an unpleasant and unusual murder (young boy mutilated and found in the company of animal remains, let’s not go into the gruesome details here) and we follow motley group of characters (the lead detective, her daughter, some homeless people, a local artist, a journalist and his girlfriend) who all clearly have some involvement with the death. A death which is of course the first but not the last.

Why did I want to read it.

I loved The Shining Girls (which I read last year and reviewed here) and was keen to read Lauren Beukes next novel to see if it was as good. And it is a serial killer novel so therefore falls into crime month territory.

What did I think of it?

Gosh this is grim. The Detroit location is a grubby and effective backdrop to a nasty set of murders with a side order of mental breakdown, poverty, journalists on the make with no thought to the consequences and the perils of social media for young people. You know that every one of the characters are going to get sucked into the story but not exactly how. I enjoyed it in the way that I enjoy quite a lot of horror that I read and at least one reviewer I’ve seen makes a link to the work of Stephen King which I don’t entirely agree with but can see where it’s come from (and isn’t necessarily a bad thing as I love King) but it’s worth saying that Beukes style is very much her own and I read the last third in one major chunk.

I think I still prefer The Shining Girls, which was so astonishing, but this is a worthy successor.

Oh, but it’s dark so be warned.