Review #239 // Here There Are Monsters – Amelinda Bérubé

Here There Are MonstersAfter moving across country, Skye decides to remake herself in order to fit in and make friends. While Skye soon finds a group of friends to be with, her sister Deirdre is not so lucky, outcasted both by her classmates, and now her sister, who used to spend all her time with her. When Deirdre goes missing, Skye soon realizes that she’d do anything to get her sister back.

Why this book?: Horror always gets me back into reading when I’ve been dealing with a slump, and now that I’ve graduated once and for all, I have a lot of freetime to fill!

I’ve had this book on my radar for some time now, and was excited when I finally had time to sit down and listen to the audiobook. I hadn’t heard much about this one, but the cover was absolutely stunning and I was really curious on how the book would go based on the summary. I had high hopes, especially because I’ve always struggled with finding good horror books, and I’m always looking for a new favorite. Unfortunately, this is yet another horror novel that fell flat, relying too much on the inherent creepiness of the story and failing to focus on the characters in a character-driven story.

Skye at first seemed like a promising character. I agreed with her choice of wanting to separate herself from her overly reliant and manipulative sister, choosing to take her life back and find people who enjoy her for who she is. The set up for the whole story with Skye was really well done, from the characters’ reactions to Deirdre’s disappearance to the actions they took. I saw a few reviews mention that Skye seemed extremely callous towards Deirdre going missing in the beginning, but to me it seemed realistic since Skye was trying to separate herself from her sister for so long, and just when Skye finally finds something of her own, Deirdre ‘runs off.’ It seems cruel, but with the way the author built up their relationship, it made sense. It all made sense, up until a random turn in the plot in which Skye makes a complete 180 and literally vows to fight apparent demons to get her sister back. After this split in the plot … a lot stopped making sense. It was like a complete different story, going from a disappearance to a bargain with a fae-like creature.

I guess the part that really dissuaded me from finding much more enjoyment in this book was the fact that Skye essentially throws away everything she built for herself for a chance to get her sister back only to be laughed in the face. [Highlight for spoilers]. And that’s how the book ends. Skye throws everything away and her sister laughs in her face because she didn’t think Skye would actually do it, and it turns out that Deirdre was, once again, taking advantage of and manipulating Skye in order to get what she wanted. She didn’t care about Skye or what she wanted. When we finally got past the climax of the book, I just felt cheated. It felt like I read a book of someone going to the extremes for someone they loved and their love just being dumped in the trash. It wasn’t shocking or horrifying or even interesting, it was just … just disappointing. I personally find books that end in a “it was all for nothing” kind of conclusion to just be pointless, because in the end Skye only learned that she hadn’t mattered to the person who mattered the most to her. It’s like a horror movie that ends in everyone dying. What was the point?

Final Rating: ★★★☆☆


This book had a lot of promise, and I was actually enjoying it for a large part of the story. So much of this story ended up being pointless and only served to ruin what Skye built for herself. I feel like the ending was supposed to be a twist away from what many people probably assumed the story was going to be like, but I feel like I would have enjoyed a basic stereotypical story more then what this ended up being.

Would I Recommend?

I feel like there are better books to read if you’re looking for someone going to the ends of the world for a loved one. This one just made the idea depressing.

Here There Are MonstersAdditional Information:

Published: August 6th, 2019

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Page Count: 339

Genre: Horror/Fantasy

Synopsis: via Goodreads

Sixteen-year-old Skye is done playing the knight in shining armor for her insufferable younger sister, Deirdre. Moving across the country seems like the perfect chance to start over.

In their isolated new neighborhood, Skye manages to fit in, but Deirdre withdraws from everyone, becoming fixated on the swampy woods behind their house and building monstrous sculptures out of sticks and bones.

Then Deirdre disappears.

And when something awful comes scratching at Skye’s window in the middle of the night, claiming she’s the only one who can save Deirdre, Skye knows she will stop at nothing to bring her sister home


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