Here's the summary from Goodreads: Your mother hollers that you’re going to miss the bus. She can see it coming down the street. You don’t stop and hug her and tell her you love her. You don’t thank her for being a good, kind, patient mother. Of course not—you launch yourself down the stairs and make a run for the corner. Only, if it’s the last time you’ll ever see your mother, you sort of start to wish you’d stopped and did those things. Maybe even missed the bus. But the bus was barreling down our street, so I ran. Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong. In Emmy Laybourne’s action-packed debut novel, six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids trapped together in a chain superstore build a refuge for themselves inside. While outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapons spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart.What I Liked: 1) A bunch of kids trapped overnight in a superstore? I was imagining a Super Target as I was reading this. Makes sense in my head. Anyway, there are about a million ways this could go. And the direction this one took was fabulous. Taking charge to take care of young kids who of course wanted their parents when something bad happens is naturally going to cause a lot of drama. I loved the way some of the older kids really took charge. 2) There were some more realistic aspects of this book that I appreciated seeing. Teenagers trapped in a super store? We'd be crazy not to expect them to take advantage of some of the things that they probably didn't need (and definitely didn't need in some cases). I really liked that Miz Laybourne pulled some of that into the story. 3) Lots of action. There was a ton of action in this book, starting from almost the first page. It really drives this story forward, because there is hardly a minute of peace for these poor kids. But as a reader, it's so exciting to not know what's coming from page to page. 4) Dean - the MC. It was interesting to see this character as an MC. Instead of jumping in head first to what was going on, he spent a lot of time held back, observing. So we, in turn, were also playing observer to the mass chaos that was going on. It was refreshing to read it from that point of view.
What I Didn't Like: Confusingly enough, it took me until page 20 to figure out if our MC was a girl or a guy. I even went back to see what I was missing. His name isn't mentioned, for a while.
Overall thoughts: Monument 14 was unlike anything I've read recently. It was action-packed but not exhaustive because our MC was a quiet observer of the action. The story has a great way of keeping a reader interested from page one. I'll be interested to see if the story is going to continue!
My Rating: 4 shots