• The Monstrumologist

  • By: Rick Yancey
  • Narrated by: Steven Boyer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 33 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (710 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Award-winning author Rick Yancey has captivated young adult readers with his popular Alfred Kropp novels, the first of which was named a Best Book for Children by Publishers Weekly and was a finalist for the Carnegie Medal. Now Yancey begins a gripping new series with The Monstrumologist.

Dr. Warthrop is a scientist who tracks and studies real-life monsters. Assisted by his 12-year-old apprentice, Will Henry, Dr. Warthrop discovers a pod of Anthropophagi and launches a hunt to destroy the foul beasts.

©2009 Rick Yancey (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

Critic Reviews

"[The] best horror novel of the year." ( Booklist)

What listeners say about The Monstrumologist

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Reader Be Warned

I came to this book expecting to find an aging scientist who takes in a young boy and through the nature of his science, introduces him to the fact that monsters exist - sort of Indiana Jones meets Night of the Living Dead. It seemed like that would be somewhat entertaining and entertainment was all I was looking for. Other reviewers had compared the author's writing to Lovecraft. I have not read enough Lovecraft to comment on the similarities, but I will say this. I nearly quit the series after reading the first book, not because I was not entertained, for I was. I nearly quit because I found myself profoundly disturbed. Rick Yancy in this series will shine light into dark places, places you cannot see, places you must not see, places you cannot help but look. And you will come to know, to KNOW, that monsters exist. You will find them somewhere between the transcendence of heaven and the piles of dung we live in which, as he shows, are not extremes but points on a circle, a coil if you will, and you will come to see the coil unwind, and the thing, the thing ITSELF, lying one ten-thousandth of an inch beyond your field of vision. Read them. READ them. Read and Marvel! Read and Wonder! Read and Fear! Read and Despair! Your journey begins here.

36 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Excellent naration brought the horror to life

Any additional comments?

I expected more of an adventure book than a horror novel. It was definitely the latter. However, the rich text and excellent narration made this a series I will continue to read.

8 people found this helpful

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One of the most unique stories imaginable

Every element is a spoiler, a real chiller in the style of H.P. Lovecraft. A modern gothic classic.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great for horror fans.

Where does The Monstrumologist rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

8.5

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed this book. I am a huge fan of horror and this had a lot of things I look for in horror stories. It is very well written and very well narrated. If you are not a fan of horror or if you are squeamish this is not a book for you.

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful and terrifying

Blood and guts galore! Absurdly well-written and a nice, fast-paced plot pulls you in and doesn't let go to the very end.

This book has transcended its genre, in my opinion, and reads like a Victorian Classic. Definitely recommended.

Be aware going in, though, that there will be blood. Lots of blood. And other goretastic escapades. Not for the faint of heart.

The narration is spectacular, and well worth listening to.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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can't make up my mind

This is well written by Yancey and well read by Boyer. I have to repeat what a prior reviewer said that this is *definitely* not a youth novel. I think they only mention Yancey's youth novels in the synopsis as a way to convey he's a good writer as evidenced by his awards in that genre. What I can't make up my mind about is whether I will listen to the next book (the end makes it plain there will be more). I'm really interested to know what happens next, but the story can convey such hopelessness throughout that I sometimes had a hard time continuing to listen. There is no doubt as to the "lovecraftian" nature of the book (forboding, dark, horrifying, graphic, gruesome, hopeless).
Guess I'll have to wait and see what the next book holds.

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Not my cup of tea...

It was tedious. I imagine some of it was due to the attempt to write it in 1880s vernacular and description, but there were a great deal of words for not a great deal going on.

It's listed as young adult, but I don't see it - it has some fairly explicit violence and though not a parent I don't think it was appropriate for kids.

I read the blurb for the book on Amazon, and I think I fell into the same trap that Level 26 had for me. Don't read just the good reviews - quite often the truth lies somewhere in between. Then again, maybe I'm being too harsh. A great deal of reviews were from buyers who really enjoyed this book. I really didn't. I think I built it up in my head to be something it isn't. I was really disappointed by it.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoying this but...be warned!

I am 1/2 way through listening to this book and actually enjoying the homage to Lovecraft.

I knew when I bought that it was about monsters. I even did some research and found the author writes both adult and youth books. Not a problem I quite like that genre if it is done well and the author is an excellent writer. This book was published on the youth side of things and so I expected something a little different than what I found.

So far in the 5 hours I have listened (and without giving anything away I hope) I have been through at least 3 heavily gore encrusted scenes, murder, illegal activities, evisceration, sever (and detailed) sepsis and some fairly high end psychosis involving abandonment issues.

In my opinion this is not a book that should be targeted to youth - unless they tend toward wearing a lot of black and too much eyeliner I would recommend parents listen along with their 'young adult'.

You are warned - it is gory - very Lovecraftian, well written - but gory.

19 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Enjoyable and engrossing

I enjoyed this book immensely. I think the writing style coupled with the performers voice is very well done. The story flows so well that the time went by faster than I thought it could.
The gore is not gratuitous, and it’s only a few scenes throughout the story so it’s not quite the gore fest some make it out to be.

Another aspect of this story that I liked is the meta feel too it. It doesn’t feel like a diary entry (which is how it’s portrayed) but more like A Never Ending Story, where we are teleported through time to how the character is experiencing what is happening in real time. You are not someone reading a diary of Will Henry, you ARE Will Henry.

TL DR if you like the sample audio then definitely give this one a go because it’s a great listen.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Sherlock Holmes vs the Cthulhu Mythos

This is “Sherlock Holmes vs the Cthulhu - Mythos of H.P. Lovecraft”.
HOWEVER, instead of the steadfast Doctor Watson, aiding the great detective in his battle against evil is a naive 12 year old boy named Will-Henry.

All the other characters react to Doctor Wanthrop as they would to a fast talking Sherlock Holmes when he’s in his most inhumanly emotionless hyper - intelligent moods. An Mister Spock for the 1800’s.

All the other characters react to Will-Henry as they would to a beautiful Oliver Twist in his most physically adorable and soulfully innocent moments. This Will-Henry seems to be as childishly naive and sometimes plain dumb as he is ridiculously boyishly handsomely beautiful. His physical presence warms everyone’s heart, often even including the cold-hearted doctor.

This creates dramatic misunderstandings that brings the listener a range of entertaining moments from heart-breaking tears to chuckle-ing smirks.

A interesting dynamic-duo to fight the extremely horrific creatures of a dark cosmos, indeed.
Seriously gory, gross and frightening situations rise up like the undead from an overly populated old grave-yard.

My only fault with this audio book is the reader.
The reader’s slightly too young & prim to be the voice of every single character. He ends up giving them all a slight slant towards effeminate properness when what’s needed is a gruff dude like Jeff Bridges who could give it all that heavy manliness that a heroic tale taking place in the 1800’s really needs.

The other problem for the BOOK “Curse of the Wendigo” would be Singing in FRENCH - That’s something this reader simply can NOT do. Painful to hear. He valiantly reads the words in almost French, …but singing? Ouch!

Overall:
This is a wonderful book. “Sherlock Holmes vs the Cthulhu - Mythos of H.P. Lovecraft”. THAT’s a premise I’ve desired to read / listen to for years. Rick Yancey does a pretty darned good job.
BUT… His book gets a tad wordy at times.
I can see how Rick Yancey is seeking to give his work a reflection of the great H.P. Lovecraft’s overly singular verbose style of romantic gothic / eerie pulp tales. However, those are some extremely enormous shoes to fill. Of course, no one could replace such a genius’s style and story ideas. No one. And it seems no one as yet has.
Still, Rick Yancey writes good books.
Thumbs up.
Don’t expect the life changing experience of reading Lovecraft.
Yet, you will enjoy it for what it is.

2 people found this helpful