Title: The Monster Within
Author: Kelly Hashway
Series: The Monster Within #1
Release Date: June 17th 2014
Age Group: Young Adult
The moment seventeen-year-old Samantha Thompson crawls out of her grave, her second chance at life begins. She died of cancer with her long-time boyfriend, Ethan, by her side–a completely unfair shot at life.
But Ethan found a way to bring her back, like he promised he would. Only Sam came back wrong.
She’s now a monster that drains others’ lives to survive. And after she kills, she’s tortured by visions—glimpses into her victims would-have-been futures had she not killed them. Barely able to live with herself and trying to make things right, Sam ends up a pawn in a vicious game of payback within the local coven of witches.
But when the game reveals what Ethan had to do to save Sam, she must make a choice that will change all their lives forever.
I requested a review copy of The Monster Within based upon its synopsis, but I was doubtful about the story after reading the first chapter. I think the fact that Sam emerges from a coffin four days after her death, is meant to add suspense, but I found the whole scene ridiculously funny! Then Sam even agrees to living in an abandoned cottage in the middle of nowhere, with the obsessed boyfriend who has reanimated her. I think I would be running in the opposite direction!
The Monster Within is supposed to be loosely based on Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and there are enough references to Robert Louis Stevenson’s story for this to be the case, but I was unable to picture Sam as anything but a ‘Walking Dead’-type Zombie.
I finished The Monster Within hoping that Kelly Hashway would shock me, but instead I found that the story’s ending was predictable.
Kelly Hashway is especially talented at using detailed description to build atmosphere and I think there are many Young Adult readers who will enjoy The Monster Within’s combination of paranormal, mystery, magic and romance.