Monday 11 October 2010

Monster High

Monster High by Lisi Harrison (Atom/Little, Brown/Hachette)

PB RRP $16.99
ISBN 978-1-90741-063-5
Reviewed by Hilary Smillie

Monster High is the first in a humorous, clever series written by New York Times best selling author, Lisi Harrison. The author has teamed with the brand giant, Mattel, who will release Monster High merchandise in April 2011 to coincide with the next instalment.

The story revolves around two teenagers, Frankie Stein, whose grandmother was the Bride of Frankenstein, and Melody Carver. Frankie is the creation of her scientific parents, monsters Victor and Viveka, complete with green skin, batteries, bolts and seams. In a matter of days, Victor will fill her brain to the point where she will act and think as a fifteen-year old girl.

Melody Carver is moving with her family to Salem, Oregon, where she will attend Merston High. Melody’s looks have been enhanced by her plastic surgeon father, primarily to change her very large nose and reduce breathing problems as she suffers from asthma. It was asthma which had stolen her one amazing attribute – the voice of an angel.  Her hopes that the operation will enable her to sing again do not eventuate, but she has a new and very pretty face, and has lost weight. She hates how everyone treats her differently now that she is attractive, and downplays her looks in every way.  

About to attend high school after being schooled at home, Frankie is also determined to be accepted as she is, green skin and all. Her parents warn her she will have to cover her skin with thick makeup (Fierce and Flawless) as they do, to be accepted into normal society, otherwise she will freak out the normies and there would be dire consequences for all monsters or RADS – Regular Attribute Dodgers.  After a disastrous tryout at another school, Frankie quickly discovers her parents are right.

Merston High is where the normies and RADS connect – especially at the Monster Dance. The normies are determined to show they are not afraid of the rumour that monsters are abroad. Once again, Frankie and her RAD friends attempt to bridge the gap between the two groups. It is a spectacular failure. Furthermore, Frankie and Melody find themselves competing for the affections of Jackson, a RAD with Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde personas. Nevertheless, they are equally determined to fight on in the battle for love and universal acceptance.

Lisi Harrison’s fresh twist on romance, teenage angst and the challenge of fitting in has produced a highly entertaining and imaginative, if freaky, read.  It has the hallmark of success.


  1. Great review! Check out my review on!

  2. Hi AmandaRose,

    Thanks for dropping by Buzz Words Books. I'm glad you liked the review. Will check out yours too.

    Best, Vicki


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