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Navigating Early
Clare Vanderpool
The Ghosts of Chicago: The Windy City's Most Famous Haunts
Adam Selzer
By the Light of the Moon (Lakeside, #1)
Laila Blake
The Monsters In Your Neighborhood (Monstrosity, #2) - Jesse Petersen When last we met Natalie, Alec, Kai, Drake and Linda, they had discovered the Van Helsings were behind the murders of their fellow monsters. And now the Van Helsings have declared all out war on the monsters of New York City. The family want them dead, and our Monster Group are trying to survive, and at the same time, not be outed.

When a video surfaces on YouTube of a monster attack in a park, the gang are terrified that their existence is about to be known. And Natalie – who long thought herself the last of Frankenstein’s Creatures – thinks she can identify the monster as one of her father’s creatures. Just like her. While she’s dealing the ramifications of that, she also has to deal with her love for Alec the Wolfman, and the dangerous secret he doesn’t know he has.

We’ve got a new monster joining the group! Cthulhu! Or rather, Patrick, if you please. Due to the full deformation of his body, Patrick lives in the sewers, cloaking himself when he has to rise to the surface, hoping he won’t be seen by humans. And we also have the addition of Igor, Frankenstein’s assistant. A small man, he’s had plastic surgery to remove his hump and speaks with a Southern accent. He’s also an interior designer. Cos he’s like, an assistant, ok? And assistants like to help. Which is basically the entire meaning of his existence, to help. :D

Once again, Jesse Petersen has given us a wonderful, witty, fun tale of what it would be like to be a monster living in present day. Trying to hold down a normal job, moving amongst humans without being discovered, just trying to live their lives as normally as they possibly can. And adding social media to the mix, The Monsters in Your Neighborhood has become just that little bit more real. If this were Real Life, if we really did have the monsters like Cthulhu, Dracula, Frankenstein’s Creature, The Wolf Man, living among us, I really do believe social media is where we’d discover them.

Back before YouTube, Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook; back before the internet even (yes kiddies, there really was a time before the Internet) – how did we find out things? We looked up books in the library. We watched the news and heard about things at 6pm at night. Or the next morning when we read the newspaper. We didn’t find out things instantly like we do today. The second you turn on your computer, you are finding out things that have happened since you logged off. You don’t have to wait for the news that night, or the newspaper in the morning. Remember one of the greatest twists of All Time? “Luke, I am your father”. How did you find out about that? If you were extremely unlucky, a friend who had already seen the movie told you. Or perhaps a la Family Guy you heard someone in the line at the movies. But the majority of us found out as we sitting in the cinema, watching it happen. Nowadays, we’d have had that spoiler splashed all over the Net and would know about it a long time before the movie even hit our town.

If Frankenstein’s Creature really was living in New York City, she would have been outed very quickly. When any person who owns a camera and has an Internet connection can upload videos that can go viral immediately, it wouldn’t be much of a secret for very long. And that’s the war that the Van Helsings are fighting against our friendly monsters. Twittering, YouTubeing – they want to out the monsters and have the whole world know they are real. And Natalie is terrified that it will be back to the not-so-good ol’ days of pitchforks and fires and mobs.

Natalie needs to pull the group together to fight the Van Helsings. Plus they haven’t forgotten about Hyde – the psychopathic alter-ego of Jekyll who is roaming around, whereabouts unknown. She also has to find out if there really is another of her father’s creations out there, and if it’s him that is killing.

The ending has a wonderful twist that I loved – nah, not gonna spill here – that has me very excited and looking forward to the next installment in the Club Monstrosity series. Jesse Petersen writes a fast-paced, fun, and very relevant in today’s world, story about a bunch of people (yep, these guys may be “monsters” but they are just like you and me, trying to live their lives in this world) who need to save themselves, and make sure no more humans die.