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Pretty Monsters Paperback – 1 Jul 2010

3.9 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Canongate Books; Main edition (1 July 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847677843
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847677846
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 540,718 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Wonderfully odd and original [and] very scary indeed." (Sarah Waters)

"Intoxicating. These stories will come alive, put on zoot suits, and wrestle you to the ground. They want you and you will be theirs." (Alice Sebold)

"Kelly Link is the literary descendant of Jorge Luis Borges and Franz Kafka." (Audrey Niffenegger)

"

Funny, moving, tender, brave and dangerous. She is unique, and should be declared a national
treasure, and possibly surrounded at all times by a cordon of armed marines.

" (Neil Gaiman)

"Link's stories play in a place few writers go, a netherworld between literature and fantasy, Alice Munro and JK Rowling." (Time)

"Has plenty to tangle the imagination and leaves some endings tantalisingly hanging in the dark air." (Daily Mail)

"Against a backdrop of recognisable Americana, anything might happen, and usually does." (The Observer)

"brimming with singular observations and arresting takes on veryday lives, characters and situations...it's a rollercoaster read" (Books for Keeps)

Book Description

Fantastic, fantastical stories from the favourite author of a host of other authors

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What a brilliant writer! Pretty Monsters collects six previously uncollected Kelly Link stories with three reprints ("Magic for Beginners", "The Faery Handbag" and "The Specialist's Hat" - three of her absolute best), chosen for being particularly suitable for a Young Adult audience. Well, I'm twice the age of that audience, but I still loved this book, as I do Link's two other collections (Stranger Things Happen and Magic for Beginners.)

Kelly Link's writing is fresh, lively, witty, funny, laconic, imaginative, strange yet familiar, humanly warm yet tragic as a genuine fairy tale, all wrapped up in a deceptively accessible simplicity. So many of the stories in this volume capture perfectly the feeling of being on the verge of adulthood, the subtleties of friendship, the difficulties of finding yourself, being caught in the world's cruel indifference - all mixed up with aliens, monsters, magical TV shows, werewolves and ghosts.

A genuinely modern writer, and a genuinely unique writer. You can't describe Link's stories, let alone review them. Dive in and buy it!
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By TeensReadToo TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 16 July 2010
Format: Paperback
PRETTY MONSTERS is a collection of nine short stories; all of which were quite interesting. Here is a sentence or two about each story...

1. The Wrong Grave - Miles Sperry decides to dig up his dead girlfriend, Bethany Baldwin, to get back some poetry that he wrote for her after she died and wasn't smart enough to make copies of. When he opens the grave, he has discovered that it is the wrong one. Now he's got some strange dead girl following him around all night.

2. The Wizards of Perfil - This is about a boy named Onion and a girl named Halsa. Onion's parents have died and Halsa's mother is watching after him and the other children. While in the market of Perfil, she sells Onion to someone who says they will take him to the Wizards of Perfil. For some reason, they bring Onion right back and take Halsa instead. Once Halsa is there, she discovers that the Wizards are incredibly vain and super lazy. But there is something that neither Onion or Halsa knows about the wizards.

3. Magic for Beginners - A boy named Jeremy Mars and a few of his friends are obsessed with a show called The Library. Jeremy's mother and father have some problems getting along because Jeremy's father is a writer. When his father puts Jeremy in one of his books and then kills him off, his mother insists that she and Jeremy go to Las Vegas to see the wedding chapel she has inherited from her late sister. But Jeremy is afraid that he'll miss the next spontaneous episode of The Library!

4. The Faery Handbag - Genevieve's grandmother, Zofia, has a mysterious handbag that is apparently a family heirloom and over 200 years old. She never lets the bag out of her sight. Zofia tells Genevieve crazy stories about how a whole little village lives in that bag, and a nasty dog, too.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A collection of nine short stories with a sort of urban fantasy/horror theme, although low key theme horror rather than scare you into changing your pants horror. What they do is make you think about things. Almost all of the stories could be very normal, with a slightly mentally off kilter protagonist, or there could be something else there that you cannot quite see. A couple are straight fantasy, the Wizards of Perfil, being a good fantasy story about wizards that buy children for a nefarious hidden purpose.

All of the stories are well crafted, and they all have a good premise that is well executed. I didn’t feel that any of them were there just to make up the numbers. There was a level of variety about them too, while all slightly other-worldly and on either a fantasy or horror theme, each story was distinct and pursued a different idea.

This was a semi-random purchase for me, I picked it up from an amazon recommendation on a page I was looking at for something else. I enjoyed it as a refreshing introduction to a new author.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
'Pretty Monsters' was a great collection of stories which explored different subject. Each story is different which made for an enjoyable read. My favourite stories were 'The Wrong Grave', which had a good twist at the end, 'Monster', 'The Surfer' and 'Pretty Monsters'.

A great collection of stories.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was really disappointed with this book. The stories started well but just got silly and the endings were rubbish. I gave up halfway through the book as I thought it a waste of my time. Maybe it just wasn't my cup of tea.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kelly Link is a terribly underrated writer. Her delicious and meticulously crafted stories are hard to explain but make you laugh, cry and shudder. The prose are so effortless it seems to defy gravity.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a collection of short stories, which are all different and unique. It took me a while to get used to her style, which is very quirky and matter of factly, but once you got into it you could really enjoy the writing.
The fact that these are short stories does not hinder the process of getting to know the characters. While some stories feel incomplete, the stories are definitely just the right amount to 1)get into the story and feel like you understand what is roughly happening and 2)not to bore you with over descriptive paragraphs.
All wonderful and wacky.
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