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  • Beast
  • Customer reviews

on 2 March 2014
Read mostly all of Kennen's book and this was the first book I read that Iactually wanted to read, (not like at school when the teacher gives you a book and you pretend to read it) I couldn't put this book down, I kept wanting to know what happened . Great book in my opinion and recommend it to all. Even tried to get some of my friends to read it.
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on 24 October 2013
I think the ending on the book wasn't that good I think Stephen and Carol should have got together and he could stay at the Reynolds. Then it goes to the future a bit and they had children. I also think someone should of died from the crocodile it would make more suspense.
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on 16 September 2013
A brilliant book that you can't stop reading it's exiting from the very first page! Love the book keep up the good work! :)
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on 11 May 2011
I think that Beast has a good amount of social realism - the dad is a good portrayal for example, but I found the whole Beast thing unfeasible - the thermal currents just aren't enough to sustain such a creature. I was going to say 'but it IS a kids book', but it isn't in the sense that the protagonist is a 17 yo who has not had a sheltered life.

My main problem with it is that there are plenty of descriptive passages, which should create a vivid image of the scene, but do not. I did not get a strong image of any of the characters, the scenes at the reservoir etc, and this is a sign of poor writing. I think that the writer should maybe concentrate on gritty social realism, which might be more of a strength.

My 11 nearly 12 yo has chosen it, and I did think a few times that it is a bit old for him (though I must admit I can't even remember the swearing!), but if he is engaged by it I do not care because it is a challenge to get him to read anything except Wimpy Kid.

I would recommend it for the social realism aspect - it does not have a bleeding heart liberal or give 'em a good thrashing stance - it just 'tells it like it is', which is reassuring for the child reader who has a far from ideal family.
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on 5 September 2007
If you like the Sci-fi channel offered by your local cable company, you will want to read BEAST by Ally Kennen. Its mysterious beginning will grab your attention, and the rest of the book will have you on the edge of your seat.

Stephen has been living in foster homes for years. The family he has been with the past four years hasn't been half bad, but he's reached the age limit for foster care and is about to be sent packing. He's got to get packed, find a decent job, and if that's not enough, he needs to take care of a "little" problem he's been dealing with for years.

It's the Beast - a twelve-foot crocodile he's raised from a baby. His father gave it to him six years ago for his birthday. No one knows the thing is still alive. Stephen has been keeping it in a watery cage near the local reservoir. Now that he is leaving his foster home, he's got to do something with the Beast. Its cage is becoming dangerously unsafe and finding food is an increasing problem. What can he do? Should he let someone else know about the creature? Can anyone else even help?

Kennen's early chapters leave room for speculation that soon change to a frantic, desperate tone. BEAST contains the stuff of nightmares and is sure to entertain even the most reluctant reader.

Reviewed by: Sally Kruger, aka "Readingjunky"
3 people found this helpful
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on 14 November 2006
I fell in love with Beast's narrator on the first page when he lists all the bad things he's done. Most of these, which have led to him being "in care", are pretty minor but two are not - and one might kill him. This is the existence of the monster growing in the marsh, which he must feed. Each week it grows stronger, and more likely to break out of its cage....

The monster is very real (and an urban legedn) but also a metaphor for Stephen himself. Is he going to make a future, or become a crook like his father? How can he atone for his involvement in his brother's death? What is he going to do to his foster-sister?

The author apparently grew up with foster children, and it shows. If you're the kind of reader who gets shocked by a few swear-words, don't bother. But if you want a wonderful, well-written, realistic, seat-of-the-pants thriller about a teenager, this is it.
9 people found this helpful
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on 30 July 2006
Hi there. The last reviewer, Harver, gave this book one star because it was too mature for his/her son. I don't see how this is a reason to slate a book. Beast is a Young Adult novel and the protagonist is 17 years old. Rate it on the writing not the fact that someone too young for it managed to get their hands on it. I guarantee they hear worse in the playground anyway.

Beast has an intense stream of conciousness feel and Stephen is a very likeable narrator despite law-breaking tendencies. I enjoyed it very much.
23 people found this helpful
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on 2 July 2006
The author has created an excellent story which combines suspense and tension with a down to earth lead character who is easy to empathise with. The language used is simple but charming, for example she likened the grassy bit in the middle of a country road to a mohican haircut. These little things tickled me! It had substance too. Beast is aimed, I should think, at a teenage market, but that shouldn't put adults off buying this. I've enjoyed all the Harry Potter books and I'm 32!
11 people found this helpful
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on 19 March 2017
This is a compelling and well written novel. My only sadness is that I am already missing the characters that I grew to love!
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on 2 July 2006
This is a great book! It is an easy read but enthralling. Ally Kennen keeps the reader on beastie hooks! The beasts true nature is tantalisingly revealed little by little. By the time you know what it is you can't put the book down because you're so into it! A+
15 people found this helpful
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