Book Reviews

Review: Only a Monster by Vanessa Len

Time traveling will always get me. Seriously. I want all the time traveling books in my hand. Better yet, I will travel in time to get them. So when I read that in Only a Monster, I was hooked. Keep reading this book review to see my full thoughts.


It should have been the perfect summer. Sent to stay with her late mother’s eccentric family in London, sixteen-year-old Joan is determined to enjoy herself. She loves her nerdy job at the historic Holland House, and when her super cute co-worker Nick asks her on a date, it feels like everything is falling into place.

But she soon learns the truth. Her family aren’t just eccentric: they’re monsters, with terrifying, hidden powers. And Nick isn’t just a cute boy: he’s a legendary monster slayer, who will do anything to bring them down.

As she battles Nick, Joan is forced to work with the beautiful and ruthless Aaron Oliver, heir to a monster family that hates her own. She’ll have to embrace her own monstrousness if she is to save herself, and her family. Because in this story . . .

. . . she is not the hero.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

I haven’t stopped being obsessed with Only a Monster since I finished. Let me begin my list of things I loved by letting you all know, the world building magical system of families? I am so invested. I know Len has only scratched the surface of the world and I need more. Secondly, I loved the time traveling, as I mentioned before. It’s such a unique twist on this world building that totally stole my heart. But what I loved the most has to be Joan’s character.

Len centers this magical story about family and sacrifice with identity searching. With how Joan feels torn between being both biracial and also half human half monster. When I put these pieces together my heart exploded. I love how Len uses fantasy as a lens to discuss feeling torn and having to reconcile both pieces. My fantasy loving heart is overjoyed. At the same time, Joan’s character and both the sacrifices she has to make and love for her family is incredibly endearing.

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Only a Monster is thrilling on every level. It’s a story that examines shades of grey in a world of black and white. The last 40% is not only indescribable, but also impossible to put down. Joan’s story merely feeds into a much larger mysterious story that could unravel the very world she’s just beginning to understand. Find Only a Monster on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, & The Book Depository.


Do you have a favorite time travel book?

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