Book Review: Little Beasts

Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - by Daniel Brantley

Book Review: Little Beasts by Matthew McGevna.  Publisher: Akashic Books

Children, tree forts, and candy bars, and murder.

Yes. Murder.

These ingredients mix together in the warm summer months to create something far from the feel-good book of the summer.

The first novel by award-winning poet Matthew McGevna, Little Beasts has all the dystopian elements that are taking the world by storm (think Hunger Games)—minus the distant dystopian society.

Because Little Beasts could have happened in your backyard.

Despite the burning story of murder and mayhem, LittleBeasts is not all bite. Its weakest link is a cast of characters that aren’t defined well enough for each to be memorable. As a result, the plot moves well, but I gave up on keeping characters in order. But maybe this is the point. After all, aren’t we all the same? Or at the least those in our social classes tend to fall in line—rich to one side and poor to the other, both acting as proper rich and poor folk.

Don’t let this lack of character development scare you from Little Beasts. All it takes is one or two characters to carry you through to the heartbreaking end—a finale that offers enough hope and redemption to equal the book’s climactic horror.


DPD Takes First Place Honors In Governor’s Challenge

Whitfield County Unveils Fire Station 12 On South Riverbend Road

CDOT Announces Events And Closures For Oct. 17-20


For the second year in a row, the Dalton Police Department is celebrating a win in the annual Governor’s Challenge. The annual competition sponsored by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety ... (click for more)

Ricky Robertson grew up next to the site of Whitfield County’s newest fire station. He still lives two driveways to the south, right next to two more longtime residents, his parents. “We’re ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Department of Transportation announces the following events and closures for Oct. 17-20: Thursday, Oct. 17 Ales on 8th - W 8th Street between Pine Street and Chestnut Street ... (click for more)


Happenings

DPD Takes First Place Honors In Governor’s Challenge

For the second year in a row, the Dalton Police Department is celebrating a win in the annual Governor’s Challenge. The annual competition sponsored by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety honors outstanding achievement in traffic safety education and enforcement. Dalton’s win comes in Category 4, which includes municipal police departments with between 51 and 100 sworn officers. ... (click for more)

Whitfield County Unveils Fire Station 12 On South Riverbend Road

Ricky Robertson grew up next to the site of Whitfield County’s newest fire station. He still lives two driveways to the south, right next to two more longtime residents, his parents. “We’re excited to have the station here,” Mr. Robertson said Friday morning after the grand opening ceremony for Fire Station 12, 2446 S. Riverbend Road. “It’s an asset to the community, and it’ll ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Thurman Says Discipline Real Problem In County Schools; Johnson Says His Focus Is Academic Improvement

County School Board member Rhonda Thurman said Monday that teachers are quitting the county schools because they face attacks from unruly students and they don't get backing from the administration. Supt. Bryan Johnson said, "We absolutely have challenges," but he said he puts his focus on academic improvement. He said a disciplinary committee meeting took two hours, and he would ... (click for more)

Eyewitness Account Given Of Murder Of Tracy Calloway, Though 4 Defendants Tried To Waive Hearing

An expressive witness, general disorder, and a circus-like atmosphere defined a preliminary hearing involving four men accused of the July murder of Tracy Calloway. On July 21, Antonio Watkins, 25; Prandel Reid Jr., 27, Gary Cross, 23, and Jamichael Smith, 26, allegedly drove up to Mr. Calloway’s residence and began shooting. Calloway, who was located in a white car parked in ... (click for more)

Opinion

Would Foreign Teachers Make Better Instructors For Inner-City Students? - And Response

It seems a week doesn't go by, sometimes more in one week, without Roy or someone writing some coded messages denigrating inner-city schools and the students (using another code-hint hint) that attend inner-city schools. Which reminded me of something from decades ago about teachers from foreign countries perhaps making better instructors for inner city students. At least those ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Let’s Start With Truth

By all accounts the public schools in Chattanooga and Hamilton County are far from what the average taxpayer would want them to be. Our schools are our number one priorities, this easily reflected by the fact they now receive over 60 percent of the total county budget -- the most money ever allocated to public education in history -- and the unbridled desire of our booming area ... (click for more)