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.


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