Review Blog

Feb 01 2016

This Broken Wondrous World by Jon Skovron

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Man Made Boy bk 2. Allen & Unwin, 2015. ISBN: 9781743315972
(Age: 15+) After getting attacked by a myriad of monsters, taking down a psychotic artificial intelligence unit, and basically saving New York, seventeen-year-old Boy - the son of Frankenstein's monster - is looking for some downtime. With the advice of his father, Boy goes to live in Switzerland with the human descendants of Dr Frankenstein, hoping to attend college and live a normal life - or at least as normal as you can get for the child of a literal monster.
What he doesn't expect is to be contacted by the infamous Dr Moreau - long ago banished to a secret island - and asked to fight alongside his fellow monsters to help overthrow the human race. With a violent war escalating and Moreau's forces growing stronger, Boy will have to decide which side he's on - before it's too late.
Whereas Man Made Boy drew obvious inspiration from the works of Mary Shelley with Boy's character, in This Broken Wondrous World there is a noticeable H. G. Wells influence. As well as the characters of the Invisible Man and Doctor Moreau, the story itself reads vaguely like a Wells novel, from the descriptions of fearsome monsters, to the sense that it is much more of a character study than an action novel, as one might expect. While this does make it an intriguing read since the story focuses on the son of Frankenstein's monster, it is also one of its major flaws.
The character of Boy, while an interesting protagonist, is never really well developed or flawed enough for him to be relatable on a deeper level, and since the story is told through his perspective, it makes for an occasionally slow read. This is most noticeable in the first part of the book where he is living in Switzerland and attending college, which drags slightly despite it being quite well written. It is only when Dr Moreau actually appears in the story - almost halfway through the book - that the story really picks up the pace and becomes a truly engaging read.
This Broken Wondrous World is an enjoyable, if ultimately flawed read.
Rebecca Adams (university student)

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