In 1888 New England, Will Henry is an orphaned twelve-year-old apprentice to Dr. Pellinore Warthrop, a scientist - specifically, a monstrumologist who studies and hunts monsters. They have recently discovered a pod of Anthropophagi, terrifying man-eating creatures indigenous to Africa. Taller than humans, these headless monsters have jaws like sharks and can leap incredible distances. Their presence in the United States baffles Dr. Warthrop, but he sets out to discover their means of arrival and to destroy them before they wreak havoc on the population.
This book has mystery, adventure, and horror. A word of warning - don't try to eat anything while reading because this book is packed with gruesome details and descriptions that may make you lose your appetite. The vivid descriptions make the story come alive, and the characters and their relationships are fascinating. I found myself pondering ethical questions in the midst of the action as well. I really enjoyed the language in the book, and it created the same feeling I get when I read Edgar Allan Poe's writing. The Monstrumologistis a Printz Honor book this year (for excellence in YA literature), and it is well deserving of that title. It is appealing to both young adults and adults. It is horror at its finest! Luckily, we can look forward to a second and third book in the series - the second book,The Curse of the Wendigo, is coming this fall.
This review is cross-posted on goodreads and my library's blog.