There are three important locales in Monster. The most frightening is prison. From the start, Steve wants nothing more than to escape...

(The entire section is 492 words.)

Literary Qualities

That Monster is an unusual novel is obvious from the start. Myers builds the plot around a screenplay that Steve is writing during his...

(The entire section is 154 words.)

Social Sensitivity

Although Monster focuses on moral issues that transcend social issues, it necessarily touches on significant social problems. Miss...

(The entire section is 214 words.)


(Literary Essentials: African American Literature)

Bishop, Rudine Sims. Presenting Walter Dean Myers. Boston: Twayne, 1991. Brief monograph meant to introduce readers to Myers and his work, providing serious analysis of the novels and of young adult literature generally.

Doughty, Terri. “Locating Harry Potter in the ’Boys’ Market.” In The Ivory Tower and Harry Potter: Perspectives on a Literary Phenomenon, edited by Lana A. Whited. Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2002. Compares the gritty—albeit experimental—realism of Monster to the fantasy setting of the Harry Potter novels of J. K. Rowling.

Snodgrass, Mary Ellen. Walter Dean Myers: A Literary Companion. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2006. Extensive study of the author’s life and work, emphasizing the literary analysis of those characteristics of his fiction that are of particular interest to young adult readers.

Walter Dean Myers.” In Writers for Young Adults, edited by Ted Hipple. Vol. 2. New York: Scribner, 1997. Overview of Myers’s career and his place in the young adult canon.

Topics for Discussion

1. Is Steve Harmon a monster?

2. Even though he went into the drugstore, looked around, and went out as he was expected to by...

(The entire section is 430 words.)

Ideas for Reports and Papers

1. How many American shop owners are robbed each year? How many are killed? Are the robbery and murder in Monster typical?

2. How...

(The entire section is 210 words.)

Related Titles / Adaptations

Myers's writings are usually categorized as directed at young African American male readers—an overly narrow assessment of their appeal....

(The entire section is 102 words.)

For Further Reference

Bishop, Rudine Sims. Presenting Walter Dean Myers. Boston: Twayne, 1990. An overview of Myers's life and writings before the 1990s....

(The entire section is 206 words.)