The Beast is an Animal by Peternell van Arsdale

“The beast is an animal
Hear it scratch upon your door
It sucks your soul then licks the bowl
And sniffs around for more
The beast is an animal
It has a pointy chin
It eats you while you sleep at night
Leaves nothing but your skin!


So, first of all, this book doesn’t really have a lot to do with the beast. I mean…it’s in it yes, but I’m not sure why it’s the title subject to be honest. Second of all, it drags on and is sort of boring. As a whole, the story is sort of good, but the pitch was just, ZZZZzzzzzz.

So this story follows a little girl named Alys. She’s seen the soul eaters and even the beast and feels a connection with them. After the soul eaters ravage her village leaving just children, she and her fellow survivors take refuge in the next town over. There the new village lives in fear of the soul eaters and Alys grows up knowing she is different, that maybe she is just like the soul eaters that killed her parents and have been killing her friends.

I liked the idea of this gated up village that the children take refuge in. It really gave me the same vibe that M Night Shyamalan’s “The Village” gave me. All these God fearing people keeping close tabs on people, controlling them, shaming Alys for being different – all the while there’s this monster lurking in the woods that only hurt people when they’re misbehaving.

The characters themselves were great too. The problem with the book was just that there was so much time spent creating the world, talking about the characters and building up to this point in the story that ended pretty anti climatically. The whole time we get to hear Alys talk about how she thinks she might be bad, when really she’s just being this good timid little girl.

I am not sure what I was expecting really. I was hoping it would at least have something exciting. Unfortunately, the ending was quite like the beginning and middle – drawn out. By the time I finished, I thought to myself, great, finally!


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