Friday, August 21, 2015

Messenger of Fear by Michael Grant Book Review


I remembered my name – Mara. But, standing in that ghostly place, faced with the solemn young man in the black coat with silver skulls for buttons, I could recall nothing else about myself.

And then the games began.

The Messenger sees the darkness in young hearts, and the damage it inflicts upon the world. If they go unpunished, he offers the wicked a game. Win, and they can go free. Lose, and they will live out their greatest fear. 

But what does any of this have to do with Mara? She is about to find out . . 
*A special thanks to the publisher for this review copy*

I can totally see how Michael Grant has written a crap load of books. It's clear this man has some talent, and a bunch of crazy ideas living inside of his head--which I must admit, after reading, Messenger of Fear--I think it's a creepy place.

Messenger of Fear was eery to say the least. It felt like I was reading this book with a shadow sitting over my shoulder. I could be wimpy or just easily scared but this book gave me goosebumps--at least for some parts of this book. Some parts of this book were easier to read than others, while some parts, made me shut my eyes in fear. Mission accomplished I suppose. I'm not really the horror loving girl I used to be, but Messenger of Fear reminded me why I liked it at all, in the first place.

Messenger of Fear is a story about a girl named Mara. At least that is the name she remembers. All she knows is the young man with the black coat, and nothing else. He is the Messenger. He sees the darkness in the hearts of the young. He sees the potential for evil, and it's his job to inflict justice/punishment. They can play a game. A game that will either let them live free, or face their worst fears.

That really does sound kind of like okay, not really all that scary. But it is. Because the game is no tic tac toe, an X and an O won't save you here. The games are far deadlier, scarier, eerier. I think the games were the scariest part for me--without giving anything away, it's not a game you or I would want to play.

I think what makes this novel so genius, was not Grant's obvious innate ability to creep me out, but his genius in creating this plot, this story, these characters. Sure, this is a book about fear, and it's scary, it's spooky. But, there is a major life lesson nestled in between the pages of this book. I think he dabbles with something far more serious than appears at the surface. And I think that's what resonated with me, it made the story real.

I really wound up enjoying this book and I was tempted to call it quits because, well, I was a scaredy cat that didn't want to be frightened. I don't want to scare you guys, because I'm sure it won't be as scary for some. But there's something about it that sat with me in a weird, scary way.

In spite, or in addition to that--I definitely feel like this a worth while read. I never read anything quite like it before, and it deserves credit just for being so unique, in a genre that's sometimes hard to  be. 

I get the complaints about the book but I think it's far better than I imagined but maybe my expectations weren't high. I don't know, but to each his own. I enjoyed it.  Isn't that what truly matters? 


  1. I enjoyed her Gone series. If those books are indication of the kind of writing Messenger of Fear has, then I'll be sure to enjoy it as well. Michael Grant's mind must be a dark, scary place. Lol.

  2. I read the first Gone book a long time ago, and I remember being deeply disturbed but at the same time able to appreciate just how GOOD it was. Sounds like your experience matches up. Great review, thank you for sharing!
    Esty @ Boarding with Books

  3. I'm so glad you liked this! For some reason I had a hard time getting into the story but I think it was just me and that I picked this up at the wrong time.
    Wonderful review and have a great weekend!

  4. Horror!!!!! Even the very word gives me creeps :( :|
    The plot does not sound so scary but going by your post, it scared the hell out of you and gave you, I better stay away from this.
    Nice review though :)

  5. I really enjoyed this too. Horror isn't a genre that I usually read but I'm glad I gave this one a chance as, like you said, it was different from anything else I've read. I like a good creepy story! I've just started reading the next book and I'm hoping it's just as good!

    -- Nicola Reads YA

  6. I've seen this book around, but I haven't read it yet! It seems like a great book, scary or not. You know a book is good when it keeps you up, thinking about it :)
    Great review!
    ~Erika @ Books, Stars, Writing. And Everything In Between.

  7. Hahah I'm surprised this creeped you out! I read this as well, and although I was not expecting the back story of Mara, I still enjoyed it! Do you know if this will be a series??

  8. I usually don't read books that are scary/creepy but not because I avoid them or anything. I am so easily freaked out I am sure this one would do the trick. It sounds really good though - Great review!

  9. This does sound good, although not my typical read. Glad you enjoyed it, I may have to pick it up! ~Pam