Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson is one of the best YA novels I’ve ever read. It’s up there for best novel of all time, too. It’s engrossing, pitch-perfect, and elegantly plotted, and its characters are so real it’s hard to remember that this is fiction, not fact.
Unfortunately, that intensity and reality made this an extremely triggering book for me, and I won’t be doing a normal review of it, even though I loved it.
Here’s the description, from Goodreads:
Monday Charles is missing, and only Claudia seems to notice. Claudia and Monday have always been inseparable—more sisters than friends. So when Monday doesn’t turn up for the first day of school, Claudia’s worried. When she doesn’t show for the second day, or second week, Claudia knows that something is wrong. Monday wouldn’t just leave her to endure tests and bullies alone. Not after last year’s rumors and not with her grades on the line. Now Claudia needs her best—and only—friend more than ever. But Monday’s mother refuses to give Claudia a straight answer, and Monday’s sister April is even less help.
As Claudia digs deeper into her friend’s disappearance, she discovers that no one seems to remember the last time they saw Monday. How can a teenage girl just vanish without anyone noticing that she’s gone?
Triggers in this book include graphic child abuse and general violence, as well as some references to sexual abuse and violence. To a lesser extent this book has triggers for racism and bullying, since a large component of the novel is that the main character, Claudia, who is Black, is not believed by the police or her peers in school.
Obviously, triggers are different for everyone, and sometimes I hesitate to include trigger warnings in my reviews because what throws up red flags for me might be perfectly fine for someone else, and what would bother someone else might not even register for me. But Monday’s Not Coming has so much difficult content that I wanted to give my readers a heads up.
On the brighter side, even if you do find this book traumatic, you might find it cathartic, too. Tiffany D. Jackson is so good at writing about how hard it is to be a teen girl. You can tell how much she cares about teens’ real-life experiences. Many teens have lived through things worse than some adults could ever imagine, and by writing about those things honestly, Tiffany D. Jackson is helping those teens (whether they’re still teens or now-adults, like me) feel seen.
That’s pretty special, especially for the Black girls out there who get much less good representation than white teens and adults like me do.
I really loved this book, despite everything it dredged up for me. As long as it’s safe for you to read, I highly recommend it. ★★★★★
Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson
- publisher: Katherine Tegen Books (an imprint of HarperCollins)
- publication date: May 22, 2018
- length: 448 pages
Books and reviews you might also enjoy:
- Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig
- Sadie by Courtney Summers
- A Room Away from the Wolves by Nova Ren Suma (Goodreads)
I purchased my own copy of Monday’s Not Coming and was in no way compensated for this post.