Many people are labeled as strange or weird just because they are different. This leads to many issues, such as bullying, peer pressure, and feelings of angst and confusion. All these feelings, along with dysfunctional families, are part of our modern reality just as much as global warming and pollution. Erik Daniel Shein and Theresa A. Gates decided to approach these aspects of modern life in a fresh manner, and combined them with fantasy-related elements, myths, and legends, creating an inspiring story of change, pain, and joy.
“The Monsterjunkies: An American Family Odyssey (“Being a Normal Family is a State of Mind”)” is the first book in this series. The novel follows a rather unusual family as its members fight against bullying, abuse, and unjust labeling on one hand, and other difficulties of everyday life (e.g. stress, a parent’s absence, parents/children conflicts, etc) on the other. The father, Talon, is a cryptozoologist who travels a lot and brings home unusual, rare creatures. The mother, Pandora, is the prototype of a great wife and mother. Indigo, the daughter, thinks she should keep secret information about her family and her home. Crow, the son, is more of an outsider, feeling that he has never truly become part of the town in which he grew up.
After Indigo and Crow make some new friends, things change completely for this family. The two teenagers ask for their parents’ permission to invite their friends over, so that they may see their home and all the wonderful things it hides, something which they have never done before. Adventure begins!
“The Monsterjunkies: An American Family Odyssey” tells a touching story about tolerance and acceptance. Erik Daniel Shein and Theresa A. Gates consider that we are all Monsterjunkies, because we wear masks everyday, be it at work, in school, or when we hang out with our friends. We must learn to go beyond the masks and the labels, and see people for who they really are.