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The Monster on the Road Is Me

J.P. Romney


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Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (12/12/2017)


It starts with the crows. When you see them, you know he’s found you.

Koda Okita is a high school student in modern-day Japan who isn’t very popular. He suffers from narcolepsy and has to wear a watermelon-sized helmet to protect his head in case he falls. But Koda couldn’t care less about his low social standing. He is content with taking long bike rides and hanging out in the convenience store parking lot with his school-dropout friend, Haru.

But when a rash of puzzling deaths sweeps his school, Koda discovers that his narcoleptic naps allow him to steal the thoughts of nearby supernatural beings. He learns that his small town is under threat from a ruthless mountain demon that is hell-bent on vengeance. With the help of a mysterious—and not to mention very cute—classmate, Koda must find a way to take down this demon. But his unstable and overwhelming new abilities seem to have a mind of their own…

J.P. Romney's The Monster on the Road Is Me is a darkly comic debut novel about the unexpected strength we find when we are tested beyond our limits.

Praise For The Monster on the Road Is Me

"Romney's tale of modern-day Japan crossed with Japanese folklore is suffused with abundant humor, as his wisecracking teens navigate situations fraught with dark and dramatic irony. A confident debut that is at once ominous and laugh-out-loud funny." —Kirkus Reviews

"Original writing, unusual villains, and considerable humor make for a fast-paced and creepy adventure that readers will adore." —Miriam DesHarnais, School Library Journal

"The mix of modern Japanese culture and ancient stories and characters is impressive, and Romney balances it all well, keeping unflappable Koda and his sardonic bluster firmly in the center. . . . [a] strong debut novel." —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"[A] refreshing take on the classic good-versus-evil tale." —Booklist

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 9780374316549, 336pp.

Publication Date: August 30, 2016

About the Author

J. P. Romney taught English in the small mountain town of Hidaka through the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. J.P. came to love the culture, beliefs, myths, and customs in Japan. He lives in Pennsylvania, with his wife and two children. The Monster on the Road is Me is his debut novel.