We open with a few pages from Steve Harmon's notebook. He's in jail awaiting trial on robbery and murder charges. He talks about how scary jail is and how he's going to document his time by writing a screenplay - something he did in classes he took in high school. The book then alternates between Steve's journal and this movie of the trial.
Monster is interesting because Steve is an unreliable narrator. His journal entries don't quite line up with the flashbacks that he put in the movie. In the end, you are unsure of what should happen to him.
It's a good book for students who don't like to read because the format makes it easy to read. The subject matter is also interesting as you get sort of an inside look at a trial as well as an idea of life on the streets.
I'd recommend it to 8th grade students, boys and girls, but especially those who aren't particularly fond of reading.