I am picky about books that are part of a series. Maybe I have a fear of commitment. In general I like books that stand alone. Since I am now reading primarily for myself and not for students, I am allowing myself to be choosy. THIS is the first book of a series that I DO want to follow. One reason I like Monument 14 is that I like the characters. The narrator is honest and self deprecating and you do see him grow through the story. The little kids are endearing even with their faults. The setting is as important as the plot in that it affects everything they are able to do and provides a self contained little world for the youngsters as they deal with the catastrophic events that follow a sudden major climate change. I will avoid divulging the ending, except to say it does tie up loose ends for a conclusion while also making me want to hear the next series of events. I did read with my ears and highly recommend the audio version.