Fri, February 1, 2013

Unwind by Neal Shusterman Review

Unwind book cover

Unwind book cover

Unwind
By Neal Shusterman
Publication date: Nov. 6, 2007
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 335 pages
Source:

Connor, Risa, and Lev are running for their lives.

The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: Life is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child “unwound,” whereby all of the child’s organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn’t technically end. Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to escape and to survive.

— Goodreads.com description

When two of my best friends highly recommended I read Unwind by Neal Schusterman, I was like “What? Who’s heard of that book?” I hadn’t! Not a peep. Well, shoot, where have I been? Because this futuristic thriller, out since 2007, is a darn good book.

Here’s the deal: We’re in a future where if, between 13 and 18, your parents think you’re a “bad kid,” they can choose to have you “unwound.” That means that you are essentially cut up and split up in bits and pieces like a sort of demented system of organ donation. People’s entire arms are transferred, brain tissue, eyeballs, you name it.

Soooo you can imagine that this book is creepy as all get out. And I sort of loved that. So Connor, Risa and Lev are all up for unwinding for very different issues (Connor’s “bad,” Risa’s an orphan and they’re out of funds to care for her, and Lev’s parents are religious zealots who believe in “tithing” a child as a sacrifice of sorts). They all end up on the run together – and you know how I love books about kids on the run!

I definitely had some issues with Schusterman’s writing style (a bit boring in parts, honestly), but I so enjoyed the overall concept and story here that I’ll definitely read on to book two, Unwholly, which came out this year.

Anna Reads young adult book blog

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Posted by: Anna   •   In: dystopian, neal shusterman, science fiction
9

9 Comments

  1. Heidi @ YA Bibliophile said:

    This is one of the most popular books in my LMC. It really grabs my students who don’t love to read. Also, I threaten to have a student unwound at least once a day. Probably should stop that, huh? 🙂

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  2. We Heart YA said:

    ROFL at Heidi’s comment.

    Yeah we have heard tons about this book from other bloggers, just haven’t had a chance to jump on it yet. Heard UNWHOLLY was a pretty good continuation, too.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  3. Julia @ That Hapa Chick said:

    Ummm wow SO DAMN CREEPY. I have heard good things about this book but I still haven’t read it. I definitely need to now! 🙂

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  4. Stormy said:

    This was one of my favorite books I read in 2012. It was so creepy, but it unsettled me most that its creepiness didn’t come from a horror-movie type of feeling. It was something different all together, and even though I was so creeped out I couldn’t help but to continue. I found Unwholly really good too–not *quite* up to the standard that Unwind has set but very, very close.

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  5. Angei said:

    I love love love this book and Unwholly. An amazing series unlike all the other YA books floating around out there!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  6. Tara A. said:

    This was one of my favorite reads from last year. So creepy! I usually don’t notice writing flaws until I re-read a novel, so your comments make me a bit afraid to re-read the story! Maybe I’ll just jump right in to Unwholly and skip the re-read!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  7. Jamie said:

    I’ve seen this one around but honestly had no idea what it was about! Sounds interesting!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  8. Alexa Y. said:

    This sounds so creepy. I can’t imagine being unwound or knowing someone who was – and I think that gives this book the extra creep factor. It does sound fascinating though, in a weird way!

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

  9. Judith said:

    I’ve had this one forever but I never actually dared picking it up haha. It sounds SO creepy! I bought it mostly for the on the run part, which I LOVE. But it does sound interesting, so I might have to pick it up soon 🙂

    [Reply]

    Posted on: Fri, February 1, 2013

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