Unwind – Neal Shusterman

Unwind (Unwind, #1)I saw this in a book shop once. One look at the cover and you know it’s going to be interesting. So I read the back, went “Huh, that sounds kinda cool” and left it like that.

Then I got round to reading it.

And I think my entire brain exploded.

AND HOLY FREAKING WAFFLES THIS BOOK IS AMAZING!

AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING

If you can’t imagine a book this amazing, then think of it this way. Take your religious god(s), deity, figure, or person you just think of as plain awesome (if you aren’t religious, let’s go with Chuck Norris). They drenched the book in tears of angel-ninjas and sewed it together with the fabric of the universe, each word whispered in melodious harmonies through the Medusa Cascade (Dr Who references are always appropriate), into the vortex of eternity and bound together in the light of the time continuum, covered in the brightest stars that shine in the depths of creation. (and if that didn’t make any sense, then replace the words with some form of the word awesome. E.g. Awesome awesomed the awesome in awesomes of awesomeness…)

Now that’s over, we can start the summary of the awesometacular book. Go!

Summary

Abortion is illegal. You cannot harm a child until they reach 13, when you can choose to have them ‘unwound’ (basically kill them and use they’re body parts to help other people) which is described as not killing the child exactly, as they live on through other people. Kinda. Unwinding is a common and accepted practice in this society. Connor is chosen to be unwound because he gets into too many fights, Risa isn’t good enough at playing piano in her foster home, and Lev is the 10th child of his family and you have to give away 10% of your possessions to the church. So Lev is a Tithe, one of the children who actually wants to be unwound. And then awesomeness ensues. Pure, amazing, mind-blowing awesomeness.

Cons

I’m only starting with this because it’s going to be short.

Hmmmm…

I have one Con, I think. Maybe 2.

WHY IS THE SEQUEL NOT COMING OUT TOMORROW. WE HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL AUGUST. IT’S KILLING ME.

and the other con….

WHY IS THE MOVIE NOT OUT YET. I WANT TO SEE IT SO BADLY.

Yeah, that’s about it.

Pros

Everything. Absolutely everything. The plot was amazing, it had a breakneck pace, it was so exciting and thrilling. It never let you go for a second. You were sucked into this book and could never stop this amazing journey of the book. The twists and turns were so good, and there were scenes where I was literally panicking and trying to turn the pages as fast as I could so I could find out what happened, and force myself not to read ahead because the suspense was killing me. (You know the bit where Connor talks to the Admiral in the plane. I was freaking out so badly there. I think I could have ripped out half the pages in the book at that point.)

And the characters were all awesome. Lev’s development as a character was really unexpected but really cool to see. He did a 180 turn, but it was an understandable development in his personality. And Roland. Man, that one scene where Roland shows his vulnerable side (you’ll know the part I’m talking about if you’ve read the book. Because that is also the most disturbing part of the book.   Urgh, the brain thing. Urgh. I think I actually shivered when I was reading that.) And Cy-Fy was my favourite character. Definitely. My favourite scene in the whole book is when Cy-Fy asks for forgiveness with the suitcase and the crying and the stolen stuff… I love Cy-Fy. And of course Connor and Risa were awesome. And I really disliked Ariana (I mean, I understand why she did it, and everything, but STILL.THAT… let’s move on before I start using really bad language).

And the entire ethical dilemma that surrounded the entire book that we’re having now. All about not enough organ donnors and overpopulation and so on. I thought it was a really interesting take on this issue which is in tons of debate right now. And all the problems that come with being unwound, like if you get a part of someone else’s brain, or if the other person had asthma. Or the fact that you can sometimes get the donor’s skills (that truck guy doing card tricks. Creepy as hell.)

The writing style was really cool. It switched between characters really well, and it was third person, but from different perspectives, if that makes any sense.

And the end! It wasn’t a cliffhanger like Everlost, but still! And the hand! And Lev!
You know, when I was reading the last few pages of the book, I was getting really upset because the book was ending. I was so annoyed that it was ending. And afterwards I tried to read “The Forest of Hands and Teeth” by Carrie Ryan, which is not a bad book. Just, compared to Unwind which I’d just read, it didn’t match up. I found it quite hard to get through after all the pure awesomeness Unwind threw at me page after page.

And my favourite line ever. “Nice Socks.” Well played, Connor, well played.

Man, this book was a rollercoaster ride of excitement and amazingness.

Quotes

  • “In a perfect world everything would be either black or white, right or wrong, and everyone would know the difference. But this isn’t a perfect world. The problem is people who think it is.”
  • “Roland glares at Connor and Connor glares back. Then he says what he always says at moments like this.
    “Nice socks.”
    Although Roland doesn’t look down right away, it derails him just enough for him to back off. He doesn’t check to see if his socks match until he thinks Connor isn’t looking. And the moment he does, Connor snickers. Small victories are bet­ter than none.”
  • “I’m Switzerland; neutral as can be, and also with great chocolate.”

Overall

Do you even have to ask for a rating? This is one of my favourite books of all time. OF ALL TIME. It might surpass Harry Potter for me, though I don’t know. They’re such different books it’s really too hard to make a comparison. And Harry Potter is connected to my childhood. Every time I reread them I always get all this nostalgia and other gooey stuff. The type of stuff everyone got when they were watching Toy Story 3.

5 shuriken stars. So epic, so amazing, so fantastically awesomely amazing. I really want to just sit here and gush over how amazing it was. This is what convinced me to read Everlost by Neal Shusterman, and what has made him one of my favourite authors.

Advertisements

2 responses to this post.

  1. I think I need to move this title up on my ‘to-read’ list!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: