[Book Review] Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Unwind (Unwind, #1)Unwind by Neal Shusterman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Holy shit. I read this book to help me sleep and

I stayed up the whole night reading it.

The concept for me is extremely interesting; send your troubled teens to be Unwound to make use of their parts. You’ll be problem child-less and your kid helped several people by supplying missing limbs, organs, blood! Plus, Unwinding does not kill them. It’s so inherently practical and in this reality, it’s commonly viewed as not killing (since the souls/essence are still present!!), it’s chilling.

The book handles the shifts in POVs well–they’re more than just scenario shifts; the characters are round and developed throughout the story. The only nitpick I have about this is that it was at a steady pace (tonality and description-wise), was rushed somewhere at 75% (it wasn’t just a lot of things happening at once, it was that the author wrote it in a way that was remarkably different from the rest), then slowed down to the steady pace again.

Also interesting to note is that aside from the parents (even most of the sub-characters are round, lemme cry), the adults whose POV were briefly touched in the story all had a strong sense of duty / leading by example. I think it shows that to survive to adulthood (without getting Unwound from the ages of 13-18), you’d have to have that strong sense of duty, right and wrong, assuming your parents aren’t brainwashed by the Unwinding craze.

I am both excited and hesitant to read the 2nd book in the series. Unwind ended beautifully for me; open ended, at the cusp of change, with all of the characters growing and changing and no one getting away scott-free, innocent or not. It reflects on how life changes us all, in ways that are both obvious and not. I’m hesitating because I now have expectations for this series, and the 2nd book might not be as good as the first (although I have seen positive reviews for the succeeding books) and this series was meant to be one book, if the length of release between books is any indication. I’ll put off reading it for now. *_*

(Also, the Admiral. I CALLED IT)


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