Book Review: Unwind by Neal Shusterman

I told myself I was going to abstain from buying any new books for awhile so that I could put a dent in my unacceptably enormous to-read pile. HA!

I was successful for perhaps two weeks (ya gotta start somewhere). My SIL gave me Unwind by Neal Shusterman for Christmas (it was a very successful reading related holiday) and I started reading it last week. The moment I finished Unwind I promptly went to my local book store (shout out to the Little Shop of Stories in Decatur, GA!) and bought UnWholly. I did not however realize this was a trilogy and inadvertently committed myself to buying the third book UnSouled as well as an mid-trilogy e-book UnStrung. This is not such a tragic situation as Unwind was awesome/incredible/amazing/insane and I am looking forward to continuing the story of Lev, Risa, and Connor.


Unwind is the story of three teenagers on the run from certain death. But is it actual death or a change in scenery, merely life in a divided state? Rewind! Laying the scene: in the near future, the second civil war has been fought over reproductive rights and the Bill of Life is made law. Abortions are illegal but between the ages of 13 and 18, a child may be unwound. When a child is unwound, they are essentially disassembled with all of >99% of their organs going to different donors. The children are not being sentenced to death, they are living on through others, perhaps many others. Press play! Connor, Risa, and Lev are all the run for very different reasons. The trio’s story lines overlap as their struggle for self preservation becomes increasingly complicated and dangerous.

As the novel continues, we learn more about this society, one in which a woman can abandon her newborn on a stranger’s doorstep, ‘storking’ the baby, which another family must care for by law. The public is also in fear of explosive domestic terrorists called ‘clappers.’ And on! Shusterman has created a detailed dystopian society which kept me on the edge of my seat simultaneously eager and nervous to learn more about this not so foreign world.

The chapter which impacted me the most was #61 from Roland’s POV (the novel’s resident bully/villain/troubled teen), just wow… I was reading on the couch and Mark was waiting for me so we could leave the house and I was just glued to the page, and the cushion for that matter Like I said just wow. You must read because Unwind tells a tale that may very well become a reality.

While I continue to digest and process the events of Unwind, up next is Ready Player One by Ernest Cline.


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