Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Review: Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Book: Unwind by Neal Shusterman
Genre: YA Dystopian
Rating: A
For: Fun
From: the library

One day I suddenly realized that this book was a week overdue from the library. Of course, I then had to make it "worth it" by actually getting it read before I took it back! I fit it in between everything else going on, and I'm so glad I did!

This is basically a "what if" story. What if, a few years from now, we have another civil war in this country. The war is between those that are on side of  pro-life, and those on the side of pro-choice.. regarding the abortion issue. What if in order to end this war, a compromise is reached called The Bill of Life. This agreement states that all babies will be born, and will live until they are 13 years old at which time the parents can then choose to "unwind" them. This means, 100% of their bodies are harvested to be used for others, thereby keeping the child essentially "alive." They have until the kid is 18 years old to decide, at which point, they are too old for unwinding.

What if kids who are destined for this fate run away? Bond with each other? Find adults willing to help them... a sort of underground railroad system in fact? And there, you have this story, about three kids (a troublemaker, an orphan and a tithe) dealing with the fact that they are on their way to be unwound, and what ends up happening to them. 

It's quite the statement. Not preachy or anything, but very very powerful. Beware, there's one very disturbing chapter. But overall, it's gripping and action-packed and intense and heartbreaking.

Bottom line: I loved it. A lot.

I've heard about this author for awhile now, but this is the first book of his I've read. I really hope to read more before too long. For more on author Neal Shusterman, click here for his official website. 

Oh, and it looks like this book is being made into a movie. Cool. And there's talk of a sequel to the book, but I couldn't confirm it.

Other reviews:
Becky's Book Reviews
Bookshelves of Doom
Presenting Lenore
Karin's Book Nook
So Many Books, So Little Time


  1. At first I gave this one 4 stars because I really liked it. But then I went back later and gave it 5 stars because I couldn't stop thinking about it. I thought it was fab!

  2. I just hate when I forget about a library book! I'm so glad you were able to find the time to read this one as it sounds like an amazing storyline. This is about the second or third review I have read for Unwind, and all of them have been favorable. Looks like it is going on the list :)

  3. There you go, adding more to my "Get it now!" list. This sounds amazing! I'm going to go put this on hold now.

  4. You should totally read The Schwa was Here by Shusterman. Not even similar to Unwind (which was fabulous) but totally entertaining!

  5. Unwind was one of my favorite reads of 09. I loved it, but I agree that there is one disturbing chapter, but compared to a lot of the completely disturbing books out there it is very well done.

  6. Where have I been? I hadn't heard of this before but it sounds fascinating. What a concept for a book!

  7. Thanks for linking to my review! I have heard that there will be a companion book, and of course I am super excited!

  8. A movie and a sequel? Cool!

    I read this in Jan for book club and it was amazing ... but in a really creepy way. I actually listened to it on my iPod and it was INTENSE!!



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