Monday, April 20, 2009

The Ninja Reviews. . .Unwind by Neal Shusterman

In a not-too distant future, parents can choose, for whatever reason, to have their teenage sons and daughters unwound. To be unwound is to have your body parts - everything from your eyes to your lungs to your entire leg - harvested and given to someone who needs them.

In Neal Shusterman's eerie, Lone Star award-winning novel, the story goes back and forth between three teens: Connor, whose parents can no longer deal with the trouble he causes; Risa, an orphan who isn't as talented as she needs to be to survive the orphanage's budget cuts; and Lev, who is known as a tithe, someone raised in preparation to one day be unwound.

A friend of mine brought this book to me and said, "You have got to read this. There was this one part that I just can't stop thinking about. I can't get it out of my head!"

And, yeah. My friend was right.

Even if you can't believe that the government would allow teenager's body parts to be "harvested", the story sucks you in right away. One of the issues the characters deal with is whether or not teens are still alive when they are unwound. The authorities say so. They never use the words "kill" or "dead." Instead, they say someone who has been unwound is "in a divided state." When a teen is sent to be unwound, they are sent to harvest camps. Makes it sound much nicer, doesn't it?

My favorite character was Cyrus Finch (CyiFi), whom Lev meets up with. Cyrus is a good person, but has these moments where he talks and acts strangely. Cyrus's story is incredibly terrifying and nearly made me cry.

There is also a lot of great slang words that the characters use that add to the creepiness of the book.

I highly recommend Unwind to anyone who likes these:


Jill said...

I just finished Unwind and it was excellent. Thanks again for a awesome suggestion.

Amy said...

Thanks, Jill! I'm glad you liked it. It's one of those that sticks with you a long time after you've read it.