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39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tissues Required!
This story clearly shows the pain of losing your child to Autism. I know many moms who carry the burden each day, but I never understood the toll it must take on each of them. I cannot begin to imagine how much it would hurt if my child stopped making eye contact with me or if my child stopped allowing me to touch him. My words cannot begin to describe the pain I feel...
Published on October 12, 2010 by Mommyoeo

versus
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Contrived, inaccurate portrayal
The storyline is contrived, predictable and the writing style average. Having worked with autistic children I have to point out that this book is not an accurate portrayal of changes seen with autistic people. Saying, as the author does at the end of her book, that "autism is called a spectrum disorder because no two cases are exactly the same" is accurate, but it can...
Published on October 16, 2010 by cathmom&teacher


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39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tissues Required!, October 12, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
This story clearly shows the pain of losing your child to Autism. I know many moms who carry the burden each day, but I never understood the toll it must take on each of them. I cannot begin to imagine how much it would hurt if my child stopped making eye contact with me or if my child stopped allowing me to touch him. My words cannot begin to describe the pain I feel from just imagining the scenario. This story is beautifully told, as all Karen Kingsbury stories are, but I am most excited about this one because I can allow my 12-year-old daughter to read it as well. I'm longing to share all of the Kingsbury books with her when she's a bit older. This one is perfect for adults, as well as middle and high schoolers. The best pert of any Kingsbury book is how she clearly shows what it is like to live a life of walking with God. For so many who are starting the journey, or just need encouragement, it is helpful to "see" what the journey of others looks like. Readers will laugh and cry, and many lives will be changed.
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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Book inspired by real life. Mitch, May 8, 2011
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
Length:: 2:10 Mins

Hi everyone, This video was created by the young man (my son) who inspired Karen to write this book. Christian Youth Theater, the book Unlocked, and the events around the KKLive event in 2010 have been nothing short of a miracle. The encouraging words, the scriptures verses applied, and the support for Mitch has been nothing short of amazing.

Mitch reviews the book, talks about KKLive with Karen, and invites you to join his growing community on Facebook. Search for Mitch-Unlocked and "Like" his page. He will keep you informed on the daily and weekly events going on for him. He also keeps you informed on issues with Autism.

Please read and distribute Unlocked to as many people as you can. The messages of Autism awareness, Bullying, and applying Christian love is the central theme of this great book.

Also, you can read the real story of Mitch's life in this book written by Carrie Thatcher, Mitch's mom. Take an opportunity to learn the real life story behind the fictional character that Karen created. Good Night Mitch

Thank you from Mitch's Family.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unlocked, October 13, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
Karen Kingsbury has done it again. Every time I open one of her books, I cannot put it down. They have been such a blessing to me.
In Unlocked, Holden Harris, a high school student with Autism is greatly helped after finding his childhood friend Ella. She, with the power of faith and music, touches his life and breaks down the walls created by Autism.
The character development is wonderful and readers are given a window into the mind of someone who has Autism in ways they have never been before. The characters are believable and I found myself laughing and crying.
I am a college student and have never really known someone with Autism. This book was truly an eyeopener and opened my heart to things I had never thought about before. Everyone should read this book.
Kudos to Mrs. Kingsbury for her wonderful writing. The Lord has certainly used her to bless many with her writings and I pray he will continue to do so!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally Packed, October 13, 2010
By 
P. Schoen "luv to read" (Denham Springs, LA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
This book was absolutely an emotional ride. I always am amazed at the writings of Karen. This book dealt with not only about Autism but also had a gut wrenching truth of teen suicide in our world today. The book really touched me in so many ways. GOD is truely amazing and he works through these books that GOD has gifted Karen to write. A box of tissues is always by my side as I read her books. This one is a must. Love the book and keep writing Karen. BEEBEE
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Contrived, inaccurate portrayal, October 16, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
The storyline is contrived, predictable and the writing style average. Having worked with autistic children I have to point out that this book is not an accurate portrayal of changes seen with autistic people. Saying, as the author does at the end of her book, that "autism is called a spectrum disorder because no two cases are exactly the same" is accurate, but it can not explain the liberty she has taken in presenting an impossible transformation in her character. This is a piece of fiction and I hope my review reminds people that the author has imagined what is going on in the mind of an autistic teen and that such a transformation highly unlikely, although it may be desired. I was shocked to see extraordinary number of five star reviews, especially since that is almost unheard of on amazon even with award winning books. After investigating the authors website, facebook and blog I became aware of a giveaway contest involving amazon reviews. That explains a good deal. It's unfortunate when Christians attempt to obscure the truth for earthly gain. Christian teens between 14-18 would find this book interesting.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Unlocked" - socially relevant and spiritually uplifting, October 19, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
Karen Kingsbury presents the story of Holden Harris, an autistic teen struggling to connect with the outside world, and Ella Reynolds, a typical peer willing to look beyond his quirks to get to know the person inside. Ms. Kingsbury does an excellent job tackling prevalent societal issues such as, the acceptance of those with special needs, bullying, and teen suicide. As a school social worker I was excited to read a story that communicates the message that it is urgent we teach our children to always show love rather than judgment, and to reach out with kindness to those who seem different. As a Christian, I was inspired, as I often am by Ms. Kingsbury's work, by the wonderful way that the story of Holden Harris reminds readers that with faith nothing is impossible, and God is always bigger than the struggles we face.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars simple, November 30, 2010
By 
This review is from: Unlocked: A Love Story (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I hope that other Karen Kingsbury fans don't tar and feather me for this review. I am giving it honestly and with a good heart that takes nothing away from Ms. Kingsbury's own heart, talent, and passions. I have read and enjoyed almost every book I've read by Ms. Kingsbury other than this one.
I was unable to read this book after multiple attempts to do so. It was simply too formulaic, too sweet, too predictable, too simplistic, too everything I don't like. I find that the older I get and the more life I get under my belt, the more I appreciate the depth and width and breadth of things (be they books, food, people, etc.) that have complexity and unexpectedness within them.
I ordered Unlocked because my stepson is on the autistic spectrum and I am always searching for insight into what is going on in his mind and his life.
What I appreciated in the few chapters I could get through was that there was an attempt to show us that God is actively relating to and working in all of us, whether those of us who are "normal" realize it or not. I also appreciated that the coldheartedness and lack of awareness of bullies was brought to the foreground. I am thankful that God appears to have provided the people I have met who are on the autistic spectrum a special gift for either being oblivious to the bulk of the bullying and ostracism they experience, or having some type of filter that lets it roll off of them. If I had experienced a fraction of the ugliness that my stepson has received, I would have joined the roll call of the heartbreaking suicidal children we are hearing about. Fortunately, my stepson keeps his even keel throughout it all and only reacts to the worst of it all.
God bless to all who read this who have children or loved ones with autism, especially those who are on the far end of the spectrum and appear to be "lost" to us. They aren't lost to God.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A spin-off of Take Four, November 6, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
It has been a while since Karen Kingsbury has written a stand alone book such as this one. However, this book was alluded to in Take Four (Above the Line Series #4). So this is more of a spin-off than a stand alone.

The story line is sweet and the characters relate able. There is both joy and sadness within the story. Life-changing fiction gives readers a chance to escape their lives and connect with these characters. It makes us rethink our own issues and life's struggles. This book makes me grateful for the blessing of my family.

I have one issue with the story. I have a hard time with the special need students being separated from the rest of the student body. After No Child Left Behind, special needs students are mainstreamed into all classrooms as much as possible. Inclusion would have prevented a student such as Holden Harris from being segregated into a special building. Since ADA and IDEA, schools are not allowed to have a special wing or building for special needs students. One local school had 2 special needs rooms side-by-side and had to move them apart to prevent the perception that these students were segregated. This story element would not bother me so much if it was not such a big part of the story. A teacher like Mr. Hawkins, the drama teacher in the story, would have no choice but to let a student like Holden into his classroom. He would have been forced to accommodate such a student. It would not have been such a big deal for Holden to be placed into the theater class.

Overall, this was an easy to read book that makes us all grateful for what we have.

To comply with new regulations introduced by the Federal Trade Commission, I must post that Zondervan has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book to review. I also must say that the opinions are all mine.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These are books this world needs more of!, October 16, 2010
By 
ANNIE (Rhode Island) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
This author's ability to write about true issues and problems people face in every day life draw the reader in and speaks to the soul. Her books always inspire me, and UNLOCKED was a true blessing! Unlocked is another incredible story about life, love, and true caring, respect and kindness. This should be mandatory reading to all!

This book tackles the relationship between parents also of a special need person. It takes a toll on a marriage and most don't survive. She explored the struggle the Harris's had and explained how helpless parents of a special needs child feel and how much the children need both parents together. How incredibly timely this book is that deals with bullying! This book is a light of hope! Her books inspire me to be a better person and strengthen me in so many ways! Her depiction of a child with autism is amazing and enlightening. I believe this book is a blessing and it will open the eyes of all who read this! Though I have read almost every one of her books this was a little different. It touched on subjects that are often hard to deal with. I found myself crying at times, tears of joy or sadness and cheering at others.

The subject of bullying and autism are dealt with lovingly and should be a lesson to all who read this. It covers these issues and opens the understanding eye to that because a person is different that is no reason or excuse to judge or make fun of! I can't understand why it is so hard for some people to try to see through the other person's eyes! It is a beautiful story of friends finding each other after years have passed and how in the process a phenomenon can happen when you love instead of hate.

These are books this world needs more of! We need to bring respect, peace, joy, kindness and understanding back into the world before it is too late!

I love all of Karen Kingsbury's books; also, Picoult, Pirrung, Rivers and others who write with the special "touch" to inspire.

Ann T. Mason
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fiction which touches the heart and opens eyes, October 16, 2010
This review is from: Unlocked (Paperback)
This is told with depth and heart felt compassion.
I highly recommend Karen Kingsbury's books and have read all she has written.
This is one of her best.... each book I read I feel is quality and they just get better and better.

She captures such depth and character in her stories.
I love how she deals with issues with compassion and on such a life level to open eyes and change lives.

This book is excellent for young and old alike.

It helps show what the parents and friends and family and person with autism deal with on a daily basis. This is a beautiful story of hope.
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Unlocked
Unlocked by Karen Kingsbury (Paperback - October 12, 2010)
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