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Unwind (Unwind Dystology) Paperback – June 2, 2009
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From School Library Journal
Starred Review. Grade 7 Up—Set in the future, the second civil war is fought over abortion. To end the war, a compromise is reached that ends the practice of abortion but creates an alternative called "unwinding." Between the ages of 13 and 17, parents or guardians can choose to have their children unwound, which involves having every part of their bodies harvested to be "donated" to another person so, technically, they don't really die. The complex and compelling plot follows three teens whose stories intertwine when they escape while on their way to the harvest camps. Fifteen-year-old Connor's parents can no longer control him. Lev, a tithe, was raised by religious parents for the sole purpose of being unwound. Risa, a ward of the state, is a victim of shrinking budgets since she is not a talented enough musician to be kept alive. Neal Shusterman's engrossing novel (S & S, 2007) is narrated in an even cadence and matter-of-fact tone that suits the author's straightforward narrative style. His wide array of voices makes the involved story line, which is left wide open for what is sure to be an interesting sequel, easy to follow. This gripping, thought-provoking novel is guaranteed to lead to interesting discussions about abortion, adoption, organ donation, religion, politics, and health care.—Karen T. Bilton, Mary Jacobs Memorial Library, Rocky Hill, NJ
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"Well-written, this draws the readers into a world that is both familiar and strangely foreign, and generates feelings of horror, disturbance, disgust and fear. As with classics such as "1984" and "Fahrenheit 451", one can only hope that this vision of the future never becomes reality."--"Kirkus Reviews"
"The power of the novel lies in what it doesn't do: come down explicitly on one side or the other."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"Nail-biting, character-driven thriller."--"The Horn Book"
* "A thought-provoking, well-paced read that will appeal widely."--"School Library Journal", starred review
"Poignant, compelling, and ultimately terrifying, this book will enjoy popularity with a wide range of readers."--"VOYA", 4Q4P
"Following in the footsteps of Jonathan Swift, Shusterman uncorks a Modest Proposal of his own to solve a Pro-Life/Pro-Choice dilemma...ingeniously developed cast and premise."--"Booklist"
* "Gripping, brilliantly imagined futuristic thriller...The issues raised could not be more provocative--the sanctity of life, the meaning of being human--while the delivery could hardly be more engrossing or better aimed to teens."--"Publishers Weekly, "starred review
"The shocking premise is unveiled immediately, and a nail-biting pace is sustained throughout, with the teens flung headlong into a true life-or-death struggle...these haunting debates will likely linger in the reader's mind even after the riveting plot fades...an ideal blend of philosophy and action set in a compelling futuristic landscape."--"The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books"
Top customer reviews
Really wish this book had gotten more traction in the media/mainstream. I think there is a lot to learn from these books while being a wonderful read as well! This series will leave you think which is great! The author assumes the reader is smart enough and some of the scariest things about this world are the things that are insinuated and not spelled out for you!
Highly recommend this book , on the order of the Underground railroad , George Orwell's "1984" and Nolan and Johnson's "Logan's Run" combined.
The concept itself was interesting enough, but Shusterman's expert craft takes it further and makes it a book that has stuck with me over the years. The characters are realistic, and flawed. At points, they aren't likable. Their various stories take the reader through the process of really considering the value of human life and hoe er handle it. It forces the reader to ask themselves hard questions as the characters are doing the same, and at the same time gives teenagers a sense of agency to stand up for what they know is right.
This is the kind of book I would want my children studying in a classroom.
The book goes into amazing detail about the characters. All of them are likeable in their own ways and each has a compelling story. Even the characters you are supposed to hate, you end up liking and/or feeling sorry for them. The author does a good job at making you feel at least -something- for the characters. Each of the characters by the end of the book changes for the better. Each of them has learned something new about not only others, but themselves. There is one chapter in the book where something happens to a beloved character and it is VERY graphic. I had to re-read it 3 times! When you get to that part, you'll know. Throughout the entire book all you do is hear from characters who don't want to be unwound, or who know someone who has been unwound. But no one knows the process and that left me curious. The old saying "curiousity kill the cat" was DEAD ON. Because after I read a specific chapter, I wished I hadn't and it made me feel incredibly sad for all those children who were being unwound.
This book is a MUST read. TRUST me. You will enjoy this book and be happy you went along for the ride
As a reader, I was riveted by this book. Even with a busy schedule (and while reading a couple of other books), I got through it in just a few days. It is a longish book for students who don't like to read; but if a student gets into it, there will be a huge payoff for teachers like me... because there are a bunch of sequels in the series!
I'm taking this to school to add to my classroom library. Can't wait to see what the kids think!