Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Unwind (Audiobook)

In celebration of National Audiobook Month is Unwind by Neal Shusterman. I am so happy I chose to experience this novel via audiobook because I feel that it added to the suspense of this already thrilling book.

Unwind takes place in the future, after the "Heartland Wars" which were only concluded when the government decided that abortion would be illegal, but parents would have the opportunity to "unwind" their children when they became teenagers. The body parts of these unwound teens would be harvested for parts and sold or donated to those who needed them. They see this as a way for the teens to continue living, just in a divided state.

Unwind is written from multiple perspectives, mainly those of Connor (a troublesome teen), Risa (an aging foster child), and Lev (a "tithe" who is being unwound as a religious offering from his family). The shifts in point of view kept the novel moving at a brisk pace and also allowed Shusterman to give more historical details to this new society. None of the three protagonists' unwinding works out according to plan and their stories weave in and out until coming together in a nerve-racking ending.

I listened to Unwind on a roundtrip excursion across South Carolina; the ten hours of the audiobook perfectly fit the length of the drive and kept me entertained the entire time. It was the fastest that ride has ever felt! At first I wasn't a big fan of Luke Daniels, the reader, but once he began narrating from other perspectives and using more voices, he grew on me. By the end, I was parked in my driveway, riveted to the description of a harvesting.

Some parents may be skittish with the references to a civil war over the issue of abortion, but that aspect is very minimal. I'd encourage parents to read the book (or listen to it) with their child because there are so many rich conversations that it sparks.


  1. I had mixed feelings about this book. I listened to it on audio as well and enjoyed it. There were just some parts that were a little over the top for me, and at times it was too much of a stretch for me. Overall, I thought it was great and thought provoking!
    ~ Jen @ A Book and a Latte


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