Tag: sci fi

Sunday Series Review: The UnWind Series

Today Kim reviews The UnWind series by Neal Schusterman. I am sure you all know by now how much she loves him! He is becoming a favorite author of hers.

The UnWind Series by Neal Shusterman

Books in the Series:  
UnWind
UnWholly
UnSouled
UnDivided
UnBound

Series Summary Description:

After the Second Civil War, the Bill of Life states that human life may not be touched from the moment of conception until a child reaches the age of thirteen. However, a loophole allows parents to retroactively get rid of a teenager through a process called “unwinding.”

Three teens defy the system and run away from their unwinding: Connor, a rebel whose parents have ordered his unwinding; Risa, a ward of the state who is to be unwound due to cost-cutting; and Lev, his parents’ tenth child whose unwinding has been planned since birth as a religious tithing.

As their paths intersect and lives hang in the balance, Connor, Risa, and Lev must work together to survive—and they may change the fate of America in the process.


UnWind
Published: June 2, 2009
353 pages

In a society where unwanted teens are salvaged for their body parts, three runaways fight the system that would “unwind” them. Connor’s parents want to be rid of him because he’s a troublemaker. Risa has no parents and is being unwound to cut orphanage costs. Lev’s unwinding has been planned since his birth, as part of his family’s strict religion. Brought together by chance, and kept together by desperation, these three unlikely companions make a harrowing cross-country journey, knowing their lives hang in the balance. If they can survive until their eighteenth birthday, they can’t be harmed — but when every piece of them, from their hands to their hearts, are wanted by a world gone mad, eighteen seems far, far away.

UnWholly
Published: August 28, 2012
417 pages

Thanks to Connor, Lev, and Risa—and their high-profile revolt at Happy Jack Harvest Camp—people can no longer turn a blind eye to unwinding. Ridding society of troublesome teens while simultaneously providing much-needed organs for transplanting might be convenient, but its morality has finally been brought into question. However, unwinding has become big business, and there are powerful political and corporate interests that want to see it not only continue, but also expand to the unwinding of prisoners and the impoverished. Cam is made entirely out of the parts of other unwinds; he is a teen who does not technically exist. A futuristic Frankenstein, Cam struggles to find identity and meaning and wonders if a rewound being can have a soul. And when the actions of a sadistic bounty hunter cause Cam’s fate to become inextricably bound with the fates of Connor, Risa, and Lev, he’ll have to question humanity itself.

UnSouled
Published: October 15, 2013
433 pages

Connor and Lev are on the run after the destruction of the Graveyard, the last safe haven for AWOL Unwinds. But for the first time, they’re not just running away from something. This time, they’re running towards answers, in the form of a woman Proactive Citizenry has tried to erase from history itself. If they can find her, and learn why the shadowy figures behind unwinding are so afraid of her, they may discover the key to ending the unwinding process forever. Cam, the rewound boy, is plotting to take down the organization that created him. He knows that if he can bring Proactive Citizenry to its knees, it will show Risa how he truly feels about her. And without Risa, Cam is having trouble remembering what it feels like to be human. With the Juvenile Authority and vindictive parts pirates hunting them, their paths will converge explosively—and everyone will be changed.

UnDivided
Published: October 14, 2014
385 pages

Proactive Citizenry, the company that created Cam from the parts of unwound teens, has a plan: to mass produce rewound teens like Cam for military purposes. And below the surface of that horror lies another shocking level of intrigue: Proactive Citizenry has been suppressing technology that could make unwinding completely unnecessary. As Conner, Risa, and Lev uncover these startling secrets, enraged teens begin to march on Washington to demand justice and a better future. But more trouble is brewing. Starkey’s group of storked teens is growing more powerful and militant with each new recruit. And if they have their way, they’ll burn the harvest camps to the ground and put every adult in them before a firing squad—which could destroy any chance America has for a peaceful future.

UnBound
Published: December 15, 2015
321 pages

Find out what happens to Connor, Risa, and Lev now that they’ve finally destroyed the Proactive Citizenry in this collection of short stories set in the world of the New York Timesbestselling Unwind Dystology by Neal Shusterman. Connor Lassiter’s fight to bring down Proactive Citizenry and find a suitable alternative to unwinding concluded in UnDivided. Now Connor, Risa, and Lev are free to live in a peaceful future—or are they? Neal Shusterman brings back his beloved Unwind characters for his fans to see what’s left for those who were destined to be unwound.


Kim’s Rating of the Series: 4.8 stars
Kim’s Review of the Series:

This series blew me away! Neal Shusterman is easily becoming one of my all time favorite authors. He manages to bring in philosophy without being pompous and boring. He takes controversial issues, keeps to neutral ground, and shows the reasoning behind both sides. You start out knowing exactly which side of the issue that you’re on, but then find yourself agreeing with some of the reasoning behind the other side. I didn’t think anything could top the Scythe series, but this one did.

I love Connor, Risa, and Lev so much. They are teens who start out with narrow viewpoints, as regular annoying teens and then are thrown into very adult situations, and they shine! The supporting characters are believable and fit the story perfectly. There are several rabbit trails that branched off of each story, but they were simple and easy to follow and keep track of. And as I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that there’s a decimal up top in the rating. This was a difficult one to rate, mostly because I wanted so badly to give 5 stars. There were very small things that I didn’t like, a little teenage drama within the series, and some weaker short stories in UnBound that kept me from giving a perfect score. But overall, I loved this series, and I think this is the perfect series for teens. I might even be giving this series out as Christmas and birthday gifts this year! I would absolutely recommend this series to everybody!

Series Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Release Day Review of The One by John Marrs and a US Giveaway!

Author: John Marrs
Published: Today, February 20, 2018
416 pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 11-18, 2018
Jessica’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description from Amazon:

How far would you go to find The One?

A simple DNA test is all it takes. Just a quick mouth swab and soon you’ll be matched with your perfect partner—the one you’re genetically made for.

That’s the promise made by Match Your DNA. A decade ago, the company announced that they had found the gene that pairs each of us with our soul mate. Since then, millions of people around the world have been matched. But the discovery has its downsides: test results have led to the breakup of countless relationships and upended the traditional ideas of dating, romance and love.

Now five very different people have received the notification that they’ve been “Matched.” They’re each about to meet their one true love. But “happily ever after” isn’t guaranteed for everyone. Because even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking than others…

A word-of-mouth hit in the United Kingdom, The One is a fascinating novel that shows how even the simplest discoveries can have complicated consequences.

Jessica’s Review:

Holy. Crap…. Words cannot begin to describe The One by John Marrs. This is Science Fiction that could possibly one day become science fact. (But, isn’t that what all Science Fiction is?: Fiction until the time comes where it is reality?????) John Marrs, where did you come up with this idea?  You are brilliant and I loved this novel!

This book has been released in the United Kingdom for some time and it is FINALLY released here in the States!  It seems like I have been anticipating this novel forever; So much so I began to worry that it would fail my high expectations, but Marrs exceeded them. The One had been previously titled as A Thousand Small Explosions and there are references to the former title in the novel.  I prefer the title of The One to the previous title.

The One makes you think and will cause debate… Could this become a reality and would you take the test?  What could be the results of taking the test?  We experience the stories of five extremely different individuals who take the test and the positive and negative consequences they all face.  These stories all have very different results in their relationships as the test only takes into account DNA, and not race, religion, gender, or even location in the world.

This is a very compelling and addictive novel and you just want to keep turning those pages! Marrs is brilliant with his short chapters that have you in disbelief as you reach each conclusion.  The stories go back and forth between each of the five persons and you don’t know what is going to happen next. (Or you think you know and you are wrong!)  I found myself saying, “I must keep reading!”  The short chapters make The One a quick and compulsive read.

The question still remains: Would YOU take the test?????

***Many thanks to the publisher for granting me an e-arc via NetGalley and also John Marrs as I won a signed copy via GoodReads. I really enjoyed this novel and will treasure my signed copy. Please note that I also purchased a copy via Book Depository that I will be giving away to one lucky US resident! 

Here is my signed copy! 

For some fun go to this website: http://matchyourdna.co.uk/ You can find out which character is your match.  Who did you get? I’ll share my results:

 


Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

GIVEAWAY!!!
It’s time for a giveaway! This one will be for US only and will run until Saturday 2/24 at midnight Eastern.  You are entering to win a new UK edition of The One. I bought it from Book Depository before you could get it in the US.  Once I won my signed copy from Goodreads I knew I would give this one away.  Good luck everyone!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Thunderhead

**Thunderhead is the sequel to Scythe by Neal Shusterman. Kim’s review of Scythe is here.  Jessica will be listening to the audiobook of Scythe very soon.

Author: Neal Shusterman
Published: November 21, 2017
504 pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating:  5 stars

Book Description:

Rowan and Citra take opposite stances on the morality of the Scythedom, putting them at odds, in the chilling sequel to the Printz Honor Book Scythe from New York Times bestseller Neal Shusterman, author of the Unwind dystology. The Thunderhead cannot interfere in the affairs of the Scythedom. All it can do is observe—it does not like what it sees.

A year has passed since Rowan had gone off grid. Since then, he has become an urban legend, a vigilante snuffing out corrupt scythes in a trial by fire. His story is told in whispers across the continent. As Scythe Anastasia, Citra gleans with compassion and openly challenges the ideals of the “new order.” But when her life is threatened and her methods questioned, it becomes clear that not everyone is open to the change. Will the Thunderhead intervene? Or will it simply watch as this perfect world begins to unravel?

Kim’s Review:

A year has passed since I read Scythe for the first time. I counted down the days until Thunderhead would be released. I jumped up and down when I opened the box and there it sat in all its gorgeous glory. I opened it and descended into the world of Scythes gleaning and the Thunderhead guiding and the human population living. Scythe Lucifer spends his time trying to save Scythedom from corruption and murder. Citra tries to embrace Scythe Anastasia and grow into her own method of gleaning. Scythe Curie carefully guides and teaches her former apprentice, turned junior Scythe while trying to keep up with her own gleaning. And in this book, the Thunderhead is revealed. Its thinking, and strangely, its feeling comes out in great detail! It cares for the world and humans and it works constantly to care for them and protect them, all while trying to preserve privacy and freedom.

I was fascinated by the way Shusterman compares Thunderhead to God, yet focuses on the differences between the two. And then, at page 450, when I realized that there weren’t enough pages to resolve the story, my stomach started to clench. And no, the story didn’t resolve, this isn’t a duology, there’s another book in the series . . . and it doesn’t come out until 2019!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wanted to throw the book across the room and curse the name of Neal Shusterman with every evil thing and swear word I could possibly think of!!!!!!!! I’m never going to make it, I’m gonna die of anticipation, that’s it. I would talk about all the philosophy and logic and ethics and deep thinking that were in Thunderhead, but I’m just too mad. I would highly suggest waiting to read this series until the next book comes out . . . oh gosh, what if that’s not the last book in the series????

GRRRRRRRRRRR!! That’s it, no more reading!!! I can’t take the stress!!! Ok, let’s get back to a professional review. I would absolutely recommend this series to anybody. I would save this for more mature teens, not because of objectionable elements, but because more mature thinking is required. An excellent book and series . . . so excellent that it draws you in and envelops you just to keep you hanging off a dang cliffhanger!

Purchase Links
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Kim and Neal Shusterman at a recent book signing in Charleston:

 

 

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