Previously on Teen Books That Don’t Give You Homicidal Urges… I reviewed Across the Universe by Beth Revis. Yeah. Anyways, read it.
On this episode, I’m reviewing Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan, author of The Demon’s Lexicon Trilogy. This book, however, does not come with an urgent push to read it right now. You will soon see why…
The Plot: Take all of your old, tired stereotypes of Gothic novels, girl reporters, and bad boys and throw them out the window. In this charming and hilarious novel, Sarah Rees Brennan tells the story of Kami Glass who is in love with a boy who lives in her head, who she’s never met until he shows up in the little English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale. What’s more, Jared is a member of the mysterious Lynburn family—the “ruling family” of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Kami, with the help of her sarcastic, misanthropic, and gorgeous best friend Angela, new friend Holly, and the reluctant Jared, investigates the creepy events that are happing. Twisty secrets, snappy dialogue, and plenty of opportunities for shipping!
Why This Book Is Special: One of the things I love about Sarah Rees Brennan is how she turns YA clichés on their noggins. Jared, the bad boy with a leather jacket, is a romantic, convinced he and Kami are soul mates. The character of Kami, the quirky, funny girl is usually regulated to sidekick position, but here she’s the main character. Holly, as the bubbly blonde, should be the brain-dead cheerleader who torments Kami, but here’s she’s smart and caring. Beautiful Angela is lazy and hates people (she’s also my favorite). Kami, unlike most YA heroes, actually has a family, and her father, Jon Glass, is a close second for my favorite character. Nothing in this book is as it seems, and I love it.
Bonus: Kami is part Japanese, and there’s bits of Japanese mythology here. Hopefully we’ll see more in the sequels, Untold and Unbroken. Also, look for the short story prequels online: The Spring Before I Met You and The Summer Before I Met You.
Who Should Read It: Now this is the part where I say anyone who wants a clever small-town mystery with quirky, original characters should pick up a copy RIGHTNOW. However, all I can say is do not read this book. I mean it. You’ll be rocking along through the story until the last bit and then the feels (oh, gosh THE FEELS!) will destroy you.
But, you know, if you really want to read it…well, then, what are you waiting for? We could all use a bit of pain and misery in our lives.