17 September 2012

Review: Unraveling

Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had hit a bit of an overall rut in my stack in the last few days, and I finally got to Unraveling, a bit of a tome by Elizabeth Norris. Judging by the cover, I was...well, not very high on this one. With sci-fi for teens being so polarizing, and with dystopia all the rage, I wasn't especially looking forward to the teen heroine in the unrecognizable world making good and saving whatever it is that needs to be saved.

Unraveling is not that book. It's not dystopia, it's not simple heroics. Instead, it's a thrilling adventure ride that's part The Event, part Fringe, and really all awesome.

The book follows Janelle, who is a lifeguard during the summer and who, quite abruptly, gets hit by a truck coming out of nowhere and is killed. At least she should be dead, except for the mysterious person who healed her on the side of the road as the ambulances came. She was okay in the end, but she knows she should be dead and thinks she knows who healed her.

Her father, an FBI agent, has problems of his own - victims are popping up with severe radiation burns, and there is an IED of sorts running a countdown. Oh, and the guy who hit her in the truck? He's severely burned as well, and for no reason they can come up with.

It's up to all these people, intertwined in ways they could have never imagined, to figure out exactly what the countdown is, and the road to get there is a ton of fun. It's a little profane, a little mind-bendy, and there's just a ton of good stuff going on. I definitely recommend it, it's a pleasant surprise overall, and really one of the better recent sci-fi books I've read.

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