My post today is about one of the most haunting, disturbing books I have ever read — Unwind by Neal Shusterman. The premise of the book is this: the second Civil War in our country is called the Heartland War, and it is fought over reproductive rights. The result of the war is Unwinding: abortion is not allowed; parents must have their children and keep them until the age of 13. Between the ages of 13 – 18, however, any parents who decide they they no longer want to keep their child may choose to instead have the child Unwound, which means the child’s body in its entirety must be used as donor parts so that, technically, the life goes on, just in a divided state. The story focuses on the main characters of Connor, Risa, and Lev — all scheduled for Unwinding for different reasons — and how their lives intersect and how they deal with their imminent Unwindings.
The premise of the book is seriously messed up, and I will tell you without giving away any plot details that yes, you will get to witness an Unwinding, and it is a scene you will not soon forget, it is so powerful and disturbing. Hats off to Neal Shusterman for his amazing creativity in developing the premise of this book and the unnerving description of Unwinding. The man is brilliant.
If you are like me and enjoy dystopian fiction, I highly suggest reading this book. There are other books to create a series (or a dystology, as some call it). I have read them, and while they are good, in my opinion, none of them live up to Unwind.