“One day, long ago, she’d gone seeking an adventure and found terror instead. That day had changed the course of her life, and left her hands awash in blood. It was not her fault, but this was how it must be. She understood that now.”
Poor, trusting Alice. She went with her best friend on a supposed adventure and ended up in an insane asylum. She doesn’t remember what happened, only before and after. Before, she was a sweet innocent girl who lived in the New City, and after, she was found wandering the streets of the Old City with blood on her thighs muttering about a rabbit. Now, she has the chance to escape the asylum with Hatcher (who was living on the other side of the wall for 8 years) and she is about to embark on an even stranger adventure, dark, bloody, and frankly a bit disturbing.
This is not the Alice you remember from the Disney movie, some of the characters are here: Alice, Cheshire, the Rabbit, the Caterpillar, but they are not as you remember them. This book is full of violence, human trafficking, and rape. Women are treated as objects at best and as sex toys or killing toys at worst. Sections of the Old City are owned by ruthless gang lords, and women are never safe there. But, this is also a story of justice and revenge. Believe me when I say Alice & her friend Hatcher (from the asylum) are no slackers when it comes to giving people what they deserve.
So, should you read it? Well, if you like dark, creepy, retellings which are more horror than fantasy, and if you won’t be disturbed by the violence, then go for it. If you are the tiniest bit squeamish, then I suggest you pass.
There is one version of my story that everyone knows. And then there is the truth. Once I loved a boy called Peter Pan. Peter brought me to his island because there were no rules and no grownups to make us mind. He brought boys from the Other Place to join in the fun, but Peter’s idea of fun is sharper than a pirate’s sword. He wants always to be that shining sun that we all revolve around. He’ll do anything to be that sun. Peter promised we would all be young and happy forever. Peter will say I’m a villain, that I wronged him, that I never was his friend. Peter Lies.
What if you heard the story from another character’s point of view? Would it change who you thought of as the hero??
If the story was anything like this, then I would say yes. This is the true story of Captain Hook. In this version, Peter is a trickster with no conscience who only cares about staying young, having fun, and getting what he wants. Before he became Captain Hook, Jamie was a strong, determined young boy, even though he was more than a bit naive.
Peter brought Jamie to the island so they could stay young forever, together. And no one had better stand in the way of Peter getting his way. Is Peter magic? Is it the island? And what will happen when Jamie finally figures out the truth?
OK, so we all know the end, but we don’t know how they get there. And that is where this story hooks you.
It is bloody, violent, sad, chilling, and even sentimental at times. I loved the narration. Samuel Roukin (British accent and all) set the scene and had me immersed in the world of the lost boys.
Highly recommended – if you don’t mind violence. The concept of “never growing up” isn’t as appealing as it once was…
It’s not such a wonderful thing
To be young.
It’s heartless and selfish.
Jamie what are you thinking?? That trickster Peter cannot be trusted, even if he is your best friend.
This is a Peter Pan told from the viewpoint of Captain Hook (before he became Captain Hook) and it’s quite good so far.
“We can lie to ourselves, saying we believe one thing, and sometimes we convince others it’s true, with the hope that by convincing others, we can convince ourselves. Wars are often waged not because of what we believe, but because of the things we want others to believe.”
Book 3 in the Skinjacker series. I love the series, the characters, the ups & downs, basically everything about it. I am now a huge fan of Neal Shusterman. This is the second series I’m reading by him and I’m now ready for the next one.
This book is amazing. It takes the characters on surprising and unexpected paths that end up in quite unusual ways. No characters are just plain evil or good. They all take personal journeys and look at the world in different ways. I felt for all of them at different points in the book and I cringed at their actions at other points.
Recommended: Grades 7 & up. Fans of fantasy or dystopian novels.
An amazing end to this brilliant series. There were times I was screaming in anger, crying with sadness, and slamming my fists in frustration. I loved this series and now must find something else from Neal Shusterman to read.
If you like dystopian books, you should try this one, you won’t be disappointed.
Wow. Another amazing book in the series. I don’t want to give anything away, so I’m just going to say that I continue to love this series and the narrator on the audio.
The following book trailer is AMAZING, but just so you know, it could give spoilers if you haven’t read the first two books. It was directed by Jarrod Shusterman.
Book Trailer for Unsouled
**If you haven’t read Unwind, there may be spoilers in the following review.**
Book 2 in the Unwind series continues to follow the story of Connor, Risa, and Lev along with a few new and interesting characters. There’s Nelson, a “parts pirate,” determined to track down Connor and turn him over to the Juvenile Authority for “unwinding,” Starkey, a power hungry kid who wants to usurp Connor and take control, and even Cam, a teenager created using the parts from various unwound kids. They call Cam a “rewind” but he is like Frankenstein and he doesn’t even know if he is “real.” The chapters alternate between different character’s POVs and the narrator does a good job giving them different voices and personalities. In between chapters are actual news articles about organ harvesting and abandoned and “feral” teens. (The only thing annoying about that is hearing the narrator spell out the entire websites where the articles are found, something you wouldn’t have to read yourself and would probably gloss over.)
This series continues to twist your expectations in new ways. I loved this just as much, if not more than the first one. The plot twists at the end made me jump right into book 3.
In a not-so-distant future, the pro-choice and pro-life forces went to war. The compromise that ended the war was The Bill of Life. Under this bill, human life is protected from the moment of conception until the age of 13. Between the ages of 13 & 17, parents can choose to have their children “unwound”. Unwinding is a process that harvests ninety-something percent of the body and then transplants the parts into other people’s bodies. Supposedly, this means the child doesn’t die but lives on divided into the bodies of other people.
Three children selected for unwinding for various reasons come together in this story, Connor, Risa & Lev. The reasons they became unwinds vary as much as their outlooks on life, but they are thrown together by circumstances and must find a way to survive together.
WOW. I loved this book. The plot is complex and exciting, the characters are flawed (in other words, human), and the circumstances are believable. The idea of unwinding is just terrible, but somehow it is common practice in this world. There are a lot of details I won’t mention because I wouldn’t want to spoil this book. But, the most intense and disturbing are the moments the reader witnesses an unwinding – chilling. And all the more so in the audio version. The voices and the technique the narrator uses fit the situation perfectly.
I love the story, the narration, everything about this book. I purchased the next 3 books in the series and have already started listening to book 2 – UnWholly.