Unwind is set in the future. There was a second civil war because of the strong and violence opinions of those who were pro-life and pro-choice. The war ended with a contract that both sides agreed on. The agreement was that women couldn’t abort a baby when it was still in the stomach. However, when the child reaches his or her teen years, the parents can choose to “abort” the teen then. Instead of actually killing the child, they unwind him or her. Which is basically harvesting their body parts for people who need them later on. The reasoning is that since the body parts are still living, the teen isn’t technically killed. In addition, if the parent can not raise their child to their teen years they can choose to “stork” the baby by leaving the child at the doorstep of another family’s home. The baby then becomes that family’s responsibility. Unwind basically revolves around three teens who were chosen to be unwinded. Connor, who’s parents didn’t want him anymore because of bad behavior and fights. Risa, who’s an orphan and the state ward no longer wanted to keep her because of lack of excellence in being skilled. And finally Lev, who’s family is deeply religious and wealthy. He is being “donated” because his family believes that 10% of everything should be given to God and Lev is the tenth youngest child. For most of the book, we see Connor, Risa, and Lev trying to survive without being unwinded.
I just loved this book so much. The story line is really bold and unique. And not only is it really interesting but the way the author pursues morals and ethics on the issue is so cool. The book essentially explores the lines between life and death and everything in between. I remember that I couldn’t stop reading it. I finished it in just a few days. And that’s the same for the sequel Unwholly. It’s just so intriguing and well-paced that you just want to keep going. I couldn’t put either book down. And when I was done I recommended it to all my friends.
The format of the book is different from a lot of other books. Unwind switches between the perspectives of the three main characters. I can’t remember if there were more character’s perspectives shown in Unwind but there definitely were more in Unwholly. I didn’t mind at all, in fact I think it helped make the book more intriguing. But I know that some people didn’t feel that way. I however feel like Neal Shusterman had to do that because this book is such a strong work describing different people’s ethics and morals that he needed to show how every person thought. It’s really your past and personality that shapes how you think. And I think that Neal wanted to show how each person thought so we don’t lose out on why the other side thought one way or another. And you can only do that by seeing the world from that person’s eyes. However, I didn’t think that it took the connection away from the reader and the characters. I was in sync and felt everything the character felt.
All in all, Unwind is an excellent book. I think what I loved most about it was how Neal showed so many different opinions on this one issue and still made everything have so much feeling. I had a lot of emotions when I was reading the book. I also loved how it made you think of what life and death really means. I would really recommend this book to everyone. If you like dystopian novels then you definitely should try it out. Also, anyone who is into abortions, life, or political issues should try this book. I hope you guys read it!