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4.48  ·  Rating details ·  56 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Head down. Eyes down. Don’t make a scene.

John Hunter’s future will be determined by a single test – the Genetic Fitness Evaluation. Acceptance, opportunity, love – it’s all his for the taking if he passes. But if he fails he will be branded as an Unfit, imprisoned in Emerson Asylum, and his life will be all but over.
Paperback, 408 pages
Published April 7th 2020 by Immortal Works
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Average rating 4.48  · 
Rating details
 ·  56 ratings  ·  36 reviews

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Molly Fennig
Jan 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

5/5 stars. You need to read this book. 

Having grown up devouring and loving dystopian novels, I am often critical of their cliches, abstract and unoriginal social critiques, unrealistic or incomplete world building, and more. That being said, this book is everything a dystopian, or any kind of book, should be. 

The characterization and world-building are amazing. There is enough to draw the reader in but not too much that it takes away from the p
Leighellen Landskov
Gosh, this was a great little read! This book is un-putdownable. I devoured it in two sittings. I love dystopian novels and when the book was described as a cross between Shawshank and Handmaids Tale, I knew I was in for a joyride. It’s also a little unnerving to be reading a post pandemic world novel in the middle of a world wide pandemic but it also made it feel more real.

The story begins in a gritty world divided after a pandemic destroyed almost all of the worlds population. In an effort to
Jun 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was SOOOO GOOD YALL! This world was so crazy. From the first chapter I was hooked and had to see where this story would end. I loved everything about this book. Everything was written so excellent and that says a lot because I'm definitely a book snob. The characters, world and entire story was just so great. I loved it! So much happens, so many edge of your seat moments. I really enjoyed the twists as well. The ending was so intense I couldn't put it down and stayed up super late to f ...more
May 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely love dystopian novels and when the author offered to send me this book I absolutely said yes. Now having read it, I'm so thankful I did!

While reading a post pandemic book during an actual real life pandemic may not be for everyone, I still really enjoyed the plot of this story. It begins with when the world is divided after a horrible pandemic literally destroys a good majority of the world's population. So the leaders of Haven, in a great effort to control from it happening again,
Jul 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was such a cool book! I definitely get the comparisons of Shawshank Redemption and The Handmaid's Tale and Romeo and Juliet. It's a really unique dystopian world, one where people can be deemed "unfit" because of a physical or mental disability and forcibly sterilized. Honestly, the best dystopian worlds come from concepts that actually do seem like they could be good ideas in theory. I get why they would think the concept of creating a stronger human gene pool by only allowing those who ar ...more
Risa Nyman
Apr 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Reading Unfit by Karma Chesnut is an amazing experience. The author brings us deep into a world and time that is devoid of humanity as the darkest nature of people rules.

Yet, through this harshness and cruelty, Ms. Chesnut creates two spectacular characters, John Hunter and Morgan Loughlin, who are the antithesis of the world they were born into. They represent the goodness and humanity in people that is still possible. Their struggle to find so
Pete Fanning
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Okay, I'm not too happy with then ending, but only because I didn't want it to end! I kept counting down the pages, hoping that--well, I won't give it away.

Where to begin? When I got this ARC I saw the word count and sighed. I don't normally read dystopian fiction and I was thinking it would be tough to get through. I could not have been more wrong. The characters were so well done, the foreshadowing perfect. I'm seeing a lot of Shawshank comparisons, which I felt too, but something about this
Melissa Hansen
Mar 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was so impactful and thought-provoking, I've decided to write a more in depth review of it on my blog. I was drawn into this haunting world of eugenics, and especially the relationship between John and Morgan. Their devotion and love for each other brought an inspiring and refreshing lift to the heavy themes. Sometimes the story was hard to read, but it's the kind if book that can change readers and the world for the better. Karma's writing style and voice is exceptional and added to t ...more
May 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
While this book is darker than most fiction I’m drawn to, I’m glad I read it. A mix of Neil Schustermans Scythe, and Stephen King’s Shawshank Redemption, this book really hit some deep themes and made me think. While it began as most dystopians do, with the concept of “what if” then portraying the world we know as adopting a new moral code and becoming unrecognizable, it quickly began to grow more frightening as real historical elements began to come into play. Eugenics, polygamy, internment cam ...more
Amy Carpenter
Feb 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I meant to read this book over time, but, once I started, there was nowhere to put it down. So I ended up reading the whole thing in one night.

Unfit tells the story of John, an intelligent man with a lot of potential living in a society where people who fail certain physical, intellectual, or blood portions of an exam are deemed unfit. They are then castrated and cast off from any real potential in society. He flunks the blood portion.

This story is beautifully written. It offers so much more th
Karin Biggs
Feb 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
UNFIT to me felt like Shawshank Redemption meets Handmaid's Tale. These are not two comps that would normally drive met to read a story, but Karma did such a good job with her plot and writing, that I found myself enjoying the book more than I expected to...(this is coming from a girl who prefers YA scifi/fantasy romances.) And I must say, John and Morgan (the two leads) deliver quite an epic romance in a dark, dystopic setting. Their story is what kept me going, hoping for a 'happily-ever-after ...more
Bree Moore
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: authors-i-know
Unfit is a powerfully dark post-apocalyptic story where the future of all citizens is determined by the quality of their genes. I thought the somewhat Romeo and Juliet type romance would be stereotypical, but I'm happy to report it's anything but! Unfit is also refreshingly diverse, realistically depicting an autistic side-character who became very dear to my heart. I am really looking forward to the second book! ...more
Derick Dalton
Jan 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Here are my thoughts after reading an ARC of Unfit by Karma Chestnut.
Spoiler free.

Unfit is Gattaca meets Shawshank Redemption.
It's a dystopian Gone with the Wind, but this time with a heroic heroine.
In our era of divisiveness and science illiteracy, Unfit will be motivating to readers keen on building strong families and communities and supporting democracy. But fair warning, it's not fictional enough to be a comfortable read.

Why not three stars?
The heroes are deeper and more faceted than those
Felix Dimaro
Mar 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received an Advance Reader Copy of Unfit from the author, Karma Chestnut, which I am thankful for. I let her know when I saw the page count (roughly 400 pages in ebook form) that it might take me two or three weeks to finish reading (I’m a slow reader), but I wound up reading the book in less than a week. That is a rare feat for me, and it says a lot about this book.

Set in a Dystopian future nearly a hundred years from the present time, we meet a cast of characters in a city called Haven. The
Mona Kabbani
Jun 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
“My name is Theodore. These are my sins.”
John Hunter has been declared an Unfit. A title given to those who invoke the fear of a second plague striking and taking out another chunk of the population. A title given to those with disease or disabilities. A title that brands you forever as an outcast to a society all too scared of extinction. But John Hunter has a family. Or at least the beginnings of one. Will he fight against his title, his societal demotion to be with the one he loves? Or will h
Mar 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received this ARC in exchange for my honest review...

I have a love affair with Dystopian novels, but sometimes they get repetitive or commercialized. When I was approached about reading Unfit I was just coming off of reading a different debut Dystopian novel. So I was definitely in the mood to continue the trend and I said you know what, yes I will read this. I’m glad I did, as I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. It was really well written. The descriptions and dialogue were w
Celeste Harte
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I got an ARC of this book, and admittedly, I don't usually like dystopia, but I LOVED this one!

CW: this book features many difficult themes such as suicide, abortion, and derogatory terms for disabled people.

After 90% of the world is killed by plague, society is centered around being Fit or Unfit, and you're evaluated based on things like your lineage, academic level, and physical condition. John Hunter wants nothing but the perfect life for him and his wife, but all of that gets thrown off the
Apr 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is an emotionally intense book. Very well constructed, very satisfying to get through, but man is it a heck of a ride through a world of straight-up nightmare fuel!

Now, what gives you nightmares might very well not be the same as what gives me nightmares. But there are very few books that made me put them down partway through, not because they were *bad*, but simply because I needed some breathing room before I could finish them.

That does not, however, mean I won't recommend it! I can't get
Scott William Taylor
Apr 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
One of the most challenging events in any new family's life is preparing for the birth of a baby. Imagine facing this exciting, yet daunting arrival while living in a dystopian hell-scape where humans deemed unfit are imprisoned and sterilized. In Karma Chesnut's debut novel, "Unfit" a family faces laws, family pressures and conditions--barbaric by today's standards, but considered reasonable at times through history--to try and find a way to be together.

Chestnut crafts a terrifying post-pandemi
Rin Serker
Apr 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC for an honest review. . .

Defiantly a book for these times. A compelling read.

In this post apocalyptic world I felt hope, heartbreak, determination.

Living in a pandemic has definitely opened my eyes to how brilliant this book is.

I have heard multiplied people saying that we need to be outside among things that grow especially at this time as so many cases keep popping up. I wholeheartedly agree. That is one of the reasons I really like I am drawn to the main character, John.

Mar 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Solid, interesting, fast-paced retelling of Romeo & Juliet in a creepy and believable future where eugenics are the big baddie. Definitely a fun one for fans of scifi and thrillers like Divergent, Hunger Games, and Maze Runner.
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book is amazing! I started reading it and couldn’t put it down. I was so sad to finish it because there was no more.
Karma Chesnut
Nov 06, 2020 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
UNFIT is an all-too-realistic reimagining of a world built on the principles of eugenics and the Darwinian creed "survival of the fittest." ...more
Jan 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This starts out as a love story of John & Morgan. But then we learn more of the post plague world in which they live. Interesting and disturbing as the events hit close to our history. Ultimately, reinforces that power corrupts and the evil that people will do to protect that power. Good book!
Apr 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My first time reading this author and I love the world she has created. This is a page-turner with a world and characters that I couldn’t get enough of.

I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
Stephenie Peterson
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Unfit is a unique story full of characters I cared about. The plot kept me on my toes. The world-building pulled me in. I am so glad I had a chance to read this ARC before publication. It's definitely worth reading! ...more
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𝘉𝘺 𝘒𝘢𝘳𝘮𝘢 𝘊𝘩𝘦𝘴𝘯𝘶𝘵

𝘎𝘦𝘯𝘳𝘦: 𝘋𝘺𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘱𝘪𝘢𝘯 𝘛𝘩𝘳𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘳
𝘗𝘶𝘣 𝘋𝘢𝘵𝘦: 𝘈𝘱𝘳𝘪𝘭 7, 2020
𝘗𝘢𝘨𝘦𝘴: 349

𝘛𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘣𝘰𝘰𝘬 𝘸𝘢𝘴 a 𝘧𝘢𝘴𝘵 𝘱𝘢𝘤𝘦𝘥 𝘥𝘺𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘱𝘪𝘢𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘳𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘦𝘳, 𝘸𝘪𝘵𝘩 𝘵𝘸𝘪𝘴𝘵𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘯𝘴. 𝘚𝘰𝘮𝘦𝘵𝘪𝘮𝘦𝘴 𝘩𝘦𝘢𝘷𝘺, 𝘪𝘵 𝘢𝘭𝘴𝘰 𝘩𝘢𝘥 𝘦𝘭𝘦𝘮𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘴 𝘰𝘧 𝘧𝘢𝘮𝘪𝘭𝘺, 𝘧𝘳𝘪𝘦𝘯𝘥𝘴𝘩𝘪𝘱 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘩𝘰𝘱𝘦! 𝘐𝘧 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘦𝘯𝘫𝘰𝘺 𝘚𝘤𝘪 𝘧𝘪𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 / 𝘋𝘺𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘱𝘪𝘢𝘯𝘴 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘯 𝘐 𝘳𝘦𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘮𝘦𝘯𝘥 𝘤𝘩𝘦𝘤𝘬𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘜𝘯𝘧𝘪𝘵. 𝘐𝘵 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘢𝘭𝘴𝘰 𝘪𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘳𝘺 𝘵𝘢𝘬𝘦𝘴 𝘱𝘭𝘢𝘤𝘦 𝘢𝘧𝘵𝘦𝘳 𝘢 𝘱𝘢𝘯𝘥𝘦𝘮𝘪𝘤 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘪𝘵 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘱𝘶𝘣𝘭𝘪𝘴𝘩𝘦𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘺𝘦𝘢𝘳!

Thank You to the author for sending me a copy of her novel. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

May 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
I am truly grateful to have received this dystopian gem from Karma Chesnut and Immortal Works! This post-pandemic world delivered an updated version of Romeo and Juliet, mixed with The Handmaid's Tale, set within the confines of a tyrannical government that reminded me a bit of Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.

"How does that all weave together?" you may ask.

It just does. Because Chesnut is a world-building, character-driven wordsmith, ok?

I keep forgetting this is a debut novel because it was just th
Wow! This book is purely amazing!
The writing is excellent and the story is breathtaking.

A dystopian world long after our era, a society divided, a great love story between John and Morgan, awesome secondary characters.

There are happy moments, thrilling moments, sad moments. There are mysteries, suspens, action, love. A perfect combination.

YOU, yes you, the one reading this review, you should definitely read this book.
And YOU, yes you, the author, you should definitely write what happens next,
May 06, 2021 rated it really liked it
I was given a free copy of this book for an honest review

I enjoyed the story and the concept of this book. It reminded me of the film “equilibrium” in some ways with a dystopian edge, a ruling elite and completely dominated subservient populace. I would have liked the back story to have been explored a lot more but hopefully this will be explained in the second book

I was a little disappointed by the ending. The intensity of the storyline builds and just sort of ends. There isn’t really a cliffha
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Karma Chesnut is a writer, mother, anthropologist, and author of the novel Unfit. Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, she now lives in California with her husband and their three daughters; the snake-hunter, the princess, and the baby. She has a bachelor's degree in Anthropology from Brigham Young University. ...more

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