Shane Blackheart's Reviews > Unchained

Unchained by Helen Hardt
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it was ok

***SPOILERS***
This book definitely has an interesting story, but the delivery fell short for me. Long review, so hold on. Also note, this is just my personal opinion and in no way is an attempt to say anything bad about the author or her talents. This may have just not been her best book or series. Spoilers, so beware.

The first part begins with Dante, a vampire who had been imprisoned for many years. He is stumbling around the city looking for blood, and he ends up in a hospital to meet the woman that will ultimately possess him for the entirety of the book: Erin. They become absolutely obsessed with each other from first eye contact, and there is a deeper connection between them that hasn't happened between a vampire and human for some time. That's the basic premise from the start.

Now, beyond this, the story fell apart for me. There is a lot of filler, or so it felt like. Dante goes here. Then he leaves. Then Erin goes here, then here, then leaves, then goes here. Dante is constantly uptight and arrogant, and he's suspicious over his grandfather for who knows what reason. By the end of the third part, I still have no idea what his problem with his grandfather was, or even why we are supposed to suspect... something... from the man. Unless his reason for anger was not justified and it escaped me.

My other problem -- I'll just say this: abbreviations for words. Oh man. Just... I couldn't. Certain words were abbreviated that just made me stop and I groaned (vamp, being one). It took me away from the seriousness of the story. I honestly wasn't a fan of the general writing or style, but that is my problem and not the author's. I only mention it as it was a big factor in my rating.

Now, I do get the back and forth, hot and cold between Dante and Erin after reading through the book in its entirety. But, I have to admit, it's extremely frustrating in the way it's written. It goes back to my point of the constant back and forth, person A goes here, and then goes there, and then person B goes here, and then decides a minute later to change locations for some reason or another, usually an upset. I was getting whiplash from all the moving around. And then we get another mystery introduced that hit out of nowhere, about Erin having mysterious marks on her leg? But, what I don't understand, is if she's supposedly bonded to someone else, how can she be bonded to Dante? I was under the impression the bond was pretty solid and existed between a fated human and their vampire, but... oi. I'm confused even now. Maybe it's explored in later books, but... confusion.

The story has promise, but I wasn't inclined to read any more of the series. I feel like the story was dragged on for the purpose of it being longer, at least, that's what it felt like to me. The cliffhanger was just so epically huge and after reading the first three, nothing felt good about the ending. 'Read more books to finish the story' basically. And I understand how a series works, but in book series I've read before, I at least felt some sort of completion at the end of each book, something was wrapped up in some way, and while in the 3-in-1 version of this book we did get one 'kind of' answer to the story (the explanation for the blood bond was also confusing and I felt it could have been explained or worked out better), I'm just so... underwhelmed? I'm not sure. I didn't even really connect with any of the characters. If nothing else, I felt bad for the grandfather because he seems to be getting a lot of flack for just wanting to be helpful or keep Dante safe. But Dante? My goodness man, just SAY something. Not everything has to be some wild secret! I get why you might be stuck in a teen's mindset, but speak!

I don't like leaving negative reviews, and this definitely isn't a 'bad' review per se, but I personally did not like how the book was written or the pacing. I did enjoy what story there was to enjoy to a point, but I wish the author had at least moved things along a bit better and left out the extremely energetic characters' traveling. If the ending had been more fulfilling in some way and not as confusing, I'd probably have given the story more of a chance. But maybe serials just aren't my thing.

As always though, kudos to the author for writing a story and getting it out there. I'm sure Helen has other wonderful books, and I'm sure many will enjoy this one where I did not.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
May 28, 2019 – Shelved

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