Sunday, June 30, 2013

Review: Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

Title: Unspoken
Author: Sarah ReesBrennan
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Series: The Lynburns Legacy #1

Hardcover, 373 pages

Publication:  September 11, 2012 by Random House BFYR

Source: Personal library

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Kami Glass loves someone she’s never met . . . a boy she’s talked to in her head ever since she was born. She wasn’t silent about her imaginary friend during her childhood, and is thus a bit of an outsider in her sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Still, Kami hasn’t suffered too much from not fitting in. She has a best friend, runs the school newspaper, and is only occasionally caught talking to herself. Her life is in order, just the way she likes it, despite the voice in her head.

But all that changes when the Lynburns return.

The Lynburn family has owned the spectacular and sinister manor that overlooks Sorry-in-the-Vale for centuries. The mysterious twin sisters who abandoned their ancestral home a generation ago are back, along with their teenage sons, Jared and Ash, one of whom is eerily familiar to Kami. Kami is not one to shy away from the unknown—in fact, she’s determined to find answers for all the questions Sorry-in-the-Vale is suddenly posing. Who is responsible for the bloody deeds in the depths of the woods? What is her own mother hiding? And now that her imaginary friend has become a real boy, does she still love him? Does she hate him? Can she trust him?

Ever since Kami was little she heard a voice in her head. Her parents didn’t think too much of it, because what kid at a young age didn’t have an imaginary friend? As Kami grew older the voice in her head didn’t go away but grew stronger. Kami had a few friends but none of them were as close as she was with Jared. Kami lives in the small town of Sorry-in-the-Vale, and nothing much ever goes on until the Lynburns returns. The Lynburns were the first family and founders of the town, and even till this day, generations later the family still resides in Sorry-in-the-Vale. The Lynburns are infamous and are feared by the town people, and Kami wants to know why. Kami starts to investigate the Lynburns and during her investigation she stumbles upon an animal sacrifice and a body. Kami thinks the deaths are related to the Lynburns since they occurred at the same time the family arrived back in town. Things get stranger when Kami finds out Jared isn’t an imaginary voice in her head, but a real person…and he happens to be a Lynburn.

If I had to describe Kami in two words, it’d be sarcastic and spunky.  Kami’s voice can be either annoying or funny, and thankfully I found it to be the later. Kami is the type of girl that doesn’t care about being the most popular in school, how many friends she has or attending the hottest parties…she’s pretty content with her life and has a BFF that gets her. Angela  a.k.a the “BFF” even knows about Jared but accepts it as part of Kami’s quirkiness. Kami is pretty confident in everything she does and says but that changes when she’s around Jared.  Since Kami and Jared are linked, they can real each other’s mind/feelings. Kami constantly has to watch what she thinks, trying to maintain a mental wall between her and Jared. It was easier for both of them to deal when they thought the ‘other’ person wasn’t real, and now they’re both trying to cope with the change. They have always been linked, and with the possibility of breaking the link…Kami is all for it if it mean she can actually live her own life independently. Jared on the other hand isn’t happy about it.

Jared has the words “delinquent bad boy” written all over him, from the way he acts, talks to the way he dresses (I mean he has the dark rugged-mysterious look, and rides a motorcycle for crying out loud). When Jared found out that Kami is a real person living in Sorry-in the-Vale, he automatically storms off and tells her to leave him alone but no matter what he can’t avoid her. While Kami struggles with the situation, Jared thinks the reason for their link is because they’re soul mates. Jared even suggests that they date, but Kami is unsure if the feeling for him is real/his mixing with her or her own true feelings. She laughs at the notion of them dating, crushing the idea every time Jared mentions it/or hints it even IF she thinks of it too. I think Jared continually proves himself to Kami, but she always tells him that the two of them being more will NEVER happen. In the end I think she came to terms with her feelings but it was a little too late...we won’t know the true fallout till book 2, UNTOLD. 

UNSPOKEN had all the ingredients for a fun young-adult fantasy-paranormal.  I love the balance between humor and mystery (two things I always look for in a book). Going into UNSPOKEN I didn’t know what to expect because the synopsis didn’t give away much. When I found out about the Lynburns, I was pleasantly surprised because I definitely didn’t anticipate that particular paranormal sector/supernatural to be the feature of the book.  The characters were well-written and had a uniqueness of their own. I especially adored Kami’s friends; Angela who hates pretty much everyone and has an obsession with napping everywhere and anywhere she can. Her brother Rusty was just that brotherly, Holly a newcomer to the group, and the other Lynburn Ash…the total opposite of Jared. UNSPOKEN kept me glued to the book from page one, and kept me guessing till the very end.  I’m like the other fans and didn’t like how the book ended (cliffhanger!) but am looking forward to UNTOLD nonetheless.  I recommend this book to anyone looking for a light paranormal-mystery read. 

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