Narrator: Katie Schorr
Published by Harper Audio on April 24, 2012
Length: 11 hours, 2 minutes
Source: Purchased through Audible
Sixteen-year-old Janelle Tenner is used to having a lot of responsibility. She balances working as a lifeguard in San Diego with an intense academic schedule. Janelle's mother is bipolar, and her dad is a workaholic FBI agent, which means Janelle also has to look out for her younger brother, Jared.
And that was before she died...and is brought back to life by Ben Michaels, a mysterious, alluring loner from her high school. When she discovers a strange clock that seems to be counting down to the earth's destruction, Janelle learns she has twenty-four days to figure out how to stop the clock and save the planet.
I made a joke a few days ago that this review would be nothing by WTF moments, because this book starts out reasonably crazy and just escalates from there. It is all logical and makes sense, but there were so many moments that I didn’t see coming. While the pace is perfect and I loved the mystery and budding romance, my favorite part of the book is Janelle’s relationship with her brother. She’s stepped in to be his parent, like so many other teens in YA, and the book really explores what that means for them. This is the relationship that I am most looking forward to seeing in the sequel.
My only complaint with Unraveling is that there is not enough of an emotional punch. The first major death left me shocked and sad, but not devastated. The second major death, which was of a character I loved, was presented so quickly that I barely had time to react to it. This is probably because the end in general is resolved incredibly quickly. I felt that how things ended with the “bad guy” was the easy way out of a situation that could have explored a more complicated and interesting dynamic. In the end, while it wasn’t a happy ending, it did leave me satisfied and I look forward the next book in the series.
Favorite Moment: The first time Ben tells Janelle that he loves her. Their declarations of love were endearing and specific to them without ever feeling cheesy.
WTF Moment: The first death (for shock value), but really, I could have picked any moment in this book.
Overall: A fast-paced sci-fi novel that brings crazy to a whole new level.
Narrator: Katie Schorr does an excellent job of conveying the immediacy of the situation and perfectly captures Janelle’s reactions to many insane situations. It would have been easy for the narrator to be over-dramatic and I appreciate that she holds back, while still delivering an excellent performance.