Monday, September 17, 2012
Unspoken (The Lynburn Legacy, #1)Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan
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?
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Unspoken was funny as all get out.
It brought back what I loved in HEX HALL and SOCIAL SUICIDE: smart characters, crazy back and forth, as well as conventional YA themes turned on their head. I enjoyed this like you don’t know how much! Why is it protagonists with investigative reporting aspirations are always so funny? Each thing that came out of her mouth was true but funny too. And even if a bit too blunt at times, no one could fault her her reasons, and perhaps that’s another thing I love: how she could be so reasonable about one thing and then another thing and then another thing though it’s likely not how things seemed to the observer.
The best part of this is that it’s a supporting set that actually pull their weight: quirky each of them, but more than that too. Take Angela who isn’t quintessential BFF that though she’ maybe unfairly beautiful, it’s not the only thing she had going for her. She’s not the one who gets in trouble time and again rather she’s sort of the voice of reason (save the fact that she’s a voice gone unheeded a lot, largely because she sounds so lazy!) Or take Holly, initially pegged as a boys’ girl rather than a girls’ girl; my favorite moment is how this fact comes to the attention of Kami, who’s admittedly slightly (more than slightly) judgmental. Then take the boys boys boys! (Yes, please do!) OK, this aspect of the story does fall under the heading of new boy(s) liking the odd girl… but that’s fine too because what’s there not to like? Better is the way things progressed. It is safe to say that smooth sailing? That was absent.
The mystery is half the fun because ONE moment I’m laughing at a particularly witty turn of phrase on her part THEN the next I’m on edge thinking, ‘This is how girls die on slasher films.’ Or, otherwise asking, ‘Did you not pay attention to that stoner dude enumerate the rules in Scream?!’
Because the place? The place was creeps-ville, a little like the one in THE LOTTERY, where everybody knows something but nobody’s telling. And for one reason or another she’s surrounded herself with those who actually don’t know anything! This made for a reading experience that’s so it could get frustrating! Because each discovery actually is a discovery, so that with her, I went, ‘Oh, right. I get it!’ till I was terrified for her, of course.
So, take a girl who has aspirations of investigative glory, then take two boys who are both mysterious and hot, plunk them in a place with a history that’s shrouded in mystery and a little bit of the scary… except make all of them funny… and well, this is me thoroughly entertained. Yes, I loved this. And that’s even given that cliffy because at least here there was some sort of a resolution, just not a complete one. I am definitely looking forward to the next one.
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