I don't often post reviews of books that I got from the library or that I bought on my own, but this one just HAD to be posted because of how much I loved it. Now, months after I read 'Unspoken', I FINALLY had room in my blog schedule to post the review:
Release Date: September 11, 2012
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Series: The Lynburn Legacy #1
Review Source: eBook from library
Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
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?
I enjoyed the Demon’s Lexicon books by Sarah Rees Brennan, so this one was always on my TBR list. Then I kept hearing such great things about ‘Unspoken’, and I was itching to get my hands on it. My library finally got the ebook, and I waited (im)patiently for my digital hold to come in. I dropped everything to read ‘Unspoken’, and I’m so glad I did. It rocketed to the top of my favourites of 2012 list, and also to the top of the “holy crap, nooo, why do we have to wait for the next book?!” list.
I think what is so fabulous about this book is that Sarah has taken so many elements that I usually loathe, and has made me love them. How does she do this?! First we have the ultra special magical connection between our heroine and hero. Then we have the makings of a love triangle. Then we have a hero who is incredibly codependent. It all sounds disastrous, and yet I adored it. The connection between Jared and Kami feels incredibly precious, and reading about the two of them and seeing how they’ve been connected all their lives explains a lot about why these two are the way they are. Jared is completely that tortured wannabe bad boy, and yet as we delve into his thoughts we see all the different angles of him. The “love triangle” isn’t wholly developed, but what exists of it really fits the book, and especially makes sense as you delve closer to the end of the book.
Beyond these elements that have been turned on their heads into something fabulous, ‘Unspoken’ has a lot of other things going for it as well. It’s a gothic mystery, with an amazing setting of Sorry-in-the-Vale in the Cotswolds, England. The setting is so incredibly atmospheric, it just works perfectly for the story. The book also has an amazing protagonist in Kami, a spunky journalist who is more than a little bit Veronica Mars-like (you can tell that Sarah is a fan of the show, which is awesome!). If you’ve read Sarah Rees Brennan before then you know that she’s an expert at angst that will make you flail around and cry, but she’s also fabulous at quirky humour. I loved the humourous tone that ‘Unspoken’ had, and the unique characters that filled the pages. There’s also an intensely romantic tone to the story, despite it not featuring any actual romantic relationships. What it does feature amazingly well is friendship and family. I love romance, but too often I think friends and family get the shaft when it comes to YA.
It’s hard to describe exactly what it so compelling about this book, but hopefully I’ve been able to explain just a little bit of why I loved it so much. All of these great aspects I’ve pointed out come together seamlessly in a book that will fill you with all kinds of emotion. I read a lot of books, but this is one of the best examples of a paranormal mystery I’ve read in a long time, and it also features one of the best relationships that I’ve read in a long time. I am anxiously awaiting the second book, 'Untold', which is set to release around September 2013.
I LOVE it, so I'm super disappointed that the covers will be changing.
Find Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan on Goodreads, Book Depository, & Amazon.