Author: Elizabeth Norris
Published: April 24, 2012
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Source: Bought from Fullybooked
Category: Sci-Fi, Romance, Dystopia
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Two days before the start of her junior year, seventeen-year-old Janelle Tenner is hit by a pickup truck and killed—as in blinding light, scenes of her life flashing before her, and then nothing. Except the next thing she knows, she's opening her eyes to find Ben Michaels, a loner from her high school whom Janelle has never talked to, leaning over her. And even though it isn't possible, she knows—with every fiber of her being—that Ben has somehow brought her back to life.
But her revival, and Ben's possible role in it, is only the first of the puzzles that Janelle must solve. While snooping in her FBI agent father's files for clues about her accident, she uncovers a clock that seems to be counting down to something—but to what? And when someone close to Janelle is killed, she can no longer deny what's right in front of her: Everything that's happened—the accident, the murder, the countdown clock, Ben's sudden appearance in her life—points to the end of life as she knows it. And as the clock ticks down, she realizes that if she wants to put a stop to the end of the world, she's going to need to uncover Ben's secrets—and keep from falling in love with him in the process.
**WARNING: OVERFLOWING FRUSTRATIONS BELOW**
Unraveling is SOOOO frustrating.
What was that I just read? I don't want to even entertain the thought that I just wasted my time reading it because I would have liked it for all I know. But seriously, this book just frustrated the hell out of me.
I thought Unraveling is the Sci-Fi version of Twilight. Why you ask? The similarities are so obvious. Truck accident, an FBI agent dad, mysterious guy with some kind of a power, how the girl tries to figure the guy out, they fall in love. How can you be more Twilight-y than that? But the first part was really intriguing and the prose was an easy breeze to go through so I persevered even though am really not digging it. I thought the whole "resurrection from the dead" would lead to something big but apparently, it led to something FRUSTRATING. Gaaah.
Unidentified (gruesomely melted) dead people are all over the place and these experienced FBI agents couldn't figure it out until Janelle's father was killed. She started playing an FBI agent which is totally irritating because dude, you are not trained and you are not meant for this. Let the cops do their job! Janelle tries to give justice to his father's death so she goes to a party to get drunk and drags her over-used best friend to make sure she wouldn't wake up in a random car with her undies almost off her. Gaaaah. What would she even do without Alex? She depends everything on him while all she does is make out with Ben and let her little brother go to school in the middle of an earthquake. She even had the decency to go to Disneyland! How can one person with a soul goes to Disneyland and have fun when her father was just killed? I just don't understand that! Plus, how can Eleanor and Park be banned when this book has so much cursing, like every line??
So the Earth will eventually collide with another universe because apparently, Ben and company are from another intergalactic Earth. They kept opening portals so they could go home that eventually caused natural disasters to slowly destroy Earth. They figured out who killed her J's father, where those unidentified bodies are coming from and how to solve the upcoming apocalypse but at what cost? Oh God. How can Janelle leave without Jared in the midst of the universe's destruction? I wouldn't leave my family if I were in her shoes but she goes on a superhero mode and make out with Ben. Even after she lost her best friend, she still thinks of her boyfriend. She didn't even try to find her mother!! In all those mayhem, all she could think of is her alien boyfriend.
I gave Unraveling two stars for two reasons: 1) I respect and appreciated Norris' hard work in trying to create a story that is bigger than anyone of us. The attempt of making a story with a promising premise is visible only it failed on the main character's development. And 2) I liked and enjoyed the Sci-Fi aspect especially the black hole traveling from one universe to another. That is just totally cool.
"Humans have precious few instincts, but that's because we don't listen to them. We let logic and knowledge get in the way. My dad always said that when instincts are at war with something society has taught you, listen to your instincts first and ask questions later."