Author: Sarah Rees Brennan
Series: The Lynburn Legacy,
Genre: YA Fiction, YA Paranormal
Publisher: Random House BFYR
Source: Review copy from publisher
“Kami Glass is in love with someone she's never met—a boy she's talked to in her head since she was born. This has made her an outsider in the sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale, but she has learned ways to turn that to her advantage. Her life seems to be in order, until disturbing events begin to occur. There has been screaming in the woods and the manor overlooking the town has lit up for the first time in 10 years. . . . The Lynburn family, who ruled the town a generation ago and who all left without warning, have returned. Now Kami can see that the town she has known and loved all her life is hiding a multitude of secrets—and a murderer. The key to it all just might be the boy in her head. The boy she thought was imaginary is real, and definitely and deliciously dangerous.”
Unspoken is the first book in the new series The Lynburn Legacy by Sarah Rees Brennan.
Kami Glass is known in her little town of Sorry-in-the-Vale as a little bit eccentric and a maybe not to right in the head girl. Since Kami can remember she has had an invisible friend in her head, a boy who she can talk to, who always has been there for her and knows her most intimate secrets. Kami considers him (Jared) her best friend and number one confident.
Kami’s life is about to change forever. The most infamous family in Sorry-in-the-Vale, The Lynburn family, has returned to town, and with their arrival strange occurrences start to happen in the town that once was a calm and peaceful place. But the biggest change in Kami’s life is the discovery that her imaginary friend wasn’t as imaginary as she thought, Jared is a flesh and bone boy that is in town to stay.
I love when books surprise me an Unspoken did just that. Unspoken was nothing of what I was expecting, it was a lot more and all in a good sense.
I loved to read a YA book in which the heroine is strong, smart and doesn’t need a boy to move her universe. Kami is like that and more, she is also witty, caring and with a sense of humor that will have you laughing out loud and wishing you had had a friend like her in school. Kami knows she is different but that doesn’t deter her to be the best she can be, she has friends, she has fun, she is a good student, she runs the school’s newspaper, Kami lives her life to the fullest and is proud of who she is. I wish many more heroines in this genre were like her.
Jared uses a bad boy disguise as a protective shell; that works with everybody else but not with Kami. He knows Kami’s most intimate secrets but she also knows his, he cannot fool her. Jared has had a hard life; growing up with an abusive father and a disinterested mother wasn’t easy, his only real constant in his life has been Kami. But as with Kami Jared also didn’t know she was real.
Kami and Jared relationship is very complex; from the cradle they have shared every single moment of their lives, they know each other better than everybody else and there is no secret between them. That is easy say and done when they other person is in your head and you think is just an imaginary friend, one that has always been there for you. But when suddenly that person is real things are not as easy or as comfortable as they were in your head. A relationship that was easy going and comforting becomes intolerable and intrusive. Getting to terms with these new events is not easy for Kami and Jared, also it’s very hard to know if what they feel for the other person is real or is simply a reflection of the other person’s feeling.
The secondary characters in Unspoken shine with their own light; they are not fillers but important parts in the story. They are so well developed that you can only like them and want to know more about them all.
Kami’s friends Angela and Holly are very different from Kami and from each other, but at the same time they complement each other perfectly. They also bring diversity and conflict to the story.
Another thing I really liked about Unspoken is the important role Kami’s family plays in her life; she has a good relationship with her parents and they are involved in her life. They are not obtrusive, but they are there for her. Her father was to die for. I loved how he was able to impart his fatherly opinion in a way that was always humorous and respectful.
The mystery had me guessing until the end. There were some things I guess right and others that really surprised me. The plot is well developed and well paced; I can honestly say I was glued to the pages from beginning to end.
The setting is gothic and magical without being overly dark, but with a perfect balance to make it unique and completely original.
Sarah Rees Brennan writing is spotless and the characters personalization and development is one of the best I’ve seen in a YA book.
The end of the book is a cliffhanger of sorts, it’s not a throw-the-book-to-the-wall cliffhanger but one that will leave you a little big heartbroken and eagerly awaiting for the next book of the series to be release next year. Next year!! *sighs*
Unspoken was my first book by Sarah Rees Brennan but I can’t guarantee you it won’t be my last. I’ll be stalking the bookstores for the next installment of this series.
I recommend Unspoken to all YA lovers or to whoever wants to read a book with smooth and fluid writing, a unique setting, well-developed characters, and a good dose of mystery and humor.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Stars
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