The Good, The Bad, and The Spoilers: Unbound

So, I took a break from my Sarah J Maas binge and went back to the world of Unwind… I still really love these books!

In the New York Times bestselling Unwind Dystology—Unwind, UnWholly, UnSouled, and UnDivided—Neal Shusterman thrilled readers with the story of a society that deals with its out-of-control teens by “unwinding” them—transplanting more than 99% of their bodies into other people.

In the latest installment of this sequence, Shusterman—along with collaborators Terry Black, Michelle Knowlden, Brendan Shusterman, and Jarrod Shusterman—explores even more aspects of a world that has accepted the unacceptable. These short stories examine the world of unwinding in a way we haven’t seen before, providing a fresh framework, new characters, and a different take on some events. summary

As I mentioned in my Scythe review, I read Unwind back in middle school and it instantly became one of my favorite novels. I was worried that the rest of the series wouldn’t be as good, but all of it is PERFECTION! (seriously, I highly recommend!) Fast forward four years and I saw Unbound at my local library and had to pick it up! The novellas are great and really expand upon the characters and world of Unwind.

The Good
Old characters and new characters—ALL THE CHARACTERS! I was so happy that many novellas focused on past characters. Whether it be Nelson’s past (something I never thought I’d be interested in) or Roland as a child, I loved getting to better understand these characters and how they became the characters we know. The new characters were also great and served to allow us to read about many different times and settings! I really loved the novella about young Risa, but when Risa was actually just a background character to the narrator.

Timeline: I was super excited that Unbound gave us a glimpse at not only the present and future, but also the past! It has a novel set before Unwinding was accepted! This was such a good decision because it just built upon the already fabulous world building and made this future feel even more realistic!

Different Settings: I’m really happy that we got to see many different settings from the world of Unwind. Just like the switching time periods, it really helps the reader to understand the world and makes everything seem more realistic!

The Bad
I guess the only “negative” is that some of the stories were more interesting than others. This seems obvious for any novel full of short stories— not all of them will be everyone’s favorite. There weren’t any stories that I just wanted to skip, and I enjoyed all of them to some extant but some were better than others.

I have loved all of Neal Shusterman’s novels that I’ve read and his Unwind series is one of my favorites! I highly recommend his entire Unwind series because it’s a crazy good emotional roller coaster! The novellas are not essential but I still love them! I recommend at least reading Unstrung, it gives Lev’s character much more development and made him one of my favorite characters!



Being honest, I don’t have many spoilers to talk about… There’s only one real “spoiler” I want to talk about and that is Wil. Wil being unwound broke my heart the first time I read Unstrung and I cried again when I read it a second time! It’s such a sad death but gives Lev the motivation he needs to become a clapper. This is SO IMPORTANT to Lev’s development, someone who’s character development is my favorite in any novel!


  1. Oooh! I still need to read the others in this series! I loved Unwind!


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