Balzer + Bray
Young Adult, Science Fiction, Romance
April 24, 2012
Two days before her junior year, Janelle Tenner is hit by a pickup truck and killed—as in blinding light, her life flashing before her, 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 though it isn’t possible, she knows with every fiber of her being that Ben has brought her back to life.
But her reincarnation, 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 countdown clock, Ben’s sudden appearance in her life—points to the end of life as she knows it. As the clock ticks down, she realizes that if she wants to put a stop to the end of the world, she’s needs to uncover Ben’s secrets—and keep from falling in love with him in the process.
UNRAVELING is a gripping story of one girl’s fight to save her family, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming.
I find myself blown away by Ms. Norris’ storytelling. Unraveling is an epic tale that will resonate with fans of apocalyptic action-filled fiction! My mind became enraptured as I was drawn into the life of Janelle Tenner. I really like this girl; she’s smart, independent and gutsy! Let’s not forget she bites the dust in the first chapter yet comes back gunning for answers instead of wilting like a simpering flower. It’s her no-nonsense attitude that shines throughout the pages. A countdown begins, she has no clue what will happen at the end of that countdown but she fights to solve the clues handed to her as the story goes along. Janelle Tenner doesn’t let friend, foe or love stand in her way as she chases down clues surrounding her resurrection and how it correlates with the strange things happening around her.
Ben, the boy with the beautiful dark eyes and mysterious gifts may have the answers but he’s not talking. Janelle and Ben have this really beautiful relationship. It’s something sweet, you can feel the connection between them throughout the story but you also get the feeling of this relationship being so close but just out of reach; after all it seems their world may be coming to an end.
Throughout Unraveling I could see glimpses of some of my favorite shows and stories. You know you never really forget the shows you loved in High School and one of my all-time favorites was Roswell. Yes, I even bought the book series. :) Unraveling gave me that same out-of-this-world giddy feeling I had when I watched the very first episode of Roswell. Although, I have to say that Janelle is way more of a kick-ass character than Liz Parker ever could be. I would say Janelle is an excellent cross between Liz Parker and Olivia Dunham from Fringe. Janelle can keep her emotional cool like Olivia while investigating but put her heart on her sleeve like Liz when it counts.
Unraveling is one super cool mystery! Ms. Norris’ plot takes many twists and turns some predictable but most not. I like being surprised and Ms. Norris did that in spades. Unraveling may be a Young Adult novel but it deals with adult subjects much like most of today’s teens do. Elizabeth Norris manages to weave witty teenagers into a savvy plot that will keep the reader coming back for more with Unraveling! The cataclysmic ending had me tearing through the pages hoping for a happily ever after but fearing the worst. That is the best and worst feeling when getting to the last pages of a book you have just devoured in around four hours. Unraveling builds up to an ending that does not disappoint! Life, death, love, and suspenseful mysteries have never looked better than they do in Unraveling. I could not be happier with my book selection and I hope that Ms. Norris has more stories like this one in her because I definitely want more!