Narrator: Rebecca Gibel
Series: Uninvited #2
Published by Harper Audio, Harper Teen on February 24, 2015
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
Length: 9 hours 4 minutes
Unleashed was such an incredibly disappointing follow up to Univited. The first book was easily one of my favorite books of 2014, but I almost DNFed this one. I had to leave it and come back and then I was only listening for the sake of knowing what would happen, not really interested in the story. As excited as I was for Unleashed to come out, I now find myself wishing that Univited had been a standalone.
What if the worst thing you ever did was unforgivable?
Davy's world fell apart after she tested positive for homicidal tendency syndrome. She was expelled from her school, dumped by her boyfriend, abandoned by friends, and shipped off to a camp that turns HTS carriers into soldiers. Davy may have escaped, but the damage has already been done. The unthinkable has happened. Now, even worse than having everyone else see her as a monster is the knowledge that they may have been right about her all along. Because Davy has killed.
On the run from government agents, Davy is rescued by Caden, the charismatic leader of an underground group of rebels. Despite Caden's assurances that the resistance is made up of carriers like her, Davy isn't sure she can trust them. Then again, she doesn't even know if she can trust herself...or her growing feelings for Caden. But if she doesn't belong with Caden and his followers, is there anywhere she can call home?
I felt like the two books had NOTHING in common. Univited was so unique and fresh, in my opinion at least. I was convinced by the concept and, while I believed that everything could go down the way they did, I was appalled by them. The idea that a person could be defined by a gene that marked them as capable of murder was as bad as racisim. More importantly, Sophie (the MC) was devestated by what happened to her and thought it was brutally wrong. Enter Unleashed – I don’t know who THIS Sophie is. She’s defeated and not just accepting that carriers are all murderers, but it’s like she WANTS to believe it. She’s done fighting and she’s become the angsty, disappointing teen of so many YA novels.
So the main character is an entirely different, less likeable, person. But at least I have the secondary characters I loved, right? NOPE! This is a bit spoilery, except that the synopsis kind of tells you it too – they make up maybe 4 chapters of the entire book! GRRR! Because of some perfectly legitimate problems that occur they are completely removed from the book and we have this whole new set of characters to decide how we feel about. And, on their own, I guess these characters are worth knowing. But I didn’t care about them because I waited A WHOLE YEAR to see what would happen to the other characters.
I do have to admit, there is a decent plot here buried in the disappointments. There’s a bit of a mystery and the new love interest is a decent guy. He’s even one I could like. The reason why those elements don’t fully redem the book for me is they’re so PREDICTABLE. It’s like we went from this fresh, unique concept and then whoosh, we’ve moved into every dystopia ever. Yeah, that’s an exaggeration, but I’m telling you, for a while I felt like I was reading book 2 of the Shatter Me Series. A good book? Yes. Did I want it to reappear in a new setting with new characters minus the super abilities? Not really.
I should mention that the audio was as good as before and Rebecca Gibel’s narration is solid. Perhaps the only reason I was able to finish reading Unleashed actually.
I’m very disappointed because I not only enjoyed Univited, but Sophie Jordan is a favorite author of mine. Hopefully her next book will be back to what I loved about Univited!