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Sunday, April 21, 2013

Review: Unbreakable (Unraveling #2) by Elizabeth Norris

Publisher: HarperCollins
Published: April 23, 2013
Pages: 496
Source: For Review from HarperCollins Canada
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Four months after Ben disappeared through the portal to his home universe, Janelle believes she’ll never see him again. Her world is still devastated, but life is finally starting to resume some kind of normalcy. Until Interverse Agent Taylor Barclay shows up. Somebody from an alternate universe is running a human trafficking ring, kidnapping people and selling them on different Earths—and Ben is the prime suspect. Now his family has been imprisoned and will be executed if Ben doesn’t turn himself over within five days.
And when Janelle learns that someone she cares about—someone from her own world—has become one of the missing, she knows that she has to help Barclay, regardless of the danger. Now Janelle has five days to track down the real culprit. Five days to locate the missing people before they’re lost forever. Five days to reunite with the boy who stole her heart. But as the clues begin to add up, Janelle realizes that she’s in way over her head—and that she may not have known Ben as well as she thought. Can she uncover the truth before everyone she cares about is killed?

In short: Unbreakable by Elizabeth Norris is a strong and riveting sequel to an intensely thrilling duology.
Unraveling was a fantastically thrilling mystery with a super cool sci-fi twist, so I knew I needed to get my hands on Unbreakable, the sequel to this duology. There was some worry from me that Elizabeth Norris was not going to be able to bring the same level of intense action scenes and involved mystery that she brought in Unraveling, but in the end I needn't have worried at all: Unbreakable was just as exciting and electrifying as Unraveling. Elizabeth Norris has a true talent for crafting weighty and ambitious story lines and she handles them exceedingly well.

Part of what makes Unbreakable so riveting is its breakneck pacing. Like Unraveling, Unbreakable is a chunky book, but you would never know it: super short chapters, near constant action scenes, and a race against a countdown clock ensure that you will fly through this read. I mean, GOOD GRIEF it was kind of insane how non-stop the action was. Unbreakable is the kind of book that left me with my knees hurting from how much I had been tensing them. But what I think I loved even more is that the insane and numerous action scenes were never at the expense of character growth and emotion in Unbreakable, as they are with most action-packed books.

I continue to love Janelle for her independence, level-headedness, and quick thinking mind. But part of me actually feels crappy because I feel so lame in comparison. I mean, because Janelle really is pretty freaking awesome. Her endurance and perseverance in the face of all that she has had to endure, both in Unraveling and in Unbreakable, is pretty remarkable. And of course, I continue to love Ben and I continue to love Janelle and Ben together. SO MUCH FONDNESS! I was rooting for them for the entire series.

If you haven't given Unraveling a try yet, I would absolutely recommend it. As I mentioned, Elizabeth Norris is an ambitious story teller with some great ideas. It's no surprise to me that Unraveling has actually been optioned as a TV show by MTV as I think it would be well suited to such a medium and would be loved by fans of Fringe and The X-Files. I'm sad to see this series end, but maybe having a TV series will help me deal with the loss.

Previously, my review of Unraveling.

Other Reviews:
The Nocturnal Library
Once Upon a Twilight

Author Links:
HarperCollins Webpage


  1. Am I GLAD that you loved Unbreakable, Aylee! Yours is actually the first review I've seen for the book (wonder what happened to the rest?), and I'm preparing myself for the whirlwind of action that the book will bring already. I'm glad this lived up to your expectations, since Unraveling was so good.

    I didn't know the series was only two books, though! Aw. Heh, I'm not sure if a TV series would be the best, but I'm still proud for both Elizabeth and her books!

    Brilliant review, Aylee. :)

  2. I am SO freakin' excited for this book! So it's good to hear that you liked it. And can I just say how much I love the cover! I'm not usually a fan of books with models on them, but this one really works. Great review! ^^

  3. Glad the action and pacing didn't disappoint. I like the sound of Janelle being independent and quick thinking. I haven't read the first yet, but I have it and want to.

  4. I loved unraveling, so I'm glad to hear that Book 2 is just as good. I could totally see this becoming a TV show!

  5. I just bought Unraveling, so I'm really excited to see that you think Unbreakable is a great sequel! I need to start reading soon :)

    Fantastic review!

  6. Oh YAY to Unraveling being optioned as a TV show. I absolutely loved the first book and it would definitely be a great medium for that. I really need to get my hands on Unbreakable now, after everything in the first book, I'm excited for more Ben and Janelle. They are both such amazing characters, and I love how fast the story goes. Great review. I'm even more excited to read this now!

  7. "But what I think I loved even more is that the insane and numerous action scenes were never at the expense of character growth and emotion in Unbreakable, as they are with most action-packed books."

    I could not agree more Aylee! That's exactly how I felt about this book:) I was worried I'd have an issue with Ben and Janelle being separated for so long as well, and that wasn't the case either. I loved that we got to spend so much time with Janelle on her own, it just added to the tension surrounding their inevitable reunion. SO glad you loved Unbreakable too!

  8. Oh, yes, she just refused to let us breathe with this one! The pacing was great, and the story turned out to be so much bigger than I expected. And I have to agree about Janelle being amazing, and as much as I hated seeing them apart, she kind of needed to fly solo for a while there, and I loved it.
    She and Ben are the sweetest, loveliest couple. I was so sad to say goodbye to them.

  9. I need to check out Unraveling soon, I don't think I've ever seen a less that glowing review of this series! Glad to hear you loved it too---that's exciting to know it got picked up for TV!

  10. I loved the fast pace and must-keep-reading feel of the first book and I'm so glad to hear this one is just as thrilling. Janelle is one of my favourite characters, so I can't wait to see what she's like in this. And yay for Ben! I'm really nervous about what will happen between them, though I can't wait to find out. Awesome review as always, Aylee!

  11. Well, I'm a big fan of the Xfiles, even all these years after so you got me interested in trying this book since you say that as a tv show it would appeal to the same viewers. :D

    Thanks for the review, the book does sound good.

  12. Epic review! I still need to read Unraveling but I'm a hell of a lot more motivated for reading your review of Unbreakable!! The pacing sounds like Hunger Games intense and Janelle sounds like just the kind of MC I would admire/obsess over! Elizabeth Norris...I wonder if she's any relation of Chuck Norris might explain the kick-assness?? who knows, not like I've actually seen a Chuck Norris movie before LOL Anyways thanks for the review, I'll have to move book 1 up the old reading list ;)

  13. I'm about halfway through Unraveling and I'm really liking it so far. I love Janelle; she's someone I can completely identify with and she's not tremendously cool or completely dorky (I find that MC's tend to be on either extremes). I'm looking forward to seeing what happens in Unbreakable once I get around to reading it.

  14. So happy to hear that you loved the sequel! I'm about to start it, and I'm even more excited after reading your review. I was so happy to hear about the TV show; can't wait until it happens! Lovely review :-)

  15. I haven't read Unraveling yet! *hides* I'm so looking forward to it though, I swear I'll get to it sometime. It looks like you really loved and enjoyed this book, Aylee and I'm glad to see that. Awesome review! Janelle sounds really good.

    Hey and thank you so much for adding The Readdicts blog button. ♥ We've had yours too. :D I missed blogging for a week so don't be shocked when you blog is overflowed with my comments. I've a lot of stalking to do. :P

  16. Amped to see the second book almost rivals the first. Because of you I snatched book #1 Unraveling up on Amazon when it was on sale. I'm excited to start, just need to make some time (story of my life heeeheeee)