Unbreakable by Kami Garcia
|Unbreakable by Kami Garcia|
|Reviewer: Nigethan Sathiyalingam|
|Summary: With strong, engaging characters and fluid writing, fans of paranormal romance with lots of action will find plenty to enjoy here.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 305||Date: October 2013|
|Publisher: Simon and Schuster|
|External links: Author's website|
Set up centuries ago to fight the threat of a malevolent demon, the Legion is a secret society consisting of just five members at any one time, tasked with the responsibility of fighting and exorcising spirits. When all five members are murdered on the same night, their responsibility suddenly falls to five teenagers. Twins Jared and Lukas, Priest and Alara have been trained from a young age in the skills required to track, fight and destroy vengeance spirits. However, for Kennedy, who knows nothing of her mother's role in the Legion, everything is overwhelmingly new and highly dangerous. She will have to learn fast, as she cannot afford to be a liability as the team prepares to take on a mission with the utmost of stakes.
I'm a big fan of the Caster Chronicles, of which Kami Garcia is a co-author, so I jumped at the chance to read Unbreakable. And I'm glad I did so. While the writing style doesn't quite reach the peaks that Beautiful Creatures and its sequels made their own, it has many of the traits that made that series such a gorgeous and mouth-watering read. The narrative is deliciously fluid and the teen dialogue is sharp and highly believable. Relentlessly fast-paced, the story rarely pauses for a breath with plenty of exciting action scenes. The paranormal elements are also drawn out well, with the spirits that the team encounter being genuinely creepy, and the backstory of the secret society is intriguing; I would've loved for a more vivid exploration of the background, though I expect more will be revealed in sequels.
A major strength of the book lies in the five teenage protagonists. Kennedy is likeable and readers will easily empathise with her as she struggles, first to get to grips with this bewildering supernatural world, then to become a genuine member of the team, all the while still reeling from the death of her mother. While Kennedy provides the source of the first person narrative, the other four teens forming the team are also strong characters with unique, distinct personalities. I wasn't entirely convinced by the romantic angle of the story. It isn't one of those annoyingly soppy love triangles that have become all too commonplace in teen fiction – the characters are better than that – but the connection between the main pairing feels a little forced into place, a consequence, perhaps, of the relative shortness of the novel and the prominent focus on ghost-busting.
The plot is relatively straightforward with few real surprises, at least until the last 20-30 pages when the story suddenly flares to life with a dramatic twist, ending with a strong cliffhanger. All in all, there's plenty to enjoy here, enough to persuade me to put the next book in the series on my watchlist.
Thank you for sending a copy to The Bookbag.
The aforementioned Beautiful Creatures is well worth reading; I'm not a huge fan of romantic fantasy, but I was utterly enthralled by the series. For teens that like their ghosts, Haunted by William Hussey might be worth checking out.
You can read more book reviews or buy Unbreakable by Kami Garcia at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Unbreakable by Kami Garcia at Amazon.com.
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