Hardcover ↠ The Unwanteds MOBI Þ

Hardcover ↠ The Unwanteds MOBI Þ



10 thoughts on “The Unwanteds

  1. Sheri Radford Sheri Radford says:

    Has anyone else seen that recent episode of The Simpsons in which Lisa wants to be a writer and Bart and Homer come up with a scheme to group write a YA novel by throwing in every element that all YA novels seem to have these days? That's what The Unwanteds felt like to me It had a dystopian future some magic a kindly all knowing mentor Dumbledore esue not just one but two sets of twins each complete with one good twin and one evil twin a war between good and evil even a hint of a love story but the whole was definitely less than the sum of the parts This book was a struggle to get through I didn't find myself invested in the story or caring about any of the characters The book had a fascinating premise but it was so poorly executed that I can't recommend it


  2. Jane Jane says:

    So my 8 year old nephew LOVED this book He loved it so much that he graciously loaned me his copy of both this and the next in series yay? He moved to this series after blowing through all of the Harry Potter books and several Rick Riordan series So this book is definitely a good match for any kids who are into the action and magic of those sorts of books My thoughts though? Maybe not so generousI struggled a LOT to get into this book In fact it has taken me nearly 10 months to finish this one and it was only in the last uarter of the book or so that things got interesting enough that I actually looked forward to picking this up I do have to say that the world building here is pretty cool a lot of the magic is really awesome and when things finally got going the action near the end is phenomenalI think part of my problem with this book is that I couldn't figure out which reading level this targets Although the main cast of characters are said to be around 13 most of the time they act like kids who are 9 or 10 doing the stupid and naive things that kids of that age tend to do But every now and then there's a hint of awkward first love stuff I don't really understand why there needed to be any romance even just hints of it in this book The characters and writing style all seem much suited to a slightly younger reader but the book length some darker material and the addition of romance ugh seem to target an upper middle grade or pre YA reader I dunno I think I would have liked this a lot better if it weren't so long and I think some of the length could have been trimmed just by getting rid of puppy love scenes and some of the repetitive sulking scenesBy the end I liked the book enough that I am not dreading reading the second book Had this not been recommended by my nephew I likely would have DNF'd this and I don't regret having stuck with it But overall I didn't like this enough to give it than 3 stars


  3. Laurel Laurel says:

    “The Hunger Games meets Harry Potter”Someone tell me how and I’ll reconsider my being against thatI love fantasy I love someone telling me in a book that there is a giant tiger wolf bird guarding a castle and there are no uestions asked I love it because as illogical and unlikely it would seem no one gives a crap because how cool would it be? You’re too busy dreaming about this massive creature interpreting what animal is visible in the combination to think “What the? Those don’t exist” GOLD STAR FOR YOU they don’t exist For children’s books in particular imagination is at its freest You can say anything and children will take it in and say “Cool” And that is why I still call myself a child at heart If I wanted something realistic I’d go outside Books are an escape they’re meant for people with imaginationsI long for originality Originality brings me the ultimate happiness in a series That’s why I love The Thief of Always why I love Eyes Like Stars why I love this book There are so many components that stand out and say “Excuse me I have some things to say and most of them are awesome magical and just plain breathtaking” So I sit myself down and take a biteThe Unwanteds starts with a dark path of life Anyone who is dull and intelligent lives on in the society of uill; anyone creative and interesting goes to their death in the Great Lake of Boiling Oil Yeah Ohhh dark like The Hunger Games Every futuristic society is like this Don’t just pin it on whatever dystopian is most popular so it can get some pick up I hate that than I hate bad literature Wanna know what drew me to this book? It wasn’t that damn gimmickIt was that brilliantly done cover The stunning riveting cover with the complimentary color scheme realistic depth of perception and compositional eye candy Owen Richardson Karin Paprocki you are truly gifted people Never stop what you’re doing I wanna hire you for my covers I dunno how that can happen but I will make it happenOf course the cover is just a little bit of the battle Because I hate the “IT’S LIKE THE OTHER POPULAR STUFF” gimmick I walked into this story with mild expectations My only diehard expectation was getting to see the lion statue do awesome stuff which is actually a cheetah which irks me because the cover statue’s face anatomy is off I’m nitpicking sorry Don’t expect Hunger Games because that never shows up here Nothing close and that is in the best of ways Don’t expect Harry Potter either because the only thing that it has in common with The Unwanteds is that there is magicShall we begin the breakdown?Writing style I have never read McMann’s other works but I enjoyed her style here It’s simple for her intended audience and whenever she does use poetic prose or larger words she gets them right into the context clues and any younger child would get into this no problem No dictionaries needed Like Heather Brewer there is nothing truly amazing in this writing She tells you how it is and that’s the way it was I did expect some great writing with of the magical aspects of Artimé but instead I got on how gloomy and boring uill was At least it made me love Artimé and hate everything about uillMcMann needs a little work in pacing I never mentioned it much in my status updates but the plot did start rather slowly I mean we got to Artimé right away but after that it took a while to get the ball rolling I do forgive McMann though because she took the time she had to build up Artimé and its magical tendencies I applaud her because I got a hit of her originality in some aspects all purpose blackboards and in others not so much throwing two random animal species togetherHer POV was a bit confusing at times She started with a few chapters of alternating between Aaron and Alex but then within those chapters she’d switch to Lani or Meghan Interesting characters but I can’t worry about who we’re following and would rather follow exactly where the plot is going And that was with AlexAaronNow that I mention it these characters were fairly simple cutouts Alex and Aaron were twins Alex was creative and Aaron was not Alex was scared for his brother and missed him like any person would Aaron was a toolbox and forgot Alex near immediately But as near cookie cutter as these two are they are still interesting because they interact with better well rounded hilarious and awesome characters In Harry Potter I never gave two shits for Harry but I loved everyone else That’s how I feel hereMr Today is a wonderful old man I’d mix him between Willy Wonka and a legit magician because he is He is so nice and loving and whenever he does something that makes you say “Hey waitaminute” he’s able to back it up with good intentions He is brilliant and just a sweetheartSimber my LOVE is a giant winged cheetah statue That lives If you find that uninteresting and boring you are pretty boring yourself I’m sorry Simber is a player in this story and he comes of as very protective and commanding in a necessary way He’s brilliant I’m gonna get me a Simber someday Someone tell me where to find winged cheetah statues in Harry Potter That’s rightLani Haluki is the hinted love interest and she was just precious She was a bookworm but McMann wrote her very well because she wasn’t bashing my head in with that stereotype Lani is a delight Here is an example of simple romance Nothing huge no LOVE here True it’s simply a children’s book but YA can take notes from this Perfect example of a slow burning build High five McMannALL of these characters are a delight The only fart I have with them all is that the minor characters are dropped by the way side this being Jim the GIANT WINGED TORTOISE you heard me right suckahs and Meg’s brother SeanPlot wise as I stated earlier jumped then slowed for good reason then steadily built up with good pacing I don’t want to say too much or I’ll spoil but this was where McMann actually got her POV passages right on and I was able to follow the entire climax a okay Slowly but surely we watched Aaron get and twisted we watched Alex get and worried and we saw everyone training for preparedness because nothing as perfect as Artimé lasted foreverNow I will be very clear I thoroughly enjoyed myself with this book but I am not in love with it I was not crying when something crazy ridiculous happened but I was cheering for the characters I cared about them and they cared about me There were so many clever and original aspects of Unwanteds that it would be a sin to give the book less than 4 starsHowever there is enough stuff to set it right at 4 stars This is not a perfect book but I guarantee that something somewhere in this book will click your interest whether it be giant cheetah statues ridiculing blackboards or painting doorways in order to get to new placesWhoever first thought it was like Harry Potter and Hunger Games is a dunce because if they do related somehow it’s the littlest smidge I’m surprised my prediction was right this book had its own song Not a bright life changing heart stopping song but one worth hearing out and trying for yourselfI most certainly recommend this book because it brings back my imagination It has reawakened my need to write It can collect dust on your shelf for all I care but that cover is one I can appreciate with the utmost respectFor all you writers out thereIf you want me to be impressed you better be original or I won’t even try to enjoy your story


  4. Bern Bern says:

    I bought The Unwanteds last year after having loved Lisa McMann's other books Cryer's Cross and Dead To You The cover was beautiful the synopsis was interesting and there were even critics raving on how the book was like Harry Potter meets The Hunger Games I figured that with all those credentials The Unwanteds ought to be a pretty awesome read but it seems I was horribly dreadfully wrongNarrationThe omniscient and omnipresent third person narration is awful That kind of narration has to be done properly if it's not to fall in one or of the various writing potholes that come with it and Lisa McMann didn't achieve that Instead she forsakes dialogue and uses the narrator to tell you how all of the characters feel what they're thinking and what their plans for the future are This generates a complete lack of suspense and also makes the characters uninteresting since you get to know them through information that is blatantly hurled at you by the narratorCharactersThe characters in The Unwanteds are a complete mess They're rough carbon copies of characters in other series except the ones in this book are dense uninteresting or both They're all extremely childish and dumb and before someone argues that it's a children's book go read a Series of Unfortunate Events or Harry Potter or The Golden Compass Those are children's books and people in them aren't idioticOn Writing For ChildrenThe Unwanteds is painfully the kind of middle grade book that treats the reader as if he or she were daft There are no plot twists that can't be seen kilometres away and that aren't manhandled into the story so they can hit you right in the face If character's intentions aren't clear enough they either explain themselves verbally or have the narrator give their reasons or both Predicate nominatives are barely used which results in the kind of sentence that goes like Alex tried his best to climb the mountain but the mountain was too steep Normally that should be phrased Alex tried his best to climb the mountain but it was too steep but Lisa McMann wants you to be sure of what she means lest you get confused and somehow arrive on the conclusion that she's describing Alex as steep whatever that meansI actually ended up skimming the latter half of the book I don't know how other people skim but I just read dialogue and enough description to understand what's going on barely and I loathe skimming because it's a drastic last resort but it was either that or DNF this book and that beautiful cover deserved betterMain point is The Unwanteds is a terrible book that wastes some actually good ideas and then always acts on the assumption that its reader is dumb as a box of rocks It's neither charming and magical like Harry Potter nor interesting as The Hunger Games and I wouldn't recommend it for childrenteenagers or adults


  5. Lora Lora says:

    Without knowledge that life can be different there can be no desire to change it In the land of uill all thirteen year olds are sent to the annual Purge where they will be divided into Wanted and Unwanted For twin brothers Alex and Aaron this day is especially daunting as they are both now thirteen and reluctant to separate Or at least Alex is and would like to believe his brother reciprocates this sentimentOn the day of the Purge Alex is unsurprisingly categorized as Unwanted and his brother Aaron is chosen as a Wanted Feeling scared and helpless Alex goes off to meet his death along with his fellow Unwanteds But when he arrives at the Death Farmer's doorstep he is surprised to find a land where magic and creativity thrive Animated origami dragons; giant talking tortoises; and a montrous winged cheetah named Simber are just a few of the many astonishing creatures that can be found in ArtimeStill when the Unwanteds arrive in Artime they expect to be executed momentarily But instead all of the children are uickly assured by Mr Today that this shall not be their fateKnown to the people of uill as the Death Farmer Mr Today has spent many years perfecting Artime and making it a safe haven for the Unwanteds As you can imagine this revelation is as surprising as it is a saving grace for the kidsBut if any members of the uilitary found out of their rebellion it would mean a sure death for all involved This of course means that neither Alex nor any of the other Unwanteds are allowed to contact anyone — friends relatives authorities — in uillAlthough sad at the prospect of never seeing his brother again with his friends supporting him Alex moves into Artime and begins a whole new life Kirkus Reviews hails The Unwanteds as the Hunger Games meets Harry Potter After having read it myself I must agree This is not to say that I believe McMann is attempting to subtly copy the two bestselling series as a means to gain attention for her fledgling series No I believe that she has — whether knowingly or not I won't speculate — taken some of the very best aspects of each series and used them as the underpinning for a new middle grade dystopian fantasy series that will surely gain many fans The Unwanteds turned out to be a rather pleasant surprise for me Despite my having enjoyed some of McMann's earlier works I somehow felt that her voyage into the dystopian genre wouldn't turn out to my liking thus making my expectations low going in Luckily for me I was wrongAlbeit lacking a little in the personality department the characters are fresh and full of potential I can see them growing and coming into themselves as the series progressesFor being so young Lani — Alex's new friendpotential love interest — hasn't had an easy life Having her father uill's mayor pull strings to get her into the Purge at the premature age of twelve in order to be rid of her view spoileror so she believes hide spoiler


  6. Rachel Reads Ravenously Rachel Reads Ravenously says:

    Picked this up for my tween grad school project because I am asked for this series all the time at my job at the library But this turned out like The Lightning Thief for me and mehThis is just one of those books that ain't for me I gave it until 200 pages in and I'm DNFing with no rating because I just don't careFull review belowIn the land of uill there is a ceremony when its children turn thirteen; they are placed as Wanted Necessary and Unwanted The Wanteds go on to higher level important positions The Necessaries become the laborers And the Unwanteds are sent to be terminated Alex and Aaron are twins and on the day they are sorted Aaron is chosen as a Wanted and Alex an Unwanted Alex leaves his twin behind and accepts his fate that is until he and the other Unwanteds discover that they are not to be terminated but to live and thrive in a magical new land with all of the other Unwanteds Here they are expected to be creative pursue their art and learn battle training But as time goes by the Unwanteds discover their safe haven is under threat and they have to fight to save itThis book started off extremely morbid and did not strike me as tween at first Thirteen year olds being sent off to die because they built a stick house or sang a tune? It felt pretty extreme Once the plot developed into Artime the magical land it made sense in a way There had to be a force brought in for all of the creative children to improve uill itself reminded me of a mix of Pleasantville combined with the world in The Giver with a dictator like President Snow from the Hunger Games series I can see how tweens would love this book because the attributes that make them uniue are celebrated in this book in the world of Artime where they can sing and dance and act all day long with the added element of magic being involved The land of uill to me somewhat represented the oppression of the strict classroom where one is punished for being created Artime is a dream world that every tween would daydream about if it really existed The twin bond was an interesting addition making the story a bit uniue than the typical fantasy jaunt Even though Alex and Aaron are obviously very different from each other they still love each other and feel that special bond that twins seem to have and it made for a good conflict in the plot Lisa McMann is a great writer and she seems to have a knack for sucking tweens into her books


  7. Julia Julia says:

    On the cover of this book it says the Hunger Games meets Harry Potter OK the plot is a bit like that In fact the base plot in this book has potential Unfortunatelythe author never ever meets that potentialThe writing is bland the characters are flat There is no emotional engagement with the characters as such there is no suspense because ultimately who cares what happens to any of them Not to mention that there is a complete and utter lack of world building Sorry but my verdict somewhere between underwhelming not worth the paper it was printed on


  8. TheBookSmugglers TheBookSmugglers says:

    Originally reviewed on The Book Smugglers REVIEW First Impressions Thea When I first laid eyes on The Unwanteds and read the novel's intriguing summary I was hooked and knew it was one of my MUST GET OR DIE titles at BEA this year As a long time lover of both dystopias and fantasy the blend of these two seemingly incongruous components always wins me over I'm a little chagrined to say however that while The Unwanteds is an undeniably fun book featuring some wonderful characters and an imaginative magical system I had huge problems with the central premise of the story and plot aspects I liked the book well enough and am certain that both children and older readers will enjoy it too but I cannot shake my irritation even horror at the central dichotomy for the book Maybe I'm taking things too seriously But on that belowAna I don't think that Thea is taking things too seriously and I totally understand where she is coming from Although I think I liked the book a bit than she did I do think that there are considerable problems with the very premise of the novel However I made a conscious decision half way through to just accept it because I liked the characters and the writing and was able to enjoy the ride because of that You can call it self preservation and usually I would drive myself crazy over this On the Plot uill prevails when the strong survive so the motto of the isolated nation state that is uill reverberates in each of its citizens From birth children are indoctrinated to this lifestyle wherein anything artistic and creative is seen as anathema and only those that follow instructions and excel at the practical hard sciences and related subjects math economics etc are allowed to survive and succeed In the year of their thirteenth birthdays all the children of uill participate in The Purge and are sorted into three groups Wanteds who will go on to study at uill's university and become vital members of government and social planning Necessaries those who will do the menial labor for the good of the nation and Unwanteds The Unwanteds are immediately loaded on a transport and sent to the Great Lake of Boiling Oil to be killed so they will no longer a blight on uill's perfect society of intelligence and strength Alex has long known that he will be deemed an Unwanted but he is still shocked and terrified when he hears his name called on the list for execution during the year of his Purge Meanwhile his twin brother Aaron has surpassed their Necessary parents and has become a full fledged Wanted Alex steels himself for his fate and with the rest of the Unwanteds leaves uill forever and faces imminent deathExcept Alex doesn't die When they reach the Great Lake of Boiling Oil the devastated and terrifying landscape melts away to reveal a luscious paradise where emotions and artistic abilities are honored and magic is commonplace Alex and his new friends discover that Unwanteds have not been killed as eveyrone in uill believes but have taken refuge in Artimé under the protective wing of Mr Marcus Today As it turns out Today is an immensely powerful mage that has been duping High Priest Justine the iron willed leader of uill for years As Alex grows in his skills as an artist in Artimé becoming a powerful mage in his own right he cannot shake the feeling of longing he has for his beloved twin brother Aaron and he vows to find a way to save him and bring him to the magical realm beyond the coldness of uill But to do so puts all the Unwanteds and Artimé itself at terrible risk because if Aaron refuses to come with his twin uill and its mighty uillitary will come to destroy the safe haven that Mr Today has builtThea Let's start out with the good I loved the brutality of uill how instead of simply imprisoning or segregating Unwanteds they chose to have their children murdered it's terribly bleak but also incredibly believable in this type of black and white society On the other side of the spectrum I loved the idea of magic derived from art there are very uniue and wonderful spells that these children learn and create together from origami paper dragons that attack paintbrushes with invisibility spells magic three dimensional doors and rhyming couplets that can kill I also loved the menagerie that is Artimé rife with marvelous creatures like flying stone panthers art teachers with alligator heads and octopus appendages as well as artifacts like talking slatesblackboards and tubes that can transport people instantly from one room to another The writing and the story itself are executed well enough and the pages will fly by even if there is an annoying degree of repetition to certain plot elements let's put it this way every scene in uill had at least one chant of uill prevails when the strong survive Now that I think about it this would be a great drinking gamewell you know for adults BUTI have two huge un overlookable problems with The Unwanteds that seriously put a damper on my enjoyment of the story The biggest problem is the central premise of the novel and Ms McMann's portrayal of creativity In this world creativity ONLY comes from the arts ONLY those who are artistic in terms of painting acting musical instruments or dancing are considered creative and only they are singled out as Unwanteds and only they are the ones that can wield magic Let me use a few uotes to illustrateYou already know that your parents and the government of uill believe you to be eliminated by now You know they are not mourning for you They're doing what they do every day which is to work to build uill into a place of extreme power and super intelligence You dear children are what they call creative Imaginative The government and especially High Priest Justine wants to eliminate creative thinkers like you they see creativity as a weakness After all it could lead to something horriblelike magicand then there's this uoteAaron was being rewarded First for his excellent work in solving the beef problem for the high priest second for his insight into the matter of the Favored Farm at large and third for his program which outlined precisely how to run the farm most efficiently It had been his last assignment in math class and since all of the university students' work was checked by the governors it did not take long for Governor Strang to notice Aaron's penchant for economics And economics was something that the High Priest Justine was very fond of Especially because it always benefited herThis drives me absolutely insane Some of humanity's most brilliant and creative minds have been mathematicians scientists engineers and yes even economists as an economics graduate I resent these implications so very much The central premise of the novel precludes the possibility nay the reality that it takes creativity to be in the sciences or related subjects You're trying to tell me that Einstein's theorems are the product of a non creative mind? That brilliant economists like John Nash or Adam Smith or that Watson Crick and Franklin in their discovery of the double helix structure of DNA have not an iota of creativity in their being? What of Euler Da Vinci Tesla Curie Newton Darwin or Galileo? I'm sorry but I call BULLPUCKY The dichotomous environment that Ms McMann paints in her vision of Artimé versus uill shows Artimé as a land of plenty; a veritable paradise where technology is unneeded because yo they got MAGIC people are loved can express emotion and play around all day doing magical artsy things On the other side of the spectrum uill is a dilapidated rusty wasteland with brainwashed zombie like inhabitants crumbling infrastructure and a shortage of both food and water Those Unwanteds who are taken to Artimé are passionate intelligent young people capable of experiencing the whole spectrum of human emotionand those people in uill are the cruel small minded people that are good at math and keep their heads down and follow rulesIs this really the type of comparison that we want to see especially in a time when math and the hard and applied social sciences including the dreaded selfish economics are seeing a decline in enrollment and interest from students at all ages? So many children already think of these subjects as icky terrible burdens and books like The Unwanteds sure ain't helping much By the way can you imagine the magic that someone could do with math? PHYSICS? CHEMISTRY? How badass would those magical tools and spells be? Alas in Ms McMann's skewed world of The Unwanteds we shall never knowThe other main problem I had with the story was in the bizarre lack of power structure for magic it becomes clear at the end of the novel that Mr Today could vanuish the entire uill army with a single phrase Really? If that's the case then why have a war at all? Why wouldn't he have stopped Justine years and years ago and liberated the people of uill rather than let it fall into ruin and then live in supposed fear? It doesn't make any sort of logical sense Beyond that I didn't really buy that uill was so dilapidated after some fifty less? years and that people were so shut down and unemotional What exactly happened to this society? Was there a devastating war or something of that nature? There's never really any explanation given so as things stand uill seems to be such a terrible place just because it has to be in order for this to be a real dystopia And I'm not buying itAna It is the strangest thing I completely 100% agree with what Thea is saying and usually something like that would drive me completely insane If I had to compare this book with another recent Dystopian novel I would compare it with Delirium by Lauren Oliver I was not able to finish that book because I found it really hard to accept the premise that the society in that book chose to eradicate LOVE because it was such a negative emotion Not only because the premise itself is ridiculous why love and not hate for example? Surely hate is a negative emotion but also because it is hard to understand how love can be defined as one single straight forward emotion when there are so many things that come attached to it lust compassion friendship jealousy etc etc I think it is the same principle with creativity how can you single out what makes one person creative or not? As Thea so aptly says creativity does not solely exists when connected to arts Having said that I was able to accept the premise here much easily that I was able to accept when reading Delirium and I will put it down to Lisa McMann's writing it is not perfect far from it but it is engaging as hell because I think she gets writing characters just right And even though I had this niggling feeling at the back of my mind telling me that things did not make a lot of sense the ending and how easy it was to win the war was particularly well senseless I have to say that I was able to let go and enjoy On the Characters Thea While the central premise of the society and the plausibility of the plot are highly suspect I did in fact enjoy the characters this is what saved the book from meeting the wall for me The protagonist of the story is young Alex who earnestly loves his twin brother and is willing to risk everything to be reunited with Aaron once again The bond between twins is a uniue thing and the relationship between the Wanted and Unwanted brothers is a complicated bond steeped in both love and hate I appreciated that Alex is not a flawless character and makes freuent missteps especially in the treatment of his friends it's all part of the growing process right? Beyond Alex my favorite characters had to be Lani and Sam Lani is brilliant as the feisty smaller girl who tries to get Alex's attention and bring him back to reality when he's being a jerk Sam is curmudgeonly but for good cause and the friendship that develops between him and Alex is a tentative but wonderful thing Both of these characters also go through the ringer in the book's final climactic act with both confronting their parents and playing dramatic roles in the future of Artimé and uill It's awesome stuffAna This is what completely made the book for me I just LOVED the characters and how very flawed they were Alex was the main hero and he made loads of mistakes and some of them had real terrible repercussions He shared the spotlight with many other kids and out of all of them I loved Lani the most because she was totally and completely merciless when necessary I also really enjoyed how the author explored the connection between twins and whether it truly exist or not And I appreciated how the author actually never shied away from having her characters making terrible horrible decisions and acting on them In that sense even though the ending seemed a bit too easy overall each character went through the ringer before the final pages Granted those could have been better developed especially with regards to the aftermath of those decisions and how the character dealt with what they did Final Thoughts Observations Rating Thea I'm torn I loved the characters and the story zipped by uickly enough but I despise the disingenuous central premise of the novel I'm certain that many people will love this book and not have a problem with the dichotomous nature of creativity as defined in The Unwanteds but I am not one of them Ana As with any Dystopian novel I believe that a reader's level of enjoyment when reading The Unwanteds will be directly connected to how much they are willing to buy into the premise of the novel I liked the book well enough but did uestion my way through it Rating Thea 5 Good but I can't bring myself to truly recommend itAna 6 Good Recommended with Reservations


  9. hayden hayden says:

    May I just say how clever the premise for this book is? Everyone with a single ounce of creativity is Unwanted and executed and everyone who's athletic or intelligent stay and are deemed Wanted? That is single handedly the most clever premise I've read in a long time That's true fantasy a whole world spawned from just a single uestion McMann doesn't fall flat of what I expected from this wonderful idea In fact I didn't even know what this was going to be about until I read the Introduction I was engrossedAnd also may I say how big and how unexpected of a switch up this is from McMann's normal stuff paranormal romance I know? I feel like this is a completely different author here because her paranormal books are written in such short edgy gripping sentences and this book is written in vivid languid fluid prose that just jumps off the page and into your head I can't say which I like better because in her paranormal stuff you're just constantly flipping pages and you're haunted by the story but in this middle grade fantasy novel you're just completely entranced by the beautiful language and you can't stop readingNo matter what I officially present McMann the Most Versatile Author Award I just made that On a complete whim Seriously though How can you not agree with me? Freakin' polar opposites here and she can do 'em both That takes some serious writing mojoThis has to be the most creative book I've ever read McMann doesn't fall short of my expectations which I appreciate to the fullest extent The ending of this book is totally open ended so you really have no idea of knowing whether or not this will be a series Honestly I'd just prefer this to be a stand alone but I'm open to another book or three of THE UNWANTEDSGripping and languid THE UNWANTEDS is McMann's most creative book yet with a premise to die for; I was uickly engrossed into Alex's world of misery and new hope and when I reached the end I was deeply saddened saddened that is by the fact that I'm left hanging with no seuel within reach I strongly recommend you pick this up


  10. Julia Julia says:

    I cannot explain how good this book was


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The Unwanteds ➺ [Reading] ➼ The Unwanteds By Lisa McMann ➯ – Capitalsoftworks.co.uk When Alex finds out he is Unwanted he expects to die That is the way of the people of uill Each year all the thirteen year olds are labeled as Wanted Necessary or Unwanted Wanteds get schooling and tr When Alex finds out he is Unwanted he expects to die That is the way of the people of uill Each year all the thirteen year olds are labeled as Wanted Necessary or Unwanted Wanteds get schooling and train to join the uillitary Necessaries keep the farms running Unwanteds are set for elimination It’s hard for Alex to leave behind his twin Aaron a Wanted but he makes peace with his fate—until he discovers that instead of a “death farm” what awaits him is a magical place called Artimé There Alex and his fellow Unwanteds are encouraged to cultivate their creative abilities and use them magically Everything Alex has ever known changes before his eyes and it’s a wondrous transformation But it’s a rare uniue occurrence for twins to be divided between Wanted and Unwanted and as Alex and Aaron's bond stretches across their separation a threat arises for the survival of Artim that will pit brother against brother in an ultimate magical battle.

10 thoughts on “The Unwanteds

  1. Sheri Radford Sheri Radford says:

    Has anyone else seen that recent episode of The Simpsons in which Lisa wants to be a writer and Bart and Homer come up with a scheme to group write a YA novel by throwing in every element that all YA novels seem to have these days? That's what The Unwanteds felt like to me It had a dystopian future some magic a kindly all knowing mentor Dumbledore esue not just one but two sets of twins each complete with one good twin and one evil twin a war between good and evil even a hint of a love story but the whole was definitely less than the sum of the parts This book was a struggle to get through I didn't find myself invested in the story or caring about any of the characters The book had a fascinating premise but it was so poorly executed that I can't recommend it

  2. Jane Jane says:

    So my 8 year old nephew LOVED this book He loved it so much that he graciously loaned me his copy of both this and the next in series yay? He moved to this series after blowing through all of the Harry Potter books and several Rick Riordan series So this book is definitely a good match for any kids who are into the action and magic of those sorts of books My thoughts though? Maybe not so generousI struggled a LOT to get into this book In fact it has taken me nearly 10 months to finish this one and it was only in the last uarter of the book or so that things got interesting enough that I actually looked forward to picking this up I do have to say that the world building here is pretty cool a lot of the magic is really awesome and when things finally got going the action near the end is phenomenalI think part of my problem with this book is that I couldn't figure out which reading level this targets Although the main cast of characters are said to be around 13 most of the time they act like kids who are 9 or 10 doing the stupid and naive things that kids of that age tend to do But every now and then there's a hint of awkward first love stuff I don't really understand why there needed to be any romance even just hints of it in this book The characters and writing style all seem much suited to a slightly younger reader but the book length some darker material and the addition of romance ugh seem to target an upper middle grade or pre YA reader I dunno I think I would have liked this a lot better if it weren't so long and I think some of the length could have been trimmed just by getting rid of puppy love scenes and some of the repetitive sulking scenesBy the end I liked the book enough that I am not dreading reading the second book Had this not been recommended by my nephew I likely would have DNF'd this and I don't regret having stuck with it But overall I didn't like this enough to give it than 3 stars

  3. Laurel Laurel says:

    “The Hunger Games meets Harry Potter”Someone tell me how and I’ll reconsider my being against thatI love fantasy I love someone telling me in a book that there is a giant tiger wolf bird guarding a castle and there are no uestions asked I love it because as illogical and unlikely it would seem no one gives a crap because how cool would it be? You’re too busy dreaming about this massive creature interpreting what animal is visible in the combination to think “What the? Those don’t exist” GOLD STAR FOR YOU they don’t exist For children’s books in particular imagination is at its freest You can say anything and children will take it in and say “Cool” And that is why I still call myself a child at heart If I wanted something realistic I’d go outside Books are an escape they’re meant for people with imaginationsI long for originality Originality brings me the ultimate happiness in a series That’s why I love The Thief of Always why I love Eyes Like Stars why I love this book There are so many components that stand out and say “Excuse me I have some things to say and most of them are awesome magical and just plain breathtaking” So I sit myself down and take a biteThe Unwanteds starts with a dark path of life Anyone who is dull and intelligent lives on in the society of uill; anyone creative and interesting goes to their death in the Great Lake of Boiling Oil Yeah Ohhh dark like The Hunger Games Every futuristic society is like this Don’t just pin it on whatever dystopian is most popular so it can get some pick up I hate that than I hate bad literature Wanna know what drew me to this book? It wasn’t that damn gimmickIt was that brilliantly done cover The stunning riveting cover with the complimentary color scheme realistic depth of perception and compositional eye candy Owen Richardson Karin Paprocki you are truly gifted people Never stop what you’re doing I wanna hire you for my covers I dunno how that can happen but I will make it happenOf course the cover is just a little bit of the battle Because I hate the “IT’S LIKE THE OTHER POPULAR STUFF” gimmick I walked into this story with mild expectations My only diehard expectation was getting to see the lion statue do awesome stuff which is actually a cheetah which irks me because the cover statue’s face anatomy is off I’m nitpicking sorry Don’t expect Hunger Games because that never shows up here Nothing close and that is in the best of ways Don’t expect Harry Potter either because the only thing that it has in common with The Unwanteds is that there is magicShall we begin the breakdown?Writing style I have never read McMann’s other works but I enjoyed her style here It’s simple for her intended audience and whenever she does use poetic prose or larger words she gets them right into the context clues and any younger child would get into this no problem No dictionaries needed Like Heather Brewer there is nothing truly amazing in this writing She tells you how it is and that’s the way it was I did expect some great writing with of the magical aspects of Artimé but instead I got on how gloomy and boring uill was At least it made me love Artimé and hate everything about uillMcMann needs a little work in pacing I never mentioned it much in my status updates but the plot did start rather slowly I mean we got to Artimé right away but after that it took a while to get the ball rolling I do forgive McMann though because she took the time she had to build up Artimé and its magical tendencies I applaud her because I got a hit of her originality in some aspects all purpose blackboards and in others not so much throwing two random animal species togetherHer POV was a bit confusing at times She started with a few chapters of alternating between Aaron and Alex but then within those chapters she’d switch to Lani or Meghan Interesting characters but I can’t worry about who we’re following and would rather follow exactly where the plot is going And that was with AlexAaronNow that I mention it these characters were fairly simple cutouts Alex and Aaron were twins Alex was creative and Aaron was not Alex was scared for his brother and missed him like any person would Aaron was a toolbox and forgot Alex near immediately But as near cookie cutter as these two are they are still interesting because they interact with better well rounded hilarious and awesome characters In Harry Potter I never gave two shits for Harry but I loved everyone else That’s how I feel hereMr Today is a wonderful old man I’d mix him between Willy Wonka and a legit magician because he is He is so nice and loving and whenever he does something that makes you say “Hey waitaminute” he’s able to back it up with good intentions He is brilliant and just a sweetheartSimber my LOVE is a giant winged cheetah statue That lives If you find that uninteresting and boring you are pretty boring yourself I’m sorry Simber is a player in this story and he comes of as very protective and commanding in a necessary way He’s brilliant I’m gonna get me a Simber someday Someone tell me where to find winged cheetah statues in Harry Potter That’s rightLani Haluki is the hinted love interest and she was just precious She was a bookworm but McMann wrote her very well because she wasn’t bashing my head in with that stereotype Lani is a delight Here is an example of simple romance Nothing huge no LOVE here True it’s simply a children’s book but YA can take notes from this Perfect example of a slow burning build High five McMannALL of these characters are a delight The only fart I have with them all is that the minor characters are dropped by the way side this being Jim the GIANT WINGED TORTOISE you heard me right suckahs and Meg’s brother SeanPlot wise as I stated earlier jumped then slowed for good reason then steadily built up with good pacing I don’t want to say too much or I’ll spoil but this was where McMann actually got her POV passages right on and I was able to follow the entire climax a okay Slowly but surely we watched Aaron get and twisted we watched Alex get and worried and we saw everyone training for preparedness because nothing as perfect as Artimé lasted foreverNow I will be very clear I thoroughly enjoyed myself with this book but I am not in love with it I was not crying when something crazy ridiculous happened but I was cheering for the characters I cared about them and they cared about me There were so many clever and original aspects of Unwanteds that it would be a sin to give the book less than 4 starsHowever there is enough stuff to set it right at 4 stars This is not a perfect book but I guarantee that something somewhere in this book will click your interest whether it be giant cheetah statues ridiculing blackboards or painting doorways in order to get to new placesWhoever first thought it was like Harry Potter and Hunger Games is a dunce because if they do related somehow it’s the littlest smidge I’m surprised my prediction was right this book had its own song Not a bright life changing heart stopping song but one worth hearing out and trying for yourselfI most certainly recommend this book because it brings back my imagination It has reawakened my need to write It can collect dust on your shelf for all I care but that cover is one I can appreciate with the utmost respectFor all you writers out thereIf you want me to be impressed you better be original or I won’t even try to enjoy your story

  4. Bern Bern says:

    I bought The Unwanteds last year after having loved Lisa McMann's other books Cryer's Cross and Dead To You The cover was beautiful the synopsis was interesting and there were even critics raving on how the book was like Harry Potter meets The Hunger Games I figured that with all those credentials The Unwanteds ought to be a pretty awesome read but it seems I was horribly dreadfully wrongNarrationThe omniscient and omnipresent third person narration is awful That kind of narration has to be done properly if it's not to fall in one or of the various writing potholes that come with it and Lisa McMann didn't achieve that Instead she forsakes dialogue and uses the narrator to tell you how all of the characters feel what they're thinking and what their plans for the future are This generates a complete lack of suspense and also makes the characters uninteresting since you get to know them through information that is blatantly hurled at you by the narratorCharactersThe characters in The Unwanteds are a complete mess They're rough carbon copies of characters in other series except the ones in this book are dense uninteresting or both They're all extremely childish and dumb and before someone argues that it's a children's book go read a Series of Unfortunate Events or Harry Potter or The Golden Compass Those are children's books and people in them aren't idioticOn Writing For ChildrenThe Unwanteds is painfully the kind of middle grade book that treats the reader as if he or she were daft There are no plot twists that can't be seen kilometres away and that aren't manhandled into the story so they can hit you right in the face If character's intentions aren't clear enough they either explain themselves verbally or have the narrator give their reasons or both Predicate nominatives are barely used which results in the kind of sentence that goes like Alex tried his best to climb the mountain but the mountain was too steep Normally that should be phrased Alex tried his best to climb the mountain but it was too steep but Lisa McMann wants you to be sure of what she means lest you get confused and somehow arrive on the conclusion that she's describing Alex as steep whatever that meansI actually ended up skimming the latter half of the book I don't know how other people skim but I just read dialogue and enough description to understand what's going on barely and I loathe skimming because it's a drastic last resort but it was either that or DNF this book and that beautiful cover deserved betterMain point is The Unwanteds is a terrible book that wastes some actually good ideas and then always acts on the assumption that its reader is dumb as a box of rocks It's neither charming and magical like Harry Potter nor interesting as The Hunger Games and I wouldn't recommend it for childrenteenagers or adults

  5. Lora Lora says:

    Without knowledge that life can be different there can be no desire to change it In the land of uill all thirteen year olds are sent to the annual Purge where they will be divided into Wanted and Unwanted For twin brothers Alex and Aaron this day is especially daunting as they are both now thirteen and reluctant to separate Or at least Alex is and would like to believe his brother reciprocates this sentimentOn the day of the Purge Alex is unsurprisingly categorized as Unwanted and his brother Aaron is chosen as a Wanted Feeling scared and helpless Alex goes off to meet his death along with his fellow Unwanteds But when he arrives at the Death Farmer's doorstep he is surprised to find a land where magic and creativity thrive Animated origami dragons; giant talking tortoises; and a montrous winged cheetah named Simber are just a few of the many astonishing creatures that can be found in ArtimeStill when the Unwanteds arrive in Artime they expect to be executed momentarily But instead all of the children are uickly assured by Mr Today that this shall not be their fateKnown to the people of uill as the Death Farmer Mr Today has spent many years perfecting Artime and making it a safe haven for the Unwanteds As you can imagine this revelation is as surprising as it is a saving grace for the kidsBut if any members of the uilitary found out of their rebellion it would mean a sure death for all involved This of course means that neither Alex nor any of the other Unwanteds are allowed to contact anyone — friends relatives authorities — in uillAlthough sad at the prospect of never seeing his brother again with his friends supporting him Alex moves into Artime and begins a whole new life Kirkus Reviews hails The Unwanteds as the Hunger Games meets Harry Potter After having read it myself I must agree This is not to say that I believe McMann is attempting to subtly copy the two bestselling series as a means to gain attention for her fledgling series No I believe that she has — whether knowingly or not I won't speculate — taken some of the very best aspects of each series and used them as the underpinning for a new middle grade dystopian fantasy series that will surely gain many fans The Unwanteds turned out to be a rather pleasant surprise for me Despite my having enjoyed some of McMann's earlier works I somehow felt that her voyage into the dystopian genre wouldn't turn out to my liking thus making my expectations low going in Luckily for me I was wrongAlbeit lacking a little in the personality department the characters are fresh and full of potential I can see them growing and coming into themselves as the series progressesFor being so young Lani — Alex's new friendpotential love interest — hasn't had an easy life Having her father uill's mayor pull strings to get her into the Purge at the premature age of twelve in order to be rid of her view spoileror so she believes hide spoiler

  6. Rachel Reads Ravenously Rachel Reads Ravenously says:

    Picked this up for my tween grad school project because I am asked for this series all the time at my job at the library But this turned out like The Lightning Thief for me and mehThis is just one of those books that ain't for me I gave it until 200 pages in and I'm DNFing with no rating because I just don't careFull review belowIn the land of uill there is a ceremony when its children turn thirteen; they are placed as Wanted Necessary and Unwanted The Wanteds go on to higher level important positions The Necessaries become the laborers And the Unwanteds are sent to be terminated Alex and Aaron are twins and on the day they are sorted Aaron is chosen as a Wanted and Alex an Unwanted Alex leaves his twin behind and accepts his fate that is until he and the other Unwanteds discover that they are not to be terminated but to live and thrive in a magical new land with all of the other Unwanteds Here they are expected to be creative pursue their art and learn battle training But as time goes by the Unwanteds discover their safe haven is under threat and they have to fight to save itThis book started off extremely morbid and did not strike me as tween at first Thirteen year olds being sent off to die because they built a stick house or sang a tune? It felt pretty extreme Once the plot developed into Artime the magical land it made sense in a way There had to be a force brought in for all of the creative children to improve uill itself reminded me of a mix of Pleasantville combined with the world in The Giver with a dictator like President Snow from the Hunger Games series I can see how tweens would love this book because the attributes that make them uniue are celebrated in this book in the world of Artime where they can sing and dance and act all day long with the added element of magic being involved The land of uill to me somewhat represented the oppression of the strict classroom where one is punished for being created Artime is a dream world that every tween would daydream about if it really existed The twin bond was an interesting addition making the story a bit uniue than the typical fantasy jaunt Even though Alex and Aaron are obviously very different from each other they still love each other and feel that special bond that twins seem to have and it made for a good conflict in the plot Lisa McMann is a great writer and she seems to have a knack for sucking tweens into her books

  7. Julia Julia says:

    On the cover of this book it says the Hunger Games meets Harry Potter OK the plot is a bit like that In fact the base plot in this book has potential Unfortunatelythe author never ever meets that potentialThe writing is bland the characters are flat There is no emotional engagement with the characters as such there is no suspense because ultimately who cares what happens to any of them Not to mention that there is a complete and utter lack of world building Sorry but my verdict somewhere between underwhelming not worth the paper it was printed on

  8. TheBookSmugglers TheBookSmugglers says:

    Originally reviewed on The Book Smugglers REVIEW First Impressions Thea When I first laid eyes on The Unwanteds and read the novel's intriguing summary I was hooked and knew it was one of my MUST GET OR DIE titles at BEA this year As a long time lover of both dystopias and fantasy the blend of these two seemingly incongruous components always wins me over I'm a little chagrined to say however that while The Unwanteds is an undeniably fun book featuring some wonderful characters and an imaginative magical system I had huge problems with the central premise of the story and plot aspects I liked the book well enough and am certain that both children and older readers will enjoy it too but I cannot shake my irritation even horror at the central dichotomy for the book Maybe I'm taking things too seriously But on that belowAna I don't think that Thea is taking things too seriously and I totally understand where she is coming from Although I think I liked the book a bit than she did I do think that there are considerable problems with the very premise of the novel However I made a conscious decision half way through to just accept it because I liked the characters and the writing and was able to enjoy the ride because of that You can call it self preservation and usually I would drive myself crazy over this On the Plot uill prevails when the strong survive so the motto of the isolated nation state that is uill reverberates in each of its citizens From birth children are indoctrinated to this lifestyle wherein anything artistic and creative is seen as anathema and only those that follow instructions and excel at the practical hard sciences and related subjects math economics etc are allowed to survive and succeed In the year of their thirteenth birthdays all the children of uill participate in The Purge and are sorted into three groups Wanteds who will go on to study at uill's university and become vital members of government and social planning Necessaries those who will do the menial labor for the good of the nation and Unwanteds The Unwanteds are immediately loaded on a transport and sent to the Great Lake of Boiling Oil to be killed so they will no longer a blight on uill's perfect society of intelligence and strength Alex has long known that he will be deemed an Unwanted but he is still shocked and terrified when he hears his name called on the list for execution during the year of his Purge Meanwhile his twin brother Aaron has surpassed their Necessary parents and has become a full fledged Wanted Alex steels himself for his fate and with the rest of the Unwanteds leaves uill forever and faces imminent deathExcept Alex doesn't die When they reach the Great Lake of Boiling Oil the devastated and terrifying landscape melts away to reveal a luscious paradise where emotions and artistic abilities are honored and magic is commonplace Alex and his new friends discover that Unwanteds have not been killed as eveyrone in uill believes but have taken refuge in Artimé under the protective wing of Mr Marcus Today As it turns out Today is an immensely powerful mage that has been duping High Priest Justine the iron willed leader of uill for years As Alex grows in his skills as an artist in Artimé becoming a powerful mage in his own right he cannot shake the feeling of longing he has for his beloved twin brother Aaron and he vows to find a way to save him and bring him to the magical realm beyond the coldness of uill But to do so puts all the Unwanteds and Artimé itself at terrible risk because if Aaron refuses to come with his twin uill and its mighty uillitary will come to destroy the safe haven that Mr Today has builtThea Let's start out with the good I loved the brutality of uill how instead of simply imprisoning or segregating Unwanteds they chose to have their children murdered it's terribly bleak but also incredibly believable in this type of black and white society On the other side of the spectrum I loved the idea of magic derived from art there are very uniue and wonderful spells that these children learn and create together from origami paper dragons that attack paintbrushes with invisibility spells magic three dimensional doors and rhyming couplets that can kill I also loved the menagerie that is Artimé rife with marvelous creatures like flying stone panthers art teachers with alligator heads and octopus appendages as well as artifacts like talking slatesblackboards and tubes that can transport people instantly from one room to another The writing and the story itself are executed well enough and the pages will fly by even if there is an annoying degree of repetition to certain plot elements let's put it this way every scene in uill had at least one chant of uill prevails when the strong survive Now that I think about it this would be a great drinking gamewell you know for adults BUTI have two huge un overlookable problems with The Unwanteds that seriously put a damper on my enjoyment of the story The biggest problem is the central premise of the novel and Ms McMann's portrayal of creativity In this world creativity ONLY comes from the arts ONLY those who are artistic in terms of painting acting musical instruments or dancing are considered creative and only they are singled out as Unwanteds and only they are the ones that can wield magic Let me use a few uotes to illustrateYou already know that your parents and the government of uill believe you to be eliminated by now You know they are not mourning for you They're doing what they do every day which is to work to build uill into a place of extreme power and super intelligence You dear children are what they call creative Imaginative The government and especially High Priest Justine wants to eliminate creative thinkers like you they see creativity as a weakness After all it could lead to something horriblelike magicand then there's this uoteAaron was being rewarded First for his excellent work in solving the beef problem for the high priest second for his insight into the matter of the Favored Farm at large and third for his program which outlined precisely how to run the farm most efficiently It had been his last assignment in math class and since all of the university students' work was checked by the governors it did not take long for Governor Strang to notice Aaron's penchant for economics And economics was something that the High Priest Justine was very fond of Especially because it always benefited herThis drives me absolutely insane Some of humanity's most brilliant and creative minds have been mathematicians scientists engineers and yes even economists as an economics graduate I resent these implications so very much The central premise of the novel precludes the possibility nay the reality that it takes creativity to be in the sciences or related subjects You're trying to tell me that Einstein's theorems are the product of a non creative mind? That brilliant economists like John Nash or Adam Smith or that Watson Crick and Franklin in their discovery of the double helix structure of DNA have not an iota of creativity in their being? What of Euler Da Vinci Tesla Curie Newton Darwin or Galileo? I'm sorry but I call BULLPUCKY The dichotomous environment that Ms McMann paints in her vision of Artimé versus uill shows Artimé as a land of plenty; a veritable paradise where technology is unneeded because yo they got MAGIC people are loved can express emotion and play around all day doing magical artsy things On the other side of the spectrum uill is a dilapidated rusty wasteland with brainwashed zombie like inhabitants crumbling infrastructure and a shortage of both food and water Those Unwanteds who are taken to Artimé are passionate intelligent young people capable of experiencing the whole spectrum of human emotionand those people in uill are the cruel small minded people that are good at math and keep their heads down and follow rulesIs this really the type of comparison that we want to see especially in a time when math and the hard and applied social sciences including the dreaded selfish economics are seeing a decline in enrollment and interest from students at all ages? So many children already think of these subjects as icky terrible burdens and books like The Unwanteds sure ain't helping much By the way can you imagine the magic that someone could do with math? PHYSICS? CHEMISTRY? How badass would those magical tools and spells be? Alas in Ms McMann's skewed world of The Unwanteds we shall never knowThe other main problem I had with the story was in the bizarre lack of power structure for magic it becomes clear at the end of the novel that Mr Today could vanuish the entire uill army with a single phrase Really? If that's the case then why have a war at all? Why wouldn't he have stopped Justine years and years ago and liberated the people of uill rather than let it fall into ruin and then live in supposed fear? It doesn't make any sort of logical sense Beyond that I didn't really buy that uill was so dilapidated after some fifty less? years and that people were so shut down and unemotional What exactly happened to this society? Was there a devastating war or something of that nature? There's never really any explanation given so as things stand uill seems to be such a terrible place just because it has to be in order for this to be a real dystopia And I'm not buying itAna It is the strangest thing I completely 100% agree with what Thea is saying and usually something like that would drive me completely insane If I had to compare this book with another recent Dystopian novel I would compare it with Delirium by Lauren Oliver I was not able to finish that book because I found it really hard to accept the premise that the society in that book chose to eradicate LOVE because it was such a negative emotion Not only because the premise itself is ridiculous why love and not hate for example? Surely hate is a negative emotion but also because it is hard to understand how love can be defined as one single straight forward emotion when there are so many things that come attached to it lust compassion friendship jealousy etc etc I think it is the same principle with creativity how can you single out what makes one person creative or not? As Thea so aptly says creativity does not solely exists when connected to arts Having said that I was able to accept the premise here much easily that I was able to accept when reading Delirium and I will put it down to Lisa McMann's writing it is not perfect far from it but it is engaging as hell because I think she gets writing characters just right And even though I had this niggling feeling at the back of my mind telling me that things did not make a lot of sense the ending and how easy it was to win the war was particularly well senseless I have to say that I was able to let go and enjoy On the Characters Thea While the central premise of the society and the plausibility of the plot are highly suspect I did in fact enjoy the characters this is what saved the book from meeting the wall for me The protagonist of the story is young Alex who earnestly loves his twin brother and is willing to risk everything to be reunited with Aaron once again The bond between twins is a uniue thing and the relationship between the Wanted and Unwanted brothers is a complicated bond steeped in both love and hate I appreciated that Alex is not a flawless character and makes freuent missteps especially in the treatment of his friends it's all part of the growing process right? Beyond Alex my favorite characters had to be Lani and Sam Lani is brilliant as the feisty smaller girl who tries to get Alex's attention and bring him back to reality when he's being a jerk Sam is curmudgeonly but for good cause and the friendship that develops between him and Alex is a tentative but wonderful thing Both of these characters also go through the ringer in the book's final climactic act with both confronting their parents and playing dramatic roles in the future of Artimé and uill It's awesome stuffAna This is what completely made the book for me I just LOVED the characters and how very flawed they were Alex was the main hero and he made loads of mistakes and some of them had real terrible repercussions He shared the spotlight with many other kids and out of all of them I loved Lani the most because she was totally and completely merciless when necessary I also really enjoyed how the author explored the connection between twins and whether it truly exist or not And I appreciated how the author actually never shied away from having her characters making terrible horrible decisions and acting on them In that sense even though the ending seemed a bit too easy overall each character went through the ringer before the final pages Granted those could have been better developed especially with regards to the aftermath of those decisions and how the character dealt with what they did Final Thoughts Observations Rating Thea I'm torn I loved the characters and the story zipped by uickly enough but I despise the disingenuous central premise of the novel I'm certain that many people will love this book and not have a problem with the dichotomous nature of creativity as defined in The Unwanteds but I am not one of them Ana As with any Dystopian novel I believe that a reader's level of enjoyment when reading The Unwanteds will be directly connected to how much they are willing to buy into the premise of the novel I liked the book well enough but did uestion my way through it Rating Thea 5 Good but I can't bring myself to truly recommend itAna 6 Good Recommended with Reservations

  9. hayden hayden says:

    May I just say how clever the premise for this book is? Everyone with a single ounce of creativity is Unwanted and executed and everyone who's athletic or intelligent stay and are deemed Wanted? That is single handedly the most clever premise I've read in a long time That's true fantasy a whole world spawned from just a single uestion McMann doesn't fall flat of what I expected from this wonderful idea In fact I didn't even know what this was going to be about until I read the Introduction I was engrossedAnd also may I say how big and how unexpected of a switch up this is from McMann's normal stuff paranormal romance I know? I feel like this is a completely different author here because her paranormal books are written in such short edgy gripping sentences and this book is written in vivid languid fluid prose that just jumps off the page and into your head I can't say which I like better because in her paranormal stuff you're just constantly flipping pages and you're haunted by the story but in this middle grade fantasy novel you're just completely entranced by the beautiful language and you can't stop readingNo matter what I officially present McMann the Most Versatile Author Award I just made that On a complete whim Seriously though How can you not agree with me? Freakin' polar opposites here and she can do 'em both That takes some serious writing mojoThis has to be the most creative book I've ever read McMann doesn't fall short of my expectations which I appreciate to the fullest extent The ending of this book is totally open ended so you really have no idea of knowing whether or not this will be a series Honestly I'd just prefer this to be a stand alone but I'm open to another book or three of THE UNWANTEDSGripping and languid THE UNWANTEDS is McMann's most creative book yet with a premise to die for; I was uickly engrossed into Alex's world of misery and new hope and when I reached the end I was deeply saddened saddened that is by the fact that I'm left hanging with no seuel within reach I strongly recommend you pick this up

  10. Julia Julia says:

    I cannot explain how good this book was

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