20 December 2017

Unhinged by A.G. Howard: Review

Title: Unhinged (Splintered #2)
Author: A.G. Howard
Publication Date: Jan. 7, 2014
Find: Amazon | Goodreads
Alyssa Gardner has been down the rabbit hole and faced the bandersnatch. She saved the life of Jeb, the guy she loves, and escaped the machinations of the disturbingly seductive Morpheus and the vindictive Queen Red. Now all she has to do is graduate high school and make it through prom so she can attend the prestigious art school in London she's always dreamed of.

That would be easier without her mother, freshly released from an asylum, acting overly protective and suspicious. And it would be much simpler if the mysterious Morpheus didn’t show up for school one day to tempt her with another dangerous quest in the dark, challenging Wonderland—where she (partly) belongs.

As prom and graduation creep closer, Alyssa juggles Morpheus’s unsettling presence in her real world with trying to tell Jeb the truth about a past he’s forgotten. Glimpses of Wonderland start to bleed through her art and into her world in very disturbing ways, and Morpheus warns that Queen Red won’t be far behind.

If Alyssa stays in the human realm, she could endanger Jeb, her parents, and everyone she loves. But if she steps through the rabbit hole again, she'll face a deadly battle that could cost more than just her head.

A.G. Howard is the #1 NYT & International Bestselling author of several young adult retellings and spinoff novels, including her gothic Alice in Wonderland Splintered Series, and RoseBlood, a Phantom of the Opera inspired adaptation.

When writing, A.G. is most at home weaving the melancholy, magical, and macabre into her settings and scenes. In her downtime, she enjoys rollerblading, gardening, and visiting 18th century graveyards or abandoned buildings to appease her muse’s darker side.

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Unhinged didn't quite manage to sweep me off my feet like it's predecessor did. And, I've tried to think about why, and I honestly think it's because of a partiality on my part.

Alyssa, the protagonist of the series, is in a bit of a love-triangle, if that wasn't made clear before. And, I think because of my preference towards one of the boys, and because it wasn't so clear that that's whom Alyssa has the strongest feelings for, I kind of ended up putting this book down more than I did with Splintered.

Here's the thing, though, it's also probably because less of this story takes place in Wonderland. So, maybe that's what I love most about this story--the Wonderlandness, if that's a word. :)

Don't get me wrong, however. I'm still madly in love with all of the characters. Alyssa, Jeb, and Morpheus are all excitingly interesting personalities to read about. And the pacing of the story is never lacking. In fact, I can't think of a single slow part in the book. Howard is an expert at reeling in a reader. And she also knows how to include side characters and make them integral to the story.

And, the ending... Well, the ending is why I immediately started reading Ensnared.

Also, can I just say how much I love the German cover of Unhinged? I don't know why... Maybe because this is how I perceived Morpheus in my mind...

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