Thursday 18 April 2019

Review on Unboxed

When Alix was thirteen, she made a promise to her friends that they would meet up in five years to open a time capsule they had made. However, everything Changes when Millie dies. Alix promised Millie they would stick to the plan and open the box without her, but with every item that is removed from the box come memories of Millie, both happy and sad. After years apart, the friends come together to grieve the loss of their friend.

I knew this book would break me the second I learned what it was about, but apparently I enjoy pain and suffering, as I still decided to read it. The book follows Alix, a girl who's friend Millie has recently died. Alix meets up with her three friends who she hasn't seen in years to open the time capsule they had made with Millie. This book was equally heart warming and heart breaking. It's always difficult to lose a close friend or family member, but sometimes it can be worse when you lose someone you haven't spoken to in a while. I think it's rare to stay close to childhood friends, as everyone moves away and starts down a new path. Eventually, you start realising you have nothing in common with that person anymore and lose touch despite still caring about them. This is exactly what happened to Alix, and her school friends, and Millie's death added a layer of guilt to their grief for not staying in touch with her.

Even though this is a short book, the characters were fleshed out and given their own personalities and problems. My favourite subplot was Alix worrying that her friends would find out she was gay. As she hasn't seen them in a while, she has no idea how they will react, and is reluctant to let them know. I loved that she was brave enough to read her letter to them, and that they all reacted positively. No one ever just comes out once, it's something that people in the LGBT community have to do constantly, and it never seems to get any easier. I was happy for Alix that her friends were so accepting and didn't make a big deal out of it.

I have to talk a little about Ash, who has probably made it onto my list of most hated characters. Ash was Zara's boyfriend, and the fifth wheel that no one wanted. He was the most unsympathetic asshole the world has ever known, and instead of dropping Zara off with her friends then leaving, he stuck around and made horrible comments. Even though the time capsule was clearly important to Zara, he was constantly telling her to hurry up so they could leave, and thought it was okay to make fun of their grief, and commented on how Zara had never mentioned Millie to him so she couldn't have liked her that much. I was so happy when Zara finally stuck up for herself and told Ash to leave without her. Ash was completely toxic. Anyone who doesn't support their partner when they're grieving clearly don't deserve them. I loved how even though she hadn't seen them in a while, Zara's friends were the ones who were there to support her, and were the only people who truly understood the grief she felt. Sometimes the only people who can truly understand how you feel are those going through the same thing, and I was glad that they all had each other for emotional support. 

I really enjoyed this book and think it's perfect for anyone new to YA or reading for fun in general. The large font makes it easy on the eyes, and the paper being a pale yellow helps the contrast to be less harsh. As someone who can't read outside in the summer without being blinded by the bright white paper, I think more books should be like this! Non Pratt is quickly becoming one of my favourite authors, and I'm looking forward to reading more of her books in the future!