Review Detail

The Unwanteds Featured
Kids Fiction 3059
Much Better Than Mann's YA Books
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Anyone who knows me well probably knows that I'm not a big fan of Lisa McMann. All of her prior books sounded good, but then were utter disappointments, largely because of the rather uninspired writing. I didn't even want to read this one, but felt compelled to because of its dystopian nature. Well, I am happy to report that McMann can actually write complex sentences. Hurrah! Now I am curious why she writes real sentences for a middle grade book, but not for young adult ones. Does she think teens will refuse to read anything that puts a subject and a verb in the same place?

Ranting over. This was a really fun read, very much unlike any of her previous books, both in style and tone. There are some dark aspects, but, for the most part, this is a story of a magical world that any kid would love to live in. I mean who doesn't want to go to a school where your room is made for you and full of stuff you love, where you can travel anywhere by tube, where you can eat whenever you want, where you take classes only in the arts and where you get to learn magic spells? I would still prefer Hogwarts, but Artimé is pretty cool.

My favorite character by far was Lani. She walks everywhere with her nose stuck in a book...what's not to like? Most of the others I didn't particularly bond with, but they were interesting. Actually, the one I disliked the most was Marcus Today, founder of Artimé. The problem is just that he kind of creeped me out, although I'm not really sure why. I think he reminds me a little bit of Willy Wonka that way.

The dystopian elements are pretty minimal, mostly just in the first chapter or two, so if that's what you want, you probably be disappointed. If you're looking for a fun story that glorifies the arts or you just love stories of magic, give this one a try, even if, like me, you were unimpressed by McMann's previous efforts.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

The Devil Makes Three
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
When Tess and Eliot stumble upon an ancient book hidden...
African Icons: Ten People Who Shaped History
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Meet the ten remarkable kings, queens, inventors, scholars, and visionaries...
Liar's Room
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
This spooky stand-alone from MG horror expert Dan Poblocki is...
Manu: A Graphic Novel
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Set at a magical school for girls, a funny and...
Barakah Beats
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twelve-year-old Nimra Sharif has spent her whole life in Islamic...
Cold-Blooded Myrtle (Myrtle Hardcastle #3)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Myrtle Hardcastle—twelve-year-old Young Lady of Quality and Victorian amateur detective—is...
How to Get Away with Myrtle (Myrtle Hardcastle #2)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Myrtle Hardcastle has no desire to go on a relaxing...
Playing the Cards Your Dealt
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Ten-year-old Anthony Joplin has made it to double digits! Which...
Kyle's Little Sister
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
My name is Grace, not "Kyle's little sister!" ...
Ground Zero
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
In time for the twentieth anniversary of 9/11, master storyteller...
Final Season
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
From New York Times bestselling author and former NFL player...
Sunny Makes a Splash (Sunny #4)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The latest in the New York Times bestselling Sunny series...
The Magical Reality of Nadia (The Magical Reality of Nadia #1)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Inspired by the author's real life experiences, this rollicking, charming...
What Adults Don’t Know About Architecture: Inspiring young minds to build a more beautiful world
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Children are rarely introduced properly to architecture, but there are...
The Curse of the Crystal Cavern (The Pathfinders Society #2)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fresh from their hair-raising adventures in The Mystery of the...
The Mystery of the Moon Tower (The Pathfinders Society)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Kyle is a new kid in town who likes to...

Latest Member Reviews

Secrets in Translation
 
5.0
"After living in America and having trouble fitting in, Alex is hesitant to return to Italy. However, her parents won't..."
Where It All Lands
 
4.7
"WHERE IT ALL LANDS is an emotional YA contemporary read about the ripples of our choices. A seemingly random decision..."
Instructions for Dancing
 
5.0
"INSTRUCTIONS FOR DANCING is an engaging YA contemporary about romance, family, and coming of age. Evie stopped believing in love..."
Heiress Apparently (Daughters of the Dynasty, #1)
 
4.0
"What worked: This was a fun take on Crazy Rich Asians meets descendants of Empress Regent of China. Gemma..."
Somewhere Between Bitter and Sweet
 
5.0
"What worked: I loved this engaging, heart-felt story with one strong Chicanx protagonist. Think I'M NOT YOUR PERFECT MEXICAN DAUGHTER..."
Heartbreakers and Fakers
 
5.0
"HEARTBREAKERS AND FAKERS is a consuming YA contemporary romance that I absolutely devoured. Penny wakes up on the lawn after..."
Rent a Boyfriend
 
5.0
"I'm not even sure where to begin with this review, to be honest, because I loved this book so much...."
Sister of the Bollywood Bride
 
4.0
"SISTER OF THE BOLLYWOOD BRIDE is an engaging YA contemporary read about sisterhood, family, and community with a dash of..."
10 Truths and a Dare
 
3.7
"10 TRUTHS AND A DARE is a book about family and owning up to your mistakes. Olivia is about to..."
Yes No Maybe So
 
5.0
"I should start by saying I don't normally read books involving politics because I read to escape real life. That..."
Made in Korea
 
4.7
"MADE IN KOREA is a sweet romantic-comedy about competition, family, and reaching for your dreams. Valerie runs a very successful..."
Perfectly Parvin
 
5.0
"PERFECTLY PARVIN is a laugh-out-loud, charming YA contemporary fiction read. Parvin is about to begin her freshman year of high..."
Choices
 
5.0
"It's no secret that I adore Michelle's books, so it was fun reading one of her earlier books. ..."
Gutter Girl (Twin River High, #1)
 
3.3
"GUTTER GIRL is a unique YA contemporary romance that follows two main characters, Jace and McKenna. McKenna is an outcast..."
All Kinds of Other
 
4.3
"ALL KINDS OF OTHER is an intriguing YA contemporary that follows two boys as they start at a new school...."
Counting Down with You
 
5.0
"COUNTING DOWN WITH YOU is a heart-wrenching and visceral YA contemporary read. Karina (Myra is her familial name) is a..."
The Other Side of Perfect
 
4.3
"THE OTHER SIDE OF PERFECT is an engrossing YA contemporary about loss, grief, moving on, friendship, and sisterhood. Alina has..."
In the Penalty Box
 
4.0
" The Story: Willow is a figure skater who has been sidelined from her team by an injury...."
Perfect on Paper
 
5.0
"PERFECT ON PAPER is a delightful YA romantic comedy. Darcy has been operating Locker 89 at her school for years...."
11 Paper Hearts
 
4.3
"Reviewed for YA Books Central A super cute and sweet story. The story: A year ago, a..."