Published January 3rd, 2012 by Simon Pulse
//Amazon//B&N//The Book Depository//
Isobel’s life is falling apart. Her mom just married some guy she met on the internet only three months before, and is moving them to his sprawling, gothic mansion off the coast of nowhere. Goodbye, best friend. Goodbye, social life. Hello, icky new stepfather, crunchy granola town, and unbelievably good-looking, officially off-limits stepbrother.
But on her first night in her new home, Isobel starts to fear that it isn’t only her life that’s unraveling—her sanity might be giving way too. Because either Isobel is losing her mind, just like her artist father did before her, or she’s seeing ghosts. Either way, Isobel’s fast on her way to being the talk of the town for all the wrong reasons.
Isobel has been uprooted for her senior year. Leaving her friends and her school behind, she's forced to move onto an island that isn't the most . . . welcoming, I suppose you could say.
The thing I really like about this book is how realistic Isobel is. She's upset about the move, feeling like she doesn't fit in, and while some people may thing she's whiny, I think that's the way most people would react, especially if they had to move into an old and rundown house like Isobel. That kind of realism made it easy for me to connect with her and understand her.
Another thing that's awesome about Isobel is that while she's seeing ghosts and wondering if she's crazy, you're right there with her, wondering how sane she truly is.
Nate, Isobel's new step-brother, is a character I can't say much about. I love how willing he is to help Isobel, but I feel like we never learn enough about him. He's just kind of there. I think Nate is supposed to be a fairly important character, but I just don't know enough about him for him to seem real.
The mystery in Unraveling Isobel gripped me, and, for the most part, kept me guessing. While there were a few parts that were predictable, I love that this is basically a mystery/contemporary/romance all in one, with some light paranormal thrown in.
The secondary characters are a great addition. They've all got their own personalities that come through very clearly and actually add something to the story - they don't seem like they have no purpose. I have to admit that Isobel's mother annoyed me most of the time, and I hate how suddenly at the end everything seemed to be okay again. If I was Isobel, I wouldn't have just been able to "forget" what my mother had done to me.
Overall: Unraveling Isobel is a quick, fun read. But the thing about it is that it's forgettable. I won't spend days thinking about it, remembering the characters and imagining new things that could have happened to them, wishing for a sequel. So while I enjoyed reading it, I know that three months from now, I probably won't even remember it. 3.5 stars.