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And Then Everything Unraveled by Jennifer Sturman

And Then Everything UnraveledDelia’s summer of lazily surfing under the California sun turns into just a fleeting dream when her internet genius mother T.K. Truesdale goes missing. The unexplainable disappearance of the research vessel T.K. was aboard leads most people to believe T.K. is dead—but Delia knows better. It would be impossible for someone as intelligent and organized as T.K. to just disappear from thin air. Nonetheless, Delia is sent to New York City to live with her polar opposite aunts, her new guardians. Now Delia has to deal with one ditzy but bohemian chic aunt, another uptight and severe, not to mention the snobby elite new school she’s been enrolled in and the unpredictable boy she shouldn’t like—all while trying to determine the whereabouts of her mother. But the deeper into the investigation Delia gets, the more she realizes that some people aren’t who she thought them to be, for better or worse, and that T.K.’s disappearance is just the beginning of something huge—and hugely dangerous.

And Then Everything Unraveled has the makings of a great mystery, with strange disappearances, shady characters, cryptic messages, danger, and the promise of a scandalous international conspiracy. What I love about this story is how Sturman puts everything in the context of the global economy, particularly fossil fuel dependence and corporate greed; it makes this mystery seem so much more important and relevant to the world today. Unfortunately, this is probably the best written part of the novel. The characters are not sufficiently developed; I understand that an important part of mysteries are the cryptic minor characters, but that does not mean that the main characters need to be neglected as well. I couldn’t get a clear image of Delia’s personality, and I don’t like how she is defined mostly by her search for her mother. She just seems kind of empty to me, and her mannequin role to her aunt Charley is more bothersome than an accurate portrayal of a teen girl. Sturman’s attempt at romance is also awkward. How Delia’s mental paralysis over a sighting her crush Quinn turns into Quinn being in love with her doesn’t completely add up, a situation only made worse by the fact that the reader barely gets to know Quinn’s character. Plus, I really dislike the end to this novel because practically everything is left up in the air, and I will be incredibly disappointed if And Everything Unraveled doesn’t get a sequel, because that would make this novel seem pointless.

Though lacking in character development, And Then Everything Unraveled is still an enjoyable, creative, and well structured mystery. I recommend it for fans of Dream Girl by Lauren Mechling and Linda Gerber’s Death by… series.

Rating: 3.75

Review copy from publisher Scholastic

2 munch(es) :

katie said...

I just read this and I am also hoping for a sequel. The end was just so open. Great review!

B.A.M. Book Reviews said...

That looks pretty interesting, something different from what I usually read. Good review :)

-Briana

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