Urban fantasy fiction.
An otherworldly murder mystery.
Labyrinths exploring the past.
Angels and undying men.
One brilliant forensic therapist.
^^^^ That's a lot of good reasons to read last week's weekly read, UNRAVELING by Karen Lord. If any of the above piques your interest, then it's my pleasure to introduce you to this brilliantly imaginative novel! This book is a wildly fantastic ride and one that felt oddly reminiscent of A WRINKLE IN TIME meets ALICE WONDERLAND meets the adult darkness and mystique of a Neil Gaiman novel. Fun!
Lord throws you right into the premise of the story immediately alongside the novel's protagonist, forensic therapist Miranda who's just solved -- or so she thinks -- the identity of the perpetrator behind the recent rash of serial killings in her city. With Miranda, we're swept up by a couple of undying brothers named Chance and Trickster into a mystic world of labyrinths. Whew. Get that?
So these labyrinths? They have the dope ability to take those who walk them through their own pasts, as well others... and since Miranda is the forensic therapist on the serial killer's case, she happens to be the perfect person to walk the labyrinths and get to the source of who really behind the murders. How's that's for an adventure?
Miranda's an intelligent, calm character and honestly someone I'd probably admire in real life for their preternatural ability to stay cool in the most wild of circumstances. When Miranda's at the start of her hero's journey and swept into the fantastic world of labyrinths Chance and Trickster whisk her to, they reveal their task of hunting down the mastermind behind the killings is a duty tasked from particularly high heavenly source and being overseen being terrifying, genderless angels. Yes, there are angels in this book and they are described as appropriately as majestic as you'd think they would likely be in real life. And Miranda handles it like an absolute champ. We love a girl who can handle some sh*t!
The real world of UNRAVELING has some similarities to our own, but vast differences as well. The City, as Miranda calls her home is a place where a caste system not only exists, but is actively enforced -- a divide between the Freemen who live 'rightfully' in the City and transients and outsiders who require permits to stay. I won't spoil anything, but this creates a tension between classes that drives a clear and striking undercurrent throughout the book.
UNRAVELING is a breathtaking read that people who enjoy stimulating, mind bending stories will enjoy. The characters swim through through scenes of character's pasts, particularly the one's close to the heart of the mystery behind the murders.