Unboxed is about four teenagers who come together after several months apart. In previous years, they had put together a time capsule about their best summer with a friend who was dying. Now that their friend has passed, they reunite to open the box.
I have never read a Barrington Stoke book before, other than their Little Gems imprint which is aimed at early readers of Spike’s kind of age. Their young adult books, of which I knew existed, have passed me by for a long time. That is until I saw Unboxed in my local library. I will read anything by Non Pratt, she’s awesome and I love her books. I have a few of them but as I havent been reading much over the last few years, I have missed some of them and this was one. I didnt realise it was a Barrington Stoke since I started reading though.
The publisher specialises in publishing books for dyslexic and reluctant readers. I have never been either of these things, but understand completely why its important to have a publisher like this. They print books that are just as amazing story-wise for readers who find it difficult to read, or don’t particularly like reading, to help them find enjoyment in something that is hard for them. Unboxed is a perfect example of the kind of book I know some of my friends would have loved to have around when I was a teenager. I wish these kinds of books were around back then, but I’m so glad that at least they are now.
Unboxed was a true tale of friendship, how time away doesn’t matter and how people can grow to be the best of themselves. Alix, the main character, was brilliant and I really loved her. She has made mistakes, but she has grown since them and undestands that they need righting – no matter how scary that is. Dean was a heartbreaking character to get to know because he honestly believed that no one beleived in him. I really felt for him and I wanted to reach out and help him see that he didnt have to be what people expected him to be. Zara and Ben were a little harder to get to know from the book, and although I warmed to them both, they were definitely not my favourite of the foursome you meet. The bereavement aspect of the book was difficult to read, but was handled really well and I loved that although Millie wasn’t actually in the book, she still made me laugh and I felt like I knew her too by the end of it.
Unboxed is a very easy read, thats kind of the point, but it didnt make it less enjoyable. In fact it made it more so. It was a light hearted and enjoyable book that touched on some heavy themes without making them feel so heavy. There was LGBT representation, and true friendships reformed. I read the entire thing in two sittings… only stopping because I had to go and pick Spike up from her Grandma’s! I would definitely recommend it to anyone who loves coming of age style stories.
Unboxed was published by Barrington Stoke in August 2016. My copy was loaned from my local library.
For more info or to buy the book please visit: