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Friday, March 30, 2012

[Review] Unraveling Isobel by Eileen Cook

Title: Unraveling Isobel
Author: Eileen Cook
Pages: 304 (Hardcover)
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: January 3, 2012

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.


I normally take notes while I'm reading, so I don't forget things that I want to mention in my reviews, but I didn't for Unraveling Isobel. There just wasn't anything that grabbed my attention that I felt like discussing. I was pretty indifferent to Isobel herself. She was a little quirky, but not very interesting. Her mom was selfish, wholly dependent on her husband, and irritating. Dick, the new husband, was a creep but I was at least interested in what the heck he was up to. I also wondered about Nathaniel, Isobel's new stepbrother and love interest. He's a bit odd, and an outsider, but he had a sense of humor about it.

The mystery surrounding all of the deaths and disappearance that occurred around the house did keep me reading though. Was it the house itself or the strange family living there? Or is it all coincidence and Isboel has actually inherited her father's mental illness? Unfortunately, the answers aren't that satisfying and seem a bit incomplete.

There was one thing that really bothered me, even though it wasn't important at all. It's just that I noticed it, and then it continued to bug me:

"There wasn't even a dishwasher... (page 44)"
"Nathaniel pulled another pan out of the dishwasher... (page 78)"

Small inconsistency, but it was annoying. Overall, I liked Unraveling Isobel. It had creepy moments and funny moments, but nothing about it really stood out to me.


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