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Unwind

Unwind

(Book #1 of Unwind Dystology)
For Ages: 12 and up
  • reading group guide
  • 28awards
In a society where unwanted teens are salvaged for their body parts, three runaways fight the system that would "unwind" them

Connor's parents want to be rid of him because he's a troublemaker. Risa has no parents and is being unwound to cut orphanage costs. Lev's unwinding has been planned since his birth, as part of his family's strict religion. Brought together by chance, and kept together by desperation, these three unlikely companions make a harrowing cross-country journey, knowing their lives hang in the balance. If they can survive until their eighteenth birthday, they can't be harmed -- but when every piece of them, from their hands to their hearts, are wanted by a world gone mad, eighteen seems far, far away.

In Unwind, Boston Globe/Horn Book Award winner Neal Shusterman challenges readers' ideas about life -- not just where life begins, and where it ends, but what it truly means to be alive.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416994961 | 
  • June 2009 | 
  • Grades 7 and up | 
  • Lexile HL740
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List Price $9.99
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Video

The Unwind Dystology

Neal Shusterman shares the secrets behind the New York Times bestselling Unwind Dystology.

Reading Group Guide

A Reading Group Guide to

Unwind

By Neal Shusterman
About the Book

In the not-too-distant future, teens Connor, Risa, and Lev are on the run for their lives. Following the Second Civil War, between pro-choice and pro-life forces, the United States now allows parents to unwind their unwanted and difficult kids between the ages of thirteen and eighteen: Their bodies are surgically taken apart and all the organs and tissue are used in other people. According to the law, the kids aren't considered dead, they're "living in a divided state." But Connor, Risa, and Lev, and thousands of other teens slated for "unwinding", don't see it that way. They choose instead to "kick AWOL," or run away. Unwind follows these three across the country as they travel together, split up, and meet again when their destinies cross in a Harvest Camp where they are slated to be unwound.
Prereading Research/Activities

Have students research those who helped endangered people in the past. They can study the pre-Civil War Underground Railroad, a vast network of individuals who helped runaway slaves make their way to freedom. They can also research the stories of those who helped Jews escape the Nazis, including Oskar Schindler, Raoul Wallenberg, and Chiune Sugihara.

The novel takes places after the "Second Civil War." The real Civil War was fought primarily over the issue of slavery. Learn about recent civil wars in other cou see more

More Books from this Author

About the Author

Neal Shusterman
Photograph © Neal Shusterman

Neal Shusterman

Neal Shusterman is the New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty award-winning books for children, teens, and adults, including The Unwind Dystology, The Skinjacker trilogy, Downsiders, and The Schwa Was Here, which won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for fiction. He also writes screenplays for motion pictures and television shows. The father of four children, Neal lives in California. Visit him at Storyman.com and Facebook.com/NealShusterman.

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