Title: The Unnaturalists
Author: Tiffany Trent
Publication date: August 14th, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Genre(s): Young Adult (Steampunk)
The Unnaturalists was not what I was expecting. The synopsis gave me a look on what is to expect and to come: adventure, a thrilling ride, and a 'web of deception and intrigue' but unfortunately what I got was a big pile of confusion. To say that The Unnaturalists was confusing is an understatement. Throughout most of the book I didn't know what was going on, who is who, what is what and what the hell they were looking for. My facial expressions while reading ranged from confusion, to shock, to realization, then back to confusion. It was an endless cycle and by the end, I just gave up. I kept on reading without really getting what was going on. There was too much going on. I really wished for some sort of guide that explained who's who and what's what because without it I failed miserably at reading. I came out of this book the same as I came, in with an addition of bewilderment and overall hopelessness on ever understanding this book. To begin with, I need to make a list of all the people and creatures in the book. If they were explained clearly along with their role in this steampunk world I would have had no problem. But the characters would suddenly pop up with no prior or post explanation and you are left trying to figure out what the hell that thing was and if it's even human.
... and it goes on. There is also the creeping waste that I barely understood and the role of each of the characters. I don't consider myself someone who gets easily confused while reading. I tend to like complex stories with deeper less obvious meanings but The Unnaturalists took this to another ball court. On top of not understanding the characters, the plot itself was lacking. To explain it better, the plot has a bit of EVERYTHING. Post Apocalyptic elements, steampunk elements, paranormal elements, magic, dystopian world, and so much more. When I finally grasp my head around an idea, ten other pop up that bring me back to square zero. The plot was so disconnected for me, same with the characters that I honestly kept on reading just to finish the book. The amount of details reserved for some parts of the books were over the top but other parts, such as the introduction of characters were totally ignored. I would have personally enjoyed it more if I just knew what was going on and who all these characters were. I mean, a story without characters isn't much of anything right?
I really wanted to like The Unnaturalists and even stuck until the end, but even the end couldn't appease me in the least bit. Everything was rushed and I just was not satisfied. I personally wouldn't recommend it to anyone but feel free to pick it up yourself, you might like it.