“Unison Spark” – Would Appeal to Avid Sci-Fi Readers, but Not Me


I must admit that I was intrigued to read and review "Unison Spark", a newfangled young adult novel by Henry Holt.

I must admit that I was intrigued to read and review "Unison Spark", a newfangled young adult novel by Henry Holt. And while its synopsis was cleverly written and drew me in right away, I must say that I was disappointed by the book's complete antithesis of this. I got about half way through before I discovered that this book and I were not meant for each other, but that it might appeal to a different group of readers.


In that case, I should describe what type of a reader I am. I prefer suspense and action novels that are complete page-turners (I suppose I am also slightly impatient…I like when a book draws me in right away, rather than me reading a few chapters before it does so). When I first started Unison Spark, I was completely and utterly confused. But I kept reading, to try and get a taste of the book. Sure enough, I began to somewhat understand what was going on.


This book seemed to be set in an incredibly futuristic time period. I compare it to that of the "Hunger Games", where a society is split into different levels, each at a different economic status and way of life. Mistletoe, the main character, lives on the bottom level (one of the poorest ones) . Ambrose Truax ends up going down to meet Mistletoe after a series of bizarre events. He is the son of one of the richest individuals on his level (a wealthy, luxurious one). The primary form of business and way for people to escape (in thsi time period) is into a virtually and realistically portrayed world through a program called Unison – similar to Facebook or Myspace today. Social networking sites like Facebook are the "ancestors" of Unison, which is a program that seems to "know the user better than he/she knows him/herself".


After receiving a peculiar message in his dreams and a transmission through Unison, Ambrose decides to go to Little Saigon, the place where Mistletoe lives. Together, they encounter a number of challenges in Little Saigon. I wish I could say more, but this book is so futuristically written that it was difficult for me to follow. Halfway through, I couldn't continue – I was so confused. I gave it a shot, but I think I just wasn't meant for this book. Avid sci-fi readers might enjoy it, and I must say it isn't a badly written book. Even if it didn't cater to my personal preferences, I still think it could be a good book for a different kind of reader.


I wish anyone who wants to take this book on as a challenge the best of luck. After all, we aren't all going to enjoy every single book we read.


Publication Info:

Unison Spark written by Henry Holt

Copyright: 2011

Henry Holt and Company, LLC

232 Pages – topics: 1. Science Fiction