Review: Unlocked by Margo Kelly

Title: Unlocked
Author: Margo Kelly
Pages: 304
Genre: Mystery, YA
Source: Free ARC from Merit Press

Rating: B+

Note: As stated under the Source (above), I received this book for free from Merit Press via Edelweiss in exchange for my honest review (and trust me, honest is always what you’ll get).

Summary: After a seemingly harmless encounter with a hypnotist, Hannah starts to feel like she is losing her grip on reality. Strange things are happening, she’s seeing things that simply can’t be real, and people she loves are getting hurt. It feels like she is somehow responsible and the people she knows the best are starting to turn on her. Is she really losing her mind or is something more sinister going on?

Review: The premise of this book was pretty unusual and quite creative. The idea that being hypnotized might unlock your subconscious mind in a way that allows “others” to control you, some of those others being human, and perhaps some less than, all without you being fully aware? Kind of terrifying right? And is that kind of intrusion something we can fight off?

And then there is the whole theme of mental illness and how it impacts our lives and the lives of others, how people we trust and love treat us when it’s clear we are starting to unravel. When things are difficult, we learn a lot about the people we surround ourselves with, about their dedication and loyalty to us, how truly unconditional their love is. And those hard times also open us up to relationships that we didn’t value as much before, perhaps shedding light on things we weren’t able to see previously.

Don’t get me wrong. This book isn’t all seriousness. At heart, it’s a quasi-paranormal YA mystery/suspense novel that is highly entertaining. But, it does touch on what I mentioned above, and that is a positive thing.

While I normally LOVE paranormal stuff, it felt like an afterthought in this story. There wasn’t a deep enough dive into that element of the story, so it came off feeling irrelevant and superficial. I can see where it could have gone, but it never really got there, so it was really more of a distraction and didn’t lend much to the overall story. Aside from that, it was a great book.

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