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The Cougar Star

The Student News Site of Clague Middle School

The Cougar Star

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The Cougar Star

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Untwine: a book review

“Untwine” by Edwidge Danticat is an essential book guaranteed to steal a place in your heart and stay there, forever.
Saanvi Kulkarni
“Untwine” by Edwidge Danticat is an essential book guaranteed to steal a place in your heart and stay there, forever.

“Isabelle didn’t need to call my name. Not because of the twin telepathy thing people always talk about, but because we were holding hands. We were holding hands the tightest we have ever held hands in our entire lives. We were holding hands just as we had on the day we were born.” – “Untwine” by Edwidge Danticat

To describe “Untwine” by Edwidge Danticat in one word: spellbinding. “Untwine” is an essential read. It is a poignant and thoughtful tale complete with heartbreak, loss, grief, mystery, humor, and much, much more that is guaranteed to make an imprint on your heart forever.

“Untwine” centers on 16-year-old Giselle Boyer, who knows the value of family. With her parents separating, her bond with her twin sister Isabelle is stronger than ever. Or it had been, before a car crash splintered it apart.

Giselle is hospitalized, unable to move or speak. She doesn’t have the faintest clue as to the whereabouts of her family, and she’s on the brink of giving up completely. Whenever her mind grows incapable of processing what’s going on around her, she slips “under”, and every time, it’s always a possibility that she might stay “under” forever.

Throughout the book, she relives different memories to rediscover herself, and, most importantly, what her relationship with Isabelle really meant to her. Their love for each other had been stronger than anything, after all— in fact, nearly invincible.

When an unimaginable tragedy strikes her family, Giselle soon finds herself lost in a painful cycle of longing and regret, overcome by grief but still unable to express herself. It’s her choice now, whether or not she will let herself head down the path of recovery, or choose to remain in her heartbroken state.

Either way, her life has been forever changed.

I would undoubtedly give “Untwine” five out of five stars. Once I started, I failed to put it down, no matter how desperately I needed to for the sake of time. Danticat has artfully woven together powerful themes and raw emotion into one big tapestry of a story that is impossible to put down, and I guarantee that you will never be the same again after reading it. Danticat’s skill of making the story come to life is absolutely breathtaking as you live not only Giselle’s story, but also feel Giselle’s emotions— and I’ll admit, I did tear up at a few parts of the book.

The make-up of the characters is also an important component of the story. The characters are very realistic but dreamlike at the same time. It’s like I was always beginning to live Giselle’s life but not exactly becoming her, and that feeling of being stuck in between only reinforced the lost, broken feeling Giselle experiences in the book.

Bursting with powerful characters, deep messages, and heartfelt emotion, “Untwine” is an eloquent and thought-provoking novel that I definitely recommend to all. This book can be found at most libraries and bookstores, including the Clague library, Ann Arbor District Library, and Barnes & Noble.

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About the Contributor
Saanvi Kulkarni, Staff Writer
Saanvi is a 7th grader at Clague Middle School. This is her first year doing yearbook/newspaper. In her free time, she likes to read, write stories, do karate and play piano, as well as hanging out with her friends. Also, she spends way too much time wishing for a pet.

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