Review: Unseen Messages by Pepper Winters

★★★★★ 5 stars!!!

I just had to put those exclamation points in there because this book really hit me like a ton of bricks!

It's not unusual for me to be hungover on a really good book and not be in the mood for anything else for the next two days or more. This is the first time though when, literally, the moment I reached the very last page in my kindle (which I still repeatedly tapped, by the way, hoping for some kind of miracle and a couple more Epilogue pages would suddenly appear), I just knew I wouldn't be reading anything else for at least a week. I was lying on the sofa because my heart was already weak at this point (haha!). My right hand holding my kindle was the only part of my body that showed life, basically. So when I was done, my right arm just flopped right down and became dead like the rest of me.

I'm not exactly painting an attractive picture here, I'm sorry! In all seriousness, Unseen Messages just blew me away. I grew to care very much about the main characters and how they will be at the end of the story.

The synopsis tells us much of what this is mainly is about: our two main characters, Estelle and Galloway, survive a crash and are stranded on an island.

"They started as strangers. They grew to be friends. They fought the desire to be lovers." 

What the synopsis doesn't say, and what you guys should find out for yourselves, is how the event came about, who were involved, and most importantly (for me at least), how long they were there in that island.

I thought at first this would be something like Blue Lagoon where the characters would eventually adapt very well with the environment, that they'd build a fantastic cottage with slides, and that food would be abundant, that they will be healthy, etc... Unseen Messages does not ignore the realities of living with literally none of the most basic luxuries--not even a starter kit for boy scouts. Food, clean water, a proper ax to cut wood with, matches, medicine--my gosh, medicine. You'll have higher appreciation for penicillin and antibiotics after reading this book.

Estelle and Galloway had to learn how to survive without these very important things on hand.Sure, they'd get some coconuts and fish... but in reality they aren't getting all the essential nutrients the body needs to continue living. I love that Pepper Winters pointed that out in the narrative.

All those emotional, physical and mental difficulties aside... I love that the very best of humanity also took center stage in this book. =) The characters didn't go Lord of the Flies, thank God. They sought strength from one another, and in the process they really did become a family. The best parts are the happy moments shared by the characters, because in a situation like theirs, those moments are truly precious. They would have a really good few days, and then one instance of bad could overshadow that completely. Say, one day someone would get wounded. Without meds on hand, that could escalate from minor to deadly. So, as the reader I also cherished those happy moments because at any given time, it could be taken away.

Towards the end of the book, I became very much in sync with what the characters were feeling and thinking. In spite of the heartbreak and trauma, you do reach a point where you can choose to remember the happy times instead of dwelling over the bad.

I highly, highly recommend this book! This is by far the most memorable read of 2016 for me. It constantly slips through my mind even weeks after reading it. There would be moments when I'd suddenly think of this character and wonder (as though they were real people, lol), "How are they doing now?" It's crazy! And I adore Pepper Winters for writing something that makes me think that way about fictional characters.

To sum things up, Unseen Messages is hands-down one of the best I've read. =) The first chapters leading up to the crash had me holding my breath. It was nerve-wracking, I had goosebumps on my arms! I started reading while in line at my voting precinct (yeah, during the Philippine general elections! The analogy of a crash and the national election was not lost on me!), and I was gasping and clutching my kindle tightly, and I just gabbed at my sister who was sitting beside me. I just had to talk about what I was reading at that point! Overall, this book gave me a very fulfilling reading experience. Those hours were definitely worth it.

Read this, read this, read this!

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My sincerest thanks to Ms. Pepper Winters for the chance to read and review this beautiful book!



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