The Unsaid is the second novel by Aaron Blaylock. I had the pleasure of reading and reviewing his first book, The Land of Look Behind, and was excited to read this one too.
Blaylock was bold in the writing of this novel. I admired the integration of his LDS beliefs into the story, such as the presence of a premortal world, a Savior, Jesus Christ, spiritual promptings, and even teachings of missionaries. I think anyone who isn’t LDS who reads the book will be completely intrigued. As an LDS reader, of course I believe in a spiritual life before birth on Earth. However, never before had I imagined what that premortal life might be like – what Heaven looks like, what kind of jobs or responsibilities unborn spirits have, and what the method is for choosing who would be born next on Earth. All these answers, of course, are from the author’s imagination, but they are really interesting, and well thought out.
I found The Unsaid to be a really unique story. There are two main characters: Eric, a young man living on Earth as an IT help desk professional, and Maggie, a spirit who catalogs all of Eric’s thoughts. He is her “beholden.” Eric is a sarcastic person who is obsessed with Star Wars. He has been heart-broken for some time over the loss of a previous girlfriend, but finds hope when a new girl gets hired at his company. Maggie becomes emotionally involved in Eric’s feelings for, and behavior towards, this new girl, Lindsey. She breaks some rules, and her life completely changes.
The book is hilarious. This is a book where you literally get inside a person’s head, and Eric is a funny guy – not always appropriate or kind, but funny. Maggie is a really good soul, but also curious, and has her own little faults. There are many characters in the book (from both worlds) that add dimension to the story, either for good or for bad, for deep or for shallow. Though the book is funny, it is full of feelings of rejection, doubt, fear, dread, remorse, and desperation. Lindsey especially adds that dimension to the book, though she is also such a sweet, kind force in Eric’s life.
The ending of the novel was so sweet. I loved the connection Eric and Maggie continued to have into the future.
I felt the book was a little short – definitely some more story lines could have been explored, like Borador’s. I also wanted to know more about Eric and Lindsey’s future interactions leading up to the end of the book. I just wanted more. All in all, the book was really good, though! I recommend it.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
About the book:
Maggie’s job as a heavenly curator of unspoken thoughts is pretty straightforward—for the most part. When Eric, her beholden, shows interest in the new girl at work, Maggie can’t help ignoring the rules to understand the wonders of mortality and love. But meddling in mortal affairs has consequences that Maggie couldn’t have ever imagined.
About the author:
Author of “The Land of Look Behind.” Born and raised in Arizona, Aaron is proud to call the desert home. He came of age in the suburbs of Sacramento, California, and as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Jamaica, where he fell in love with the people and their culture, but he has always been drawn back to the Valley of the Sun. Aaron worked as a freelance sports reporter for The Arizona Republic for nearly 10 years, combining his love of writing and sports. When not working, writing, or serving at church, Aaron volunteers as a soccer and baseball coach for his children and enjoys chasing a small white ball around a golf course.