Mark Reads ‘Untold’: Chapter 16

In the sixteenth chapter of Untold, Jared comes clean about how he feels toward Kami. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Untold.

Chapter Sixteen: A Preference for Breathing

He did it. Jared did it. HE DID THE THING, AND GOOD LORD, IT’S SO SATISFYING TO FINALLY READ IT. This needed to happen, Jared needed to be sincere when he was saying it, and he need to explain why he had treated Kami with such disdain and derision for the entirety of this book up to this point. Oh, there’s just so much here I love. SHALL WE?

Things are (unsurprisingly) quite uncomfortable in the opening pages of chapter sixteen. How could they not be? Kami was already struggling with how she felt about Jared, and seeing him with Holly in this context makes things a billion times more confusing, even though she really does want Holly and Jared to feel free to do what they want! So when Jared says that he has something to tell her, I thought it was pretty obvious that he was going to address what had just happened and maybe bring up what he’d said to Holly about Kami. Maybe. The reveal that he gives Kami – that he didn’t mean to say that she wasn’t special – was the start of an apology, but even then, I wasn’t sure he was going to follow through.

Oh, boy.

“I told myself it was best to make a clean break. I didn’t want to hang around and have you taking pity on me. I thought it would be best for you. And I was angry with you and I wanted to hurt you. I didn’t think I could hurt you, but I tried. I know it was terrible of me to feel that way, wanting to hurt you and wanting the absolute best for you, at any cost, all at the same time.”

It’s interesting to me that Jared centers so much of this experience around himself, but it’s not until he has an epiphany regarding how much he’s actually hurt Kami that he’s able to begin to snap himself out of it. His first reaction was to push Kami away from him in order to do what was best for her, in that misguided way of his, but notice how quickly he made it about hurting Kami to feel better about the decision. He says that he didn’t know if he could hurt Kami, but I’d say he’s demonstrated quite well that he absolutely can. Granted, he can’t know the inner workings of Kami’s brain. (ANYMORE. OH GOD WHY DID I TYPE THAT.) And I think he is so used to knowing everything about her that he completely misjudges her reactions. How was he to know that she would take his words to heart and worry about not being special?

I’m also glad that he admits that she does not belong to him because… well, his behavior has been possessive, and part of his acceptance of her decision involves him coming to terms with this concept. Plus:

She wanted to say she forgave him, but she couldn’t prioritize his feelings over hers, not when he was the one who had lashed out.

THIS IS SO IMPORTANT. The vast majority of the dramatic tension between these two comes from Jared’s behavior, and I’m so happy that Sarah Rees Brennan calls it like it is. Kami’s feelings are important. And through this, Brennan respects them!

The second half of this chapter also gives us a glimpse of a possible solution to Rob’s control over Sorry-in-the-Vale. Kami brilliantly figures out that the town can contact sorcerers who live outside Sorry-in-the-Vale, which she demonstrates by successfully calling HENRY THORNTON. Never in a million years did I expect him to ever come back for a RELEVANT PLOT POINT. But Kami thinks outside the box here, and holy shit, I need to stop this sentence because I just watched the first two episodes of Veronica Mars for Mark Watches on the same night I’m writing this review and HOLY SHIT I JUST HAD AN EPIPHANY. The Lynburn Legacy is basically Veronica Mars with magic, isn’t it? OH. OH MY GOD I FEEL LIKE A WHOLE WORLD WAS JUST REVEALED TO ME.

All right, I got that out of my system. (!!!!!) Anyway, how great is Kami here when she convinces Henry to do something to contact the few sorcerers left in town who might oppose Rob Lynburn? She uses humor and empathy to connect with Henry and compel him to act, and I think that’s a fair assessment of Kami’s general characterization, no? She tries to understand people, and then she tries to make them laugh. That’s Kami Glass in a nutshell.

Oh, right. This other thing:

Sharing a bench in the Water Rising, leaning into each other whispering and flirting, were Rusty and Amber Green. Rusty, and one of Rob Lynburn’s sorcerers.


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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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