[Review #52] Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Book cover of Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi - Book Review Title: Shatter Me
Series: Shatter Me
Book one
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Published: 15th November, 2011
Publisher: HarperCollins
Genre: Paranormal Romance in a Dystopian setting
Young Adult
Rating: 
[Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository | Whitcoulls NZ]

Summary
Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares.

The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war– and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior

Review

Well, I decided to read this book after reading a few of the raving reviews. All I have to say is: What does everyone else see that I do not? Or rather, how does no one else see what I see?

The content:
This book held my interest in waves. I found the beginning to be dull and it didn’t hold my interest very well, I realised I kept checking to see how much more of the book I had to go and I nearly DNF’ed it. But then suddenly something unexpected and exciting happened and I found I buried myself in it instead. That burst of interest held for a while. But it slowly died down and I started wondering how much longer till I reached the end again. Then BAM! Something would happen that would make me power through the next fifty pages. Therefore, it held my interest in waves. And when it held my interest  it really held my interest. But when it didn’t I could barely focus on the text.

The way this book was written was unique, I haven’t seen this writing style before, I thought it was pretty cool to begin with. I wasn’t blown away by it though because I had expected it after reading a few comments about it, so I’m not as enthusiastic as those people. At the beginning I liked the way  that the lines were crossed out and in the middle of sentences they were randomly moved to the next line with no punctuation and no sense. It caught my attention. It made me think Juliette really was insane. But then as I kept reading, when there were so many lines crossed out it started to annoy me, because I felt like I was reading a lot of the things that didn’t happen or weren’t said. The things that would have been more interesting than what was really said. These were in the parts of the book that I was bored stiff in so this is probably why I was getting more annoyed as I read on.

Juliette and Adam as characters weren’t that memorable for me. Or maybe the were over-shadowed by Warren? Warren was very memorable. He’s the ‘villain’ in this story, he does nasty things but the thing is he believes he’s doing right. He believes this 100% so it suddenly doesn’t make me think he’s all that horrible because he has validated reasons. Then, he does something that makes me think ‘You really didn’t need to do that.’ and I’m back on the I-don’t-like-Warren bandwagon. Ohhh but wait, I suddenly find I’m sympathising with him? I understand why? And I’m back off the wagon. But then he does something that makes me hate him and I’m at the level where I can’t stand him. I jump on the I-can’t-stand-Warren bandwagon instead. And I’m determined to stay on this one.

That characterization right there is the reason I liked Warren the best in this story. I couldn’t make up my mind about him, I was all over the place. I kept getting surprised and half the time found myself rooting for him. It was great because you really don’t see that a lot. Author’s can rarely make you feel like that with characters. Mafi did a great job on this.

As for Juliette she annoyed me to no-end because she was vulnerable yet she kept saying no and refused to do what was wanted of her, but then she was still the damsel in distress? She has this weird power where whenever she touches someone (Skin contact) they are put through terrible agony and could die. Yet she has high morals and won’t use this awesome (Yet horrible) power to get herself free. Yeah, I get that she was locked up and this power has traumatized her. But I really thought she wasn’t going to be the damsel in distress type. She really was. It was predictable. I was hoping for a lot more butt kicking… The summary sure makes it sound like there should be a lot more butt kicking.

Adam just wasn’t very memorable at all. The only thing I can remember is the forced romance. The romance feels forced because there is hardly any build up, they’ve known each other since before Juliette was put away but I wasn’t convinced there were any real feelings of romance there. There were some hot and heavy scenes which I think were written well near the end, but at the same time I wasn’t swayed, it felt more like hormones than attraction.

The romance tried to take too much of the stage in this story and I really don’t think that should have been the point. That someone could love strange Juliette with this deadly power. If it had taken more of a back seat and had slowly developed then this story might have been a lot more interesting with a different focus. 

The writing style is really the only awesome quality to this book.

The end:
The ending of the book felt like it came out of nowhere. I mean the very ending. There’s nothing in the rest of the book that indicates anything about the ending. So I was like ‘What on earth is going on?!’. Then I thought it was pretty cool and my interest sky rocketed.

The ending is the only reason I want to pick up the next book, it says that it has the potential to hold my interest a lot more than this book did. Although, the ending made me think of a certain comic book franchise/cartoon/movie, and I did find I couldn’t keep thinking it felt like it was almost identical in the idea.

Overall, I had hoped this book would be one of those books that surprised me at how good it was, because it’s getting a rating of five everywhere. But instead it surprised me that it is getting a rating of five everywhere… Personally I don’t understand. This book is different, the writing style is awesomely different (Unless you get bored throughout the book like I did), and it is exciting and very interesting at the end. But everything else just didn’t come up to par for me.

Shatter Me is a uniquely written book that ends with such a high that it makes you feel like you need to read the next book.

Unfortunately I was mostly disappointed with this book alone but I will be picking up the next one in the series with the mind set it will be more exciting and there will be more ass kicking. It definitely has that potential.

Miss J

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4 thoughts on “[Review #52] Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

    • The idea as a whole seemed very cool, I just wish it had focused on that rather than Adam and Juliette.

      I am pretty hopeful for the next book though.

  1. That cover is so stunning. Sad that it wasn’t good. The writing style sounds interesting, but I somehow doubt that I would like that much. It would feel like when I read Liar by Justine Larbalestier. The whole novel was a contradiction. If the story had been interesting, it would’ve been really awesome, but it wasn’t. It’s one of the only two books I have rated with one star. I’m still tempted to read Shatter Me, but it’s getting dropped down on my TBR pile now.

    • Isn’t it just? I love this line of covers! Too bad I didn’t really like this book.

      Ohh I haven’t heard of that book.

      I am seriously one of the only people that did not like this book! So there is a good chance you could like it, just perhaps lower your expectations just in case haha. I have to say that the ending surprised me so much and it opened up so many more possibilities that it was worth the read I feel. It was worth me rolling my eyes and groaning at how bored I was in the parts that I was bored… I’m definitely going to pick up the next book, but only because of the very ending of this book.

      Isn’t it interesting how the ending of a book can completely change your mind about continuing the series?

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