Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Book Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1) 
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: November 15th 2011
Genre: Dystopian Paranormal(ish) Romance
Source: Audiobook from Library
Challenge(s): Dystopia

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.

This book has won itself the "Biggest Disappointment of 2013" award. I've been looking forward to Shatter Me since long before its release, only to finally find that it is the complete opposite of what I was expecting.

This book has found itself shelved in the dystopian section, when in reality it's much more of a paranormal romance with an only somewhat dystopian backdrop which has little or nothing to do with the actual plot. If you enjoy that kind of thing then great, but if you happen to loathe paranormal romance with a strong passion, then you'd better watch out!

I just plain didn't like Juliette. The description leads you to believe that Juliette will be this tough chick, and then we're greeted with a weak and whiny heroine. For someone with a lethal touch, that's kind of pathetic. I don't think I would've minded that too much in the beginning if there'd been any character development throughout the book, but by the end she hadn't changed much at all.

And now to address the love triangle...

How exactly is there a love triangle here? Warner is not a love interest! He is a horrible, evil man! Sure, he's dark and mysterious, but so is Darth Vader, and you don't see anyone swooning over him! For someone to find Warner as anything but pure evil is astonishing to me. Honestly I was extremely uncomfortable and somewhat disturbed by the sexual tension that was abundantly present.

I didn't hate Adam quite as much, but he doesn't have a whole lot going for him. He was a pretty boring character, and what I remember more than anything else is how irresponsible he was, especially in regards to his brother. In fact, the only character I really liked was his brother (whose name I am blanking on!)

The writing started out really lovely, but far too soon I got sick of the endless metaphors and repetition, which this entire book seems to be made up of. It made sense in the beginning, when Juliette is presented as a lunatic prisoner who has some mental issues, but by the end those seem to have disappeared, while the metaphors and repetition have not. And as the story progressed, the metaphors were making less and less sense.

The plot itself was mildly interesting, though somewhat predictable and not all that original. Really, it's the only reason I stayed with it through the end, because I was desperately hoping that it would redeem itself in the end and make enduring the dull characters and senseless writing worthwhile. Unfortunately I don't think it was enough to do so, and so I can confidently say I will not be continuing this series.

1 comment:

  1. I think this is the first negative review I've read about this book. It's always interesting to see someone who dislikes it. It makes sure that I don't have ridiculous high expectations. I'm not sure about the love-interest, but I'm still willing to give it a shot. Thanks for the honesty!



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