REVIEW: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

April 19, 2013 Uncategorized 2

GENRE: YA SF/Dystopian
Published: November 15th 2011 by Harper
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.

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What to say about this book that has not already been said… well, I’m creative, so I found something.  Juliette is dangerous, she can’t touch people because she kills them.  This scares the crap out of everyone, so they lock her away.  Pretty much in isolation, in some unknowable future where kids freaks don’t get rights.

Sounds like very other review so far, but hold on a minute.  Because maybe you’ve read my books, maybe you haven’t, but if you did you’d know I have  thing for numbers.  I use a few numbers continuously and I do it on purpose because I have this thing for numbers.

Mostly I have a thing for the number three, but because three squared is nine, I also dig nine a whole lot.  Most of the time I hate even numbers, but twelve is good because one and two add up to three, plus I was born on the twelfth day of the month.  After that I skip all the way up to twenty-seven.  I love twenty-seven because seven (which is not a favorite of mine) and two add up to nine.

Nine has weird divisibility rules and you can tell if something is divisible by nine by adding up all the digits.  If the number you get is divisible by nine, so is that number you’re looking at. And if it’s divisible by nine, it’s divisible by three.

So why the hell am I going on about numbers in a review of Shatter Me?

Because Juliette is divisible by three.

Juliette is a three if ever there was one.

This book is almost all style.  Normally that makes it literary fiction, but thank God, this is not the case with Shatter Me.  This is some straight YA SF/Dystopia ala X-Men.

Tahereh Mafi has perfectly captured the almost insane soul of a very disturbed girl. Oh, I hear the outcries of horror!  Juliette is not insane!

Oh. Yes. She is.  Believe me, I know it when I see it.  She’ll pull it out in the end, I’m sure, but she’s definitely not sane in the beginning of this book and while she has her moments of clarity from time to time, I think we can all agree, she’s pretty messed up. We don’t see her in Destroy Me, but she’s well on her way to a nice psychosis in Unravel Me, that’s for sure.

Juliette makes this whole book until Warner gives her his bed to sleep in, and then this guy just dominates.  He wipes the floor with Adam, a friend from Juliette’s past that is now her main love interest.

And it almost seems inconceivable that there could be TWO bigger than life characters in the same book, but Warner is definitely stealing the show.

It’s amazing, really.  My hat is off to Tahereh Mafi because not only is Shatter Me filled with a very unique style, but she was able to get many of us on Warner’s side before we knew of his vulnerabilities.

This is a fun story and I’m thoroughly enjoying it.  My only valid complaint is with the world building, it’s not great.  In fact, it’s lacking once Juliette is outside her cell.  But I don’t really care, the only thing I care about is Warner and Juliette.

My other less-valid complaint is that it’s traditionally published, so you know, that means you wait forever to get the next book and that sucks. But what can you do?

Five stars for Shatter Me.  Stop by tomorrow and I’ll think up something original to say about Destroy Me!  :)

About the author…

(I’m pretty sure this bio is badly out of date, but this is what’s on her GR profile.) 

Tahereh Mafi is a girl. She’s 24. She writes books and reads books and drinks way too much coffee. SHATTER ME is her first novel, and the first of a trilogy, coming from Harper/HarperCollins on November 15, 2011. Film rights have been optioned by 20th Century Fox.

Her work is represented by Jodi Reamer of Writers House, LLC.

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2 Responses to “REVIEW: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi”

  1. Angie F

    “…the only thing I care about is Warner and Juliette.”

    YES!!! I really liked this one, but OMG Destroy Me and Unravel Me…OMG…OMG…that is really all I can say. Chapter 62 of Unravel Me…holy crap.

    Angie @ Pinkindle Reads & Reviews

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