Sunday, November 20, 2011

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me
Good Reads 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.

In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a world as riveting as The Hunger Games and a superhero story as thrilling as The X-Men. Full of pulse-pounding romance, intoxicating villainy, and high-stakes choices, Shatter Me is a fresh and original dystopian novel—with a paranormal twist—that will leave readers anxiously awaiting its sequel.

My Thoughts

Shatter Me is another case of me liking a book instead of loving it. In it is a boy with an aversion to wearing shirts. In it too is a girl whose touch could kill. I was shaking my head at how very much like Rogue (X-Men) she was. I was also taken surprise that by the end of it, how oddly similarly dressed they were~ serves me right for skipping the synopsis which does proclaim the story as “a riveting dystopian world, a thrilling superhero story and an unforgettable heroine.”

It’s not all it’s been hyped up to be. I see it as a part of another trend, of superheroes and secret societies instead of vamps and weres (Tempest and Hunting Lila being two of the more recent similarly themed books I’ve read.) This story just takes it up a notch a by mixing in some dystopian. And this is where my problems begin, the world has problems I know, but her recollections of what had come to pass came across as not as smooth as I would have liked it (I was reminded of what I felt when reading Water Wars. That there’s a message about being good to the earth etc.) I have no problem with the message; I just don’t need it shoved down my throat.

Thankfully, it was a feeling that feeling did not last that long. Because there were other concerns that crept up along the way (like roaches). The baddy in this one just another one of them: Oh, Warner! Is he misunderstood? Is he only after someone who could understand him? Or is he plainly psychotic? The token bad guy in this one is bat shit crazy. But I did find myself reading on hoping to see something more in him.

So, what’s there to like apart from aforesaid boy with the aversion to shirts? Wait, let me focus on him. He is good. I’d already guessed who he was the moment he stepped into the story. Should I be satisfied with this book because the love interest is good and brave and hot? Well, he didn’t take anything away from the story. Only, if I were completely honest… he didn’t add anything new either, save the sweet big brother aspect.

Then there’s also the heroine, *big exhale* I’ve nothing too bad or good to say about her. She’s interesting. She was a sad lonely girl at first, but quickly became too attached to Adam. *shakes head* Where had all her mistrust gone, I wondered? The biggest thing that sticks out about her for me is how much she lived in her head. Her thoughts could go to either extreme of profound or overly indulgent and purple. For instance, take  

“The world is flat… I know because I was tossed right off the edge and I’ve been trying to hold on for 17 years. I’ve been trying to climb back up for 17 years but it’s nearly impossible to beat gravity when no one is willing to give you a hand. When no one wants to risk touching you.” 

You be the judge.


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