Release: November 15th, 2011
Pages: 346 (hardcover)
Source: Amazon Vine
Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days.A broken girl with a
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....read more at Goodreads.
Oh, my, gosh. I'm a fan of achingly beautiful and metaphorical writing, and Tahereh Mafi sure knows how to deliver. In her debut novel, Shatter Me, the words flow from one to the next. They start building up suspense and then tearing it down again. The action comes and goes, leading into one twist after another, constantly surprising the reader. While I at first thought this novel was mostly dystopian with a dash of paranormal, it becomes clear by the end that the paranormal aspects root deep into the story. There may be some predictability, but Shatter Me is one difficult book to close and set aside.
Highlights: The words wrap themselves around you from the first line and never let go. Each line evokes the senses, giving a fresh, exhilarating outlook on simple things like the crisp, cool air, or stolen kisses1. I was hooked from the beginning, curious and excited to see what came next for Juliette. But certain characters - Warner, Kenji, and James - make this book shine with their well-rounded and vibrant personalities.
Lowlights: The strikethroughs, while cool, do not make logical sense when you factor in the writing style and tense Mafi uses. Same with a few of the metaphors. There are some overly convenient parts of the story. The world building needs a lot of work, and I hope Mafi will tackle that in the sequel. And while I adored Adam, he needs a bit more development - as does his relationship with Juliette.
Note: A few (very) steamy kisses2 that can make a girl blush, and some violence. Perfectly fine for the intended age range of readers (14+)
1 Oh, the beautiful writing. So vivid and memorable.
2 *fans self*