Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Shatter Me - Tahereh Mafi

Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Publisher: Harper, 2011 (Paperback)
Length: 338 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Dystopian Fiction
Started: March 6, 2013
Finished: March 13, 2013

From the back cover:

No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal, but The Reestablishment has plans for her. Plans to use her as a weapon. But Juliette has plans of her own. After a lifetime without freedom, she's finally discovering a strength to fight back for the very first time-and to find a future with the one boy she thought she'd lost forever.

In this electrifying debut that Lauren Kate, New York Times bestselling author of Fallen, calls "addictive, intense, and oozing with romance," author Tahereh Mafi presents a riveting dystopian world, a thrilling superhero story, and an unforgettable heroine.

I'd heard some hype about these books (I think three so far) when I saw a listing for them with cover redesigns, so I decided to give the first one a try.

First off, this isn't a dystopian so much as a hormone-addled romance using the X-men superpower scenario as a backdrop. I feel for Juliette and what her life was like being ostracized and isolated without human touch, but having her fall for Adam so quickly without really feeling the validity of the relationship plus having the love interest and the villain just happen to be resistant to her soul-sucking death touch is just a little too convenient (talk about really pushing suspension of disbelief). The fact that Juliette has spent months and months in captivity without exercise or proper nutrition and hygiene practices and just happens to recover her immense beauty after a simple bath and can run for her life without collapsing. Plus she just happens to be able to break through concrete.

Every scene with Adam felt like this should have been a harlequin novel, no real substance, just wanting to bang each other in the midst of chaos around them. Heck, Juliette even somewhat gets the hots for Warner, the insane psychotic man who is very honest about his plan to use her as his personal torture device.

Interesting premise that could have had potential but was just executed poorly. The characters aren't anything special (Juliette makes me want to slap her silly), the writing isn't great and heavy on the cheesy metaphors, things come together way too easily, plus the obvious hormone fest is a bit overdone.

Thoughts on the cover:
Doesn't jive with the feel of the story at all. Warner does force Juliette to dress up like that a few times, but this just makes me think cover designers took the easy way out and just slapped on a girl in a pretty dress with sparkles on it cause, "that's what girls will buy" (*rolls eyes*)

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