Monday, 16 April 2012

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Publisher: HarperTeen
Released: 15th November 2011
Rating: 1/5

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:

Before I start, I want to say one thing: I preordered this. I have probably preordered about....5 books in my life. The last one was City of Fallen Angels. Before that it was Last Sacrifice. So you see, a preorder is a big deal for me. I expected a lot from this.

And it was probably one of the worst books I have ever read, ever.

The amount of purple prose in this book is truly, truly outstanding. I am amazed that someone could possibly write this way for so long. Now, I am a big fan of purple prose usually. I adore some beautiful, flowery language, but this was too far. It felt so false, so purposeful and it got my back up immediately. There was no need for there to be a similie/metaphor every other sentence.  Don't even get me started on all the crossings out. They made me want to rip out the pages and eat them. I hated them.  

Juliette was possibly the most pathetic main character I have ever come across. I mean yes, she had a rubbish childhood, and yes, she'd been locked in a room with no human contact for a year but did that really give her permission to be so whiny? She just whined and cried and stumbled her way through this entire book. Her treatment hadn't made her strong, it made her useless. She wasn't a fighter, she wasn't resilient she was ludicrous. Her only strength was not giving into Warner straight away, and that's about the only redeemable thing that I can find about her.

Adam was almost as bad. He had no personality at all, it didn't help that their 'romance' was all done off stage. It was just thrown at you, you were forced to accept that This Is How They Feel About Each Other. No proof, no build up, no nothing. Their gushy exchanges made me want to throw up. I actually found myself liking Warner in reaction because at least he was complex and interesting and layered, even if he was despicable.

Plot-wise, not much seemed to happen, and when it did it was all so convenient. There just happened to be something at this point to help them, that just happened to happen, this just happened to happen etc. It was a bunch of not very realistic coincidences strung together. 

I can see WHY so many people enjoyed it, I thought *I* would enjoy it but I just couldn't. 


  1. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! You didn't like it? I loved it! One of my most favourites of all time! And I thought that it was a lot better than CoFa (I'll have to search to see what your opinion of it was).

    Meh, to each their own (and at least this way I don't have to fight you for Adam) ;) . But I agree about the Warner thing, I think that he is super intriguing/ multi-layered/ complex- I really like him as well.

    Do you think that you will bother reading the rest of the books in the trilogy?

    1. Lol yeah CoFA wasn't amaaazing but I didn't know that when I preordered did I ;) I can totally understand WHY so many people love this, it just rubbed me up the wrong way :P and no I probs wont read the rest...

    2. "... but I didn't know that when I preordered did I"

      That is true... ;) Here's hoping CoLS is better!

      And no? :O! You are going to miss out on Juliette running around in a purple unitard/ onesie thing! ;)

  2. Oh no!!!! So sad that you didn't like this, it was one of my favourites last year :(

  3. Oh. Well..I've read mixed reviews on this one, so..that's okay! And yes, you preordered it which meant your expectations were high! You would've wanted to love this book. I know the feeling. Great honest review! I still haaven't read Shatter Me..before its release, I was SO excited. Like I'd do anything to get my hands on a copy. I joined tons of contests. But when the mixed reviews started trickling in..I stopped.

  4. Pity you didn't like it! I don't think I'll be giving this a go, I can't STAND whiny main characters! They just ruin the whole book! I was also recently reading a book where the two main characters were just completely in a romantic relationship that felt completely fake, random, and annoying so I know how you feel. An I also don't think I could bear all those crossing outs! Thanks for an honest review!

  5. YES! I knew we were friends for a reason! I just didn't get this one. The characters bugged me. The writing pissed me off and the end came out of nowhere! So annoying.

  6. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww Cait. I think you hated this book *rereads* Yup, you hated it. Which is a shame since we can't be friends anymore now, but it's cool, I'll still secretly stalk you in the night.

    I kid, I kid (about being friends, I never kid about stalking). I can totally understand why you didn't like it. I think it's one of those books that you either fall into the love or hate category with, especially with Tahereh's style of writing. Warner definitely intrigued me though, even if some of the things he made he do had me screaming at him *stabs*

    But anyway, sorry you didn't love it like you had so anticipated! :(

  7. Awww, that's too bad that it was such a big disappointment for you. I did end up enjoying it, but I can see why people dislike the writing so much. My personal issue stemmed from the ending which was WAY too X-Menish for me. I was fine with Juliette having Rogue-type powers, but the ending just sent it into being too similar. Anyway, thanks for the honest review and hopefully your next pre-order will be worthy of you ordering it in advance!

  8. I'm trying not to sob now, Cait. WHY ARE YOU MAKING ME CRY?! I am loaded with The Sads and Stuff. This is horrifying, shocking news. I've reread your review three times now, double checking to make sure my eyes haven't shriveled up and died after all the HTML I've been wading through over the weekend. But, alas, my eyes proved correct. HOW CAN YOU DO THIS TO ME?!

    I am thoroughly devastated. But, though I can't understand, I love that you're not afraid to outright say I HATE THIS FREAKING BOOK. Or I dislike it very strongly. And that you could back your shizz up with a WHY, and it wasn't as if you were dissing the story. I still <3 you, Cait, even though you hated one of the books that made my heart sing and soar last year. *sniffles*

  9. Wow, Cait. We agree on so much. Adam was the typical YA romantic interest who's like "I'll protect you no matter what" even though they know like 2 things about each other. Warner was 10,000 times more interesting than him. And I really didn't like Juliette--her transformation to "resiliency" was unbelievable. Great review.

    (PS - if you pre-ordered it, why did you wait to read it so long :P?)

    1. Haha I didn't, I just waited this long to post my review ;)

  10. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww that's such a shame! I really loved this book but I can understand why you and many other readers had trouble with it. It's a 50/50 book of loving or hating it. Kind of depends what you're into. Anyway great and honest review. Pity you didn't love it as much as I did . . .

  11. I'm really sorry that you didn't like this book! I don't pre-order books often too so I want to make sure that I will love the books I pre-order! I actually really liked Shatter Me! I thought the crossing lines thing were unique and cool. I do understand why you didn't like the book but I liked how honest your review was, Cait! <3

  12. Pre-order is a big deal for me too, so I totally know what you mean! I haven't read this one. I remember all the hype surrounding it but I read a preview and it didn't grab me, so I didn't buy it. Also, the crossing out of words irked me even after just a few pages, so it's probably not for me. I'm not a fan of flowery language either - never have been, so now it's really sounding like this one is not for me.

    Not to say that I may not check it out at some point in the future! ;)

  13. 1 out of 5?!?! ouch!
    I don't think this one is for me anyway but I definitely won't be picking it up now lol

  14. It's funny, reading negative reviews of this book, I FINALLY get how people who ADORED Twilight felt when I was bashing it (while clinging protectively to Jacob Black, mind you.) I just COULDN'T GET IT, why they loved it so much, and I didn't. It's trippy, seeing people who so vehemently dislike Shatter Me...yet I can understand it this time, I can see how some people would want to run, not walk, away from this one. The prose/language for me, was beautiful...yet at the same time, I can absolutely see how it would be too much. I'm sad you didn't like this one, but your reasons are totally valid! Hopefully you'll find something else you like better. :)

    Molli | Once Upon a Prologue

  15. LOL. I actually really liked this one, but your review is hilarious. I can see why you didn't like it (the prose) - I thought it was kinda cool, but if every book were written that way I would probably go crazy :P. I liked both Juliette and Adam though will admit Warner was the most interesting ;).

  16. I've been wanting to read this one for ages...Not read it, but loved your review. Not read any of this book at all-not sure if I really want to now. But others gave it five out of five... I'll pick it up if I see it.


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