Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi | Book Review

Posted March 20, 2014 by Jana in Book Review, Young Adult Fiction / 11 Comments

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi | Book ReviewShatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Series: Shatter Me #1
Published by HarperTEEN on November 15, 2011
Genres: Dystopia, Romance, Science Fiction
Pages: 368
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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4 Stars

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.

I’m part of a really exciting book club with Karin and Kat, called The Transatlantic Bookshelf, and Shatter Me was our first read! I’ve had my eye on it for a long time, so it was nice to finally have an excuse to read it. Sadly, Karin did not finish it. She’s considering trying it again later, but did just not love it this first time around. Kat and I both enjoyed it, though. I figured I’d put my thoughts together here! As always, my main points are bolded. :)

1. I don’t really see the hype. I mean, I liked the book. I really did. But I guess when you hear every good thing possible about a series, almost anything would be disappointing. I guess the best way to put it is that I don’t see why Shatter Me stands above any other book out there. My mind was not blown like I had hoped.

2. Mafi’s writing style really irked me at first. There is a lot of repetition of words and thoughts, plus a lot of thoughts are crossed out (actually, strikeout would be the best term), with new thoughts added behind. It took me quite some time to get used to, but I did end up getting myself to a point where I could skim over them. I have to hand it to Mafi, though, she has a very unique writing style. It’s unique enough, though, that you might take a while to appreciate it like I did.

3. I love the idea of this story. I love that Juliette’s touch is fatal, but sexy Adam is immune. So to see how she is being able to finally touch someone… it was powerful. Not being able to hold a person’s hand, or to hug them? That’s hard. Humans need human contact. So when Juliette discovers she can have that, it was like she all of a sudden discovered how to see.

4. The romance was kind of a slow burn, but also kind of insta-lovey. And I’m not sure if I will be able to decide exactly which one it is. On the one hand, Juliette and Adam meet in a rather deceptive way. She thinks he is someone totally different than he ends up being. For a while she really hates him. But then she starts to recognize him for some reason, and becomes intrigued by his complete caring for her. On the other hand, once she realizes she can touch him, there was kind of a romantic explosion if you will. And I felt like feelings happened really fast. But then you learn things and discover maybe it’s not so insta-lovey. *shrug*

5. In any case, the romance was pretty swoony. Mafi knows how to write sultry scenes.

6. I hate Warner. He’s the guy trying to make Juliette a weapon for The Reestablishment, and he is slimy and creepy. Kind of serial killery. And I’m scared abotu what role he might have in future books.

7. I LOVE ADAM. Can I have him? He is just so sweet and loyal and courageous. And I will be reading the next book for Adam alone.

8. Too much metaphor? I think so. What do you think?

All in all, I enjoyed Shatter Me but do not really understand the hype. The writing style takes a while to get used to, but once I did I appreciated the glimpses it gave us into Juliette’s true thoughts. The idea of the story has me super intrigued, and I will be reading the next book because I have a crush on Adam and can’t wait for more of him.

4 Stars
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11 responses to “Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi | Book Review

  1. I’ve been thinking about reading this as well and going through your review kind of convinced me to pick it up soon enough… unique writing style is always a plus for me, I’m kind of intrigue to read it. and yes, the idea of the story! It’s kind of what’s pushing me to read it as well, the heroine’s inability to make human contact is really interesting.
    czai recently posted…Gin no Saji S2 08-09: Playing Dominoes with Money

  2. I haven’t read this book yet, but I’ve been so spoiled that I know everything that’s going to happen. I’ll be reading it this spring cause I still want to read it for myself. Based on what you said….I don’t know how you’re going to feel about the next book. Stike-outs? Too many metaphors? Gah! That messes with my OCD. I would hope in this book, the author’s writing style is just reflecting Juliette’s muddled thoughts and indecision.
    Monique recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books On My Spring 2014 TBR List

  3. I just want to say so much but I don’t want to ruin your reading experience. For me, Shatter Me was the best of the series. I feel the same about Warner and Adam. I also have so much more feelings that I don’t want to get into because I don’t know how far you’ve progressed into the series.
    Aly @ My Heart Hearts Books recently posted…Dear Killer (Review)

  4. Kel

    I think all the reviews I’ve seen on this series have been either love or hate. I like the whole “Rogue” can’t touch idea, but I’m not sure how I feel about there being one guy she can touch; and, more importantly, reviews of the sequels have kind of scared me off starting this series. I will be interested to see what you think of them. Thanks for the nice review!
    Kel recently posted…Cress by Marissa Meyer (3 stars)

  5. What I found very interesting was how my feelings changed towards characters as the series progressed. I’m curious to see what you think after reading the other two books. I do agree with you that I don’t understand all the hype. I really enjoyed the series but there are many series that I enjoyed just as equally.
    Ginny recently posted…Rooting for the bad guy

  6. Deyse

    Oh, boy, if the second book doesn’t change your opinions on certain things I’m praying for you on the third.