BOOK RATING: 9/10
Hello everyone! Today we are discussing the first book in a new series by Tahereh Mafi called Shatter Me. I really enjoyed this book! I’ve been looking for a series that I can really get into because I’ve been without one for a bit and it’s a sad, sad time when I don’t have a series to be obsessed with. I’m not sure if this one will be it but I really like the characters, and I like the story so we’ll see. It’s not what I thought it would be, it’s a quite typical dystopian novel. I thought it was going to be, well, not that but it’s still good. Juliette has been living in solitary confinement for 264 days in a psychiatric ward. She’s been deemed a danger to society and for good reason: her touch causes death within moments. Meanwhile, outside the world as we know it is crumbing. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, the weather is erratic and without season and whispers of war are everywhere. The Reestablishment has turned the world into a huge war- state where the military rules and people are subject to its whims and disobedience mans a bullet in your head. It’s at this point that young a military leader, Warner, takes an interest in Juliette and the power she possess. She would be the perfect weapon, but Juliette wants nothing to do with it. I could not stop reading this book! I finished it in one night. The writing style is different but I really liked it, it just takes a few pages to get used to. Go read this book if you haven’t already! Spoilers past this point, as usual!
I really like the way this book is written like a journal. And I get that all the cross outs might bug some people but I don’t mind it at all. Some of the repetitiveness gets a touch annoying but over all I loved the writing!
Warner. He’s this power hunger, sadist, murdering little bitch with mommy issues. Safe to say I loathe him. From things I’ve read and comments I’ve seen on YouTube about this book, people keep saying they are either “team Adam” or “team Warner”. Warner is not a team. Warner is he bad guy, people! Think about what you are saying! As far as I care, Warner can burn in hell. My main reason for this? What he did with Juliette and the toddler. I love children so to me, internationally hurting a baby is completely unforgivable. There is no excuse. I don’t give a shit how much he “loves” Juliette, I don’t give a shit about what he was trying to accomplish and whether it’s for the greater good of humanity, he put a baby in a situation that results in the baby being either hurt or killed. He was hoping Juliette would kill this baby. If I was in Juliette’s situation there would have been zero hesitation, no thinking through other options, my shirt would have been off and wrapped around the child so I could pick it up and hold it away from my skin. Hell, if all I had was a towel wrapped around myself in that situation, I would be naked in front of all those evil people and not give an honest fuck as long as I could keep that baby safe. I’m not mad at Juliette for hesitating; she did her best and the kid survived (unless Warner kill him after, I wouldn’t be shocked) and Juliette broke through that wall and I was really confused at how she did that but I wanted to kill Warner with her. She’s really weak and fragile then suddenly she’s strong and can break through concrete walls. What? Anyway, back to the point, no matter what Warner does now, I and will always hate him.
Birds don’t fly. That has to be the strangest thing in this book. You touch people and they die? Ok. I can work with that, but birds not flying? At the beginning Juliette is thinking about birds and how they could possibly accomplish what human engineering does and how that just seem so impossible to her. It was so backwards and so bizarre. And does anyone else want to know what colour these clouds are? They keep saying that they are the wrong colour, but what colour are they? “Wrong colour” is so ambiguous! Are they blue? Pink? Grey? What is going on with this? At the end Castle is talking about how The Reestablishment is making the weather crazy and poisoning the animals. I’m so confused! Someone is lying but I’m not sure who!
Adam and Juliette’s love. I really loved reading about this but after I finished the book and actually thought about it I realized that they really don’t know each other. It’s like a Katniss and Peeta thing where they’ve know each other since they were kids but never talked. And for Juliette it makes totally sense for her to fall so easily in love with Adam, she’s never had human contact before and he’s the only person who is nice to her so I completely get where she’s coming from. Adam I’m a bit more hesitant about. He really doesn’t know her yet, I think he really likes her and loves the idea of being with her but I foresee them having issues. But like I said I loved, loved reading about their relationship and their past. I shouldn’t have analyzed it! Oh! At the end when Juliette is making out with Warner trying to steal the gun and she’s like “Oh there was a spark I didn’t expect to feel!” WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! I don’t mean that literally, it’s obvious what she was doing, what I mean is: Yes, touching is new for you! But this man is evil! Think about what he has done! You have nothing with him!
What bugged me about Juliette was that she would go on these long rambles about starving and then Warner would offer her food and she would turn it down. What? Why? It was so unrealistic and I get that she was trying to make a stand about the unfairness of people not being able to eat, but darling, you not eating doesn’t give them food. It just wastes the food so you refusing to eat the food that others would kill for is just so…I can’t think of the right word. I want to say disrespectful but that’s not right. It’s like spitting in their face. You have food that you can eat and they would do anything for that food but you just refuse to eat it. Also if you were starving you are not going to be thinking about this “proving a point/hunger strike” thing. It’s very unrealistic and very annoying and it happens over and over! And she says that she’s “used to the hunger” and I just wanted to slap her. Because then she goes back to whining about being starving! There’s a lot that bugged me about Juliette now that I think about it. She’s just so weak and useless and over-dramatic! Another thing that bugged me is her saying she doesn’t know what colour her eyes are. You know what colour your eyes are. Don’t be so dramatic. I’m not sure why that bothered me, but it did. Another thing that bothered me though it probably shouldn’t have was that Juliette was described as being so perfect and beautiful even thought she’s been malnourished and living in a prison cell for three years. Someone tell me how that all worked out please.
James, I just love his character. Most attractive quality in a guy, fictional or not, is having them be good with kids. So Adam having a little brother is just so sweet. The characters were really the best part of this book. I’m going to have to say my favourite character was Adam because he’s so loyal and a sweetheart. He was such an ass when we first met him but it was all an act and he’s just so good! So good! And I love how he is with his little brother! James I just want to hug that kid when he came into Adam’s room after he had nightmares. He’s so chatty and just adorable but so tough and he’s been through so much. Kenji, when he came in I didn’t trust him. I didn’t think he worked for Warner but something was clearly going on. He was up to something! But he’s like the “funny” character I guess. Or he’s supposed to be. But he’s not really. I mean he has his moments but he’s not that really good, witty character that this novel really needed. Too much serious! Need a bit of comic relief thrown in there and Kenji, love him, but he didn’t cut it!
But the fact that Kenji is in this resistance thing and that he’s a spy just makes so much sense now that I look back on it. I should have seen that coming but I just didn’t expect this book to take that turn for whatever reason. I thought it would be less organized and Juliette and Adam splitting up and running. There was absolutely no basis for these theories. They just showed up in my mind. Partly because her name is Juliette I think. Totally irrelevant! I like how it turned out. It’s very x-men-ish and super-hero and I’m so excited for the next book! I think it’s going to be kick-ass with all these super-human people warriors! And I like how there are more people like her! I was really confused at the beginning because it seemed impossible that she was the only one! I’m think there was a nuclear war or something? I SWEAR IF THIS TURNS OUT LIKE THE CHRYSALIDS I WILL MURDER SOMEONE! Sorry, I am still very angry about that book even though I read it 3 years ago. A lot of pent up frustration around it. I cannot wait to read Unravel Me, this series is going places and I love where it’s going!
Last thing, how can Warner and Adam touch her? Like James said it seems awful convenient that this girl you are in love with can touch you but not anyone else. And then she can touch Warner to? What? That is just too convenient. Some solid explanation as to what is happening would be lovely. Because what are the odds that Adam and Warner are both super-human and have the same super human ability? We haven’t seen a super-human ability show up twice yet. The closest we got were the medical twins and even their powers weren’t the same. And Warner and Adam aren’t related. OH! What if Warner and Adam are related? Plot thickens! That could be a thing! Still, it’s just too convenient that these two boys who love her can touch her. There has to be another explanation. What I thought was maybe you have to love her to touch her but that fell apart because then by that logic she should be able to hurt complete strangers who know nothing about her because they have no feeling toward her. And her parents should have been able to touch her because in theory they loved her before they discovered she was a “monster”. Maybe it’s a sub-conscious self-defence thing? But then she should be able to hurt Warner! I don’t know! I have no clue!
Those are my thoughts on the book! What did you guys think of it? I can’t wait to read the next one! So many questions to be answered!