Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh MafiShatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Series: Shatter Me #1
Published by HarperCollins on October 2nd 2012
Genres: Dystopia, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 340
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
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one-star
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.

(Part of Review Backlog 2013)

Ah Shatter Me, you either hate it or you love it. I was already preparing myself and tried to keep an open mind but from the first page, I couldn’t take it seriously. Sorry folks, I’m not a fan *shrugs*

Juliette’s touch is fatal and the Reestablishment threw her in a cell after her parents sent her away. But now it seems the Reestablishment has a purpose for her and wants to use her touch as a weapon.

Juliette, put quite simply, was a Mary Sue to me. There was little to her character and dimension. Her flaw didn’t even seem like a flaw and she was constantly dragging herself down about how her touch was devastating but we saw little of it and only in two circumstances. It downplayed the effect of her touch and I really didn’t feel her power was really scary at all because of it.

We have her two love interests – Adam and Warner. Adam is someone from her past who I can only say is Gary Stu. There was no chemistry between them at all and the romance was eye-roll inducing. Then Warner who is a little bit more interesting but a bit crazy too because he’s in love with Juliette – a girl he barely knows and has only read about. I didn’t really understand and get why they both even liked Juliette.

Now I had a lot of issues with the purple prose, it got to a point where it was making my head hurt and I really didn’t enjoy it. I am not against it but the execution of it in Shatter Me just didn’t make sense. A lot of the sentences and phrases did not need to be even used, I didn’t see the purpose for their addition.

Raindrops are my only reminder that clouds have a heartbeat. That I have one, too.

I don’t get how raindrops mean that clouds have a heartbeat?? It doesn’t make sense.

His eyes are two buckets of rainwater: deep, fresh, clear. Hurt.

… Whaaaat.

Aside from the writing, the world building was nearly non-existent. We know little about the world, there are a few details about how the Reestablishment took control over the world. Disappointing, everything was mainly concentrated on Juliette, Adam and Warner.

I couldn’t take Shatter Me seriously and I do regret buying it. The purple prose and characters were unbearable to me. However I do own Unravel Me in my mistake to purchase this based on an assumption from the hype so I will be reading that although don’t expect me to change my mind.

Verdict:

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20 thoughts on “Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

    1. CharlotteCharlotte Post author

      The crossing out didn’t really bother me too much but the prose did so others may find it poetic. I’m quite surprised this is the first time you’ve read a negative review of this book! It’s either love or hate for this book. Hope you’ll enjoy it more!
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  1. Amber @ Books of Amber

    I’m chuckling. Or, rather, cackling. I really did not enjoy this book, and I don’t understand why. I wanted to love it because Judith does (or did), but ohmygod, it was bad. I agree that Juliette is a total Mary Sue/Bella Swan. I couldn’t stand her, although I did like her in the first couple of chapters. It was when nothing went anywhere that I started to side-eye her. The lack of worldbuilding got to me too.
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  2. Charlene @ Bookish Whimsy

    I wasn’t initially interested in this story (ugh another love triangle), but the hype over it made me curious. But now I’m back to not interested, so I think you saved me some time – thank you! :) It’s too bad you already bought the second book though! I wonder if having invested the time in the 2nd book you’ll feel the need to just know how the series end and read the last? :)
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    1. CharlotteCharlotte Post author

      You’re welcome ;D *bows* Maybe! But I’ll probably borrow the final one from the library, I am still unsure because I would rather read a book I know I would enjoy.

      Reply
  3. Annie

    I feel like there should be a running tally somewhere of the people who like Shatter Me and those who don’t. Is it weird that I like that this book is so divisive? I don’t know why I think it’s fun.

    I am sorry that you didn’t like it after you bought it (and the sequel!) That totally sucks. If you were in the US I’d buy it off you because I don’t have physical copies of it. And I fall into the camp of loved it. well, loved it until Ignite Me…
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  4. Ana @ Read Me Away

    So true, this book is either one of those “you hate it or love it” kinda books. I’ve seen both like and dislike for it from my blogger friends, but the ones whose tastes are more similar to mine have disliked it. ;)

    The writing really does seem to throw people. It seems to be either a style that people find so beautiful and poetic, or one that’s just plain confusing. Based on the sentences you posted, I would be confused too. This is one of those books that I *might* pick up, just to check out the love/not-love for it. But not a book I’ll pick up any time soon. :P Haha!

    So if raindrops are a cloud’s heartbeat, what the heck is happening during a storm?! O____O (Haha!)
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  5. Kayla @ The Thousand Lives

    Honestly, I didn’t LOVE Shatter Me or Unravel Me, but I had enough interest to read Ignite Me, which is completely different from the first two books. I would recommend pushing through Unravel Me and reading Ignite Me, because the character development is completely different in that one. Plus, the purple prose is more sporadic, used where it fits and not for every sentence. There are some really beautiful quotes from Ignite Me <3
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  6. Aimee @ Deadly Darlings

    (First off: Love the Chandler GIF!)

    I read this one a year (or two?) back and actually enjoyed it. The quotes you mentioned actually came off as poetic for me, but now that I’m reading them for the second time around, I’m realizing how much they don’t make sense, ha! Anyway, I tried picking up the sequel and gave up before I hit the middle. It was clear that if the author chose for a character to do something, she’d make it happen even if it’s totally against what we learned about them in previous books. I didn’t like all the characters’ sudden personality twists in the sequel, so I just gave up the trilogy altogether. I’m sorry you didn’t like this one, though. Lovely review!
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  7. Francoise

    It sucks you did’t have the same experience I did with it. I absolutely adore this series but I totally understand why most people don’t like it. I found her writing poetic but it is also very annoying with the crossing out and the weird metaphors. Juliette is also the queen of throwing pity-parties so I totally understand but I had the opposite opinion. Great honest opinion.
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  8. Jenny

    Great review! I had a big problem with the prose as well. First, I felt it was unique and I liked that. After a while though, I felt like they progressively became more far-fetched and nonsensical. I liked the premise, just not the execution.

    Jenny
    http://www.blotsandplots.com

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  9. Jord @ Miss Book Reviews

    Thaaaaank Youuuu!

    I too could not get into this one. I completely agree with everything you’ve said! The world building was non-existent! It was so hard to imagine her surroundings because I had no idea what they looked like! And the romance? So cliche and boring. The whole plot? Boring. The bigger plot that you don’t find out about until the end? X-Men rehash… I also kept forgetting how to spell her name when I was writing the review so I now refer to her as ‘her’ because I can’t be bothered to check how Juliet is spelt in this book (I totally spelt it wrong again…)

    However, I actually kind of enjoyed the second book. It was different and way more interesting which completely surprised me. I haven’t read book three yet though…

    Jord @ Miss Book Reviews
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