Saturday, 12 July 2014

Review: Shatter Me

Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahera Mafi
Pages: 338

Juliette's touch is lethal. Consequently, she has been kept in an institution, in a solitary cell, for over 250 days. The novel starts off when she gets a cellmate.

As many current young adult novels, this one can too be classified as dystopian. The world in which Juliette lives has been taken over by the Reestablishment, who are not afraid of killing - many people have already died in a war.

Let's first talk about the story itself. To me, it felt rather original, but please keep in mind that I have not yet read much of this genre. What I also liked was that I felt like I knew what was going to happen all the time, but my predictions always turned out wrong. Over all, I thought the story was really good. However, I was a little iffy about the romance. I did not really buy it, and even though I liked Juliette's love interest (I know many readers don't), I felt it took up too much of the story - I wanted action! 

The brilliantness of this novel lies not in the story itself, but in the writing style. Tahera Mafi writes like a poet, yet the novel is written from a perspective of a 17 year old girl, and even in a sort of diary form. That is something that not many novelists are capable of. The crossing out of words allows the readers to explore an aspect of her without spending pages explaining she is confused. Mafi also cuts off sentences in the middle - enjambment - which has been looked at critically by many of her readers. I, however, really enjoyed this, and I would actually love to reread the novel, just to figure out exactly why she used that device, at those certain moments. 

The writing would thus really grant this novel five stars, but as I was not completely convinced by the story itself, I rated it four. I am definitely buying the second novel soon, and maybe even the novellas which are meant to be read in between the novels. 

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