Title: Shatter Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult
My Rating: 5/5 stars
“I spent my life folded between the pages of books. In the absence of human relationships I formed bonds with paper characters.”
Shatter Me is the first book in the Juliette Chronicles or the Shatter Me series. Juliette has not touched another person for 264 days. The last time she did, she accidentally killed a boy. The Reestablishment locked her up, thinking it would prevent her from murdering others. But the world has other problems other than solving Juliette’s mystery. Disease is killing off the population, food is hard to get, birds don’t fly anymore and clouds are the wrong colour. Then Adam is thrown into a cell with her. They are taken out of the cell by Warner, Sector 45’s notorious leader, and Warner plans to use Juliette as a weapon. Juliette has to make a choice, be a weapon or be a warrior.
I really enjoyed reading this book, though there are many out there who didn’t. The writing was beautiful and poetic, the world building was vivid and the characters were genuine and lovable.
Juliette is the main protagonist in Shatter Me and slowly develops into a girl who fights back. She is quiet and does not trust anyone at the beginning of the novel, but she ends up escaping the room that Warner locked her in. As the story progresses, you can see that she contains strong powers but her kindness and humanity does not allow her to use them. I don’t know what to feel about Adam. I think the romantic relationship between Adam and Juliette escalated too fast. He is a warm and caring person but I think he is a tad too soft. Warner is the perfect villain for this story. He is feared by all and uses the fear to control his soldiers. He is cold but you could see Warner softening up to Juliette. I hated him when he made Juliette touch the child on purpose but felt sympathy for him when Juliette shot him, only to escape with Adam.
I would have loved to know more about Juliette’s past. The snippets depicted in the novel made me hungry to know more about Juliette. I would also have liked to know more about the world setting, maybe how the world came to be as it is in the moment, how the Reestablishment came to power and what they had done in the past. I thought the romance was cute but maybe moved too quick, as Adam and Juliette had only known each other for a few months.
Aside from the negatives, I thought the way Tahereh Mafi wrote the book was amazing. She had me hooked from beginning to end. The ending left me wanting more. The way the characters were portrayed made me fall in love with them, even the cruel Warner.
After reading this book, I immediately went and bought the second and third book because I wanted more. Tahereh Mafi has made it up to my top 10 favourite authors. Overall, this book was intriguing and had me hooked. I hope the books get better because I love Tahereh Mafi’s writing style.