Sunday, February 10, 2013

Book Review: Unravel Me






it's almost

time for war.

Juliette has escaped to Omega Point. It is a place for people like her—people with gifts—and it is also the headquarters of the rebel resistance.

She's finally free from The Reestablishment, free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch.

Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible.

In this exhilarating sequel to Shatter Me
, Juliette has to make life-changing decisions between what she wants and what she thinks is right. Decisions that might involve choosing between her heart—and Adam's life. Quoted from Goodreads


So do you want the good news or the bad news first?

I'm going to start with the good, so if you're a bad-news-first sort of person, you can skip down a couple of paragraphs, then jump up to the beginning.  So, good news:  Tahereh Mafi's writing. I thoroughly enjoyed the way she has of putting words together.  Sometimes her images are a little far fetched, but they are vivid and unique and help transport you to Juliette's world.  Second, I love the numbers.  It was more pronounced in the first book, but her habit of counting seconds, fingers, whatever, gives helps build Juliette's unique voice--and again, it helps with the imagery.  Then we have all the crossed out sentences/lines/words.  I love that. It's such a fun, distinctive way of writing and viewing Juliette's thoughts, and the thoughts she doesn't want to have.

Second: Kenji.  I am not team Kenji (at least if you view teams like I do, which means that's who you want the main character to get with), but I absolutely adored him in this book.  In the first one he was the slightly obnoxious, comic relief.  In this one,he  steps up to become the voice of reason.  He's kind of the person I was hoping Castle would become.  He's the one who calls Juliette on her crap, forces her out of herself, and isn't attracted to her at all--thus avoiding all the angst. 

Warner.  Yes, he was the creeper, the bad guy that somehow some readers decide to fall in love with in the first book.  In this second book, his character is expanded.  We get tortured-soul Warner, with a lot more backstory and insight into why he is the way he is.  I really liked what they did with his character.  I'm still up in the air whether I believe he's an actual contender for love-triangle-winner, because he is very, very messed up, but at least we understand what horrible things went into making him that way, and he has become much more interesting.

Supreme Commander Anderson.  Talk about an excellent bad guy.  Yes, he is a bit one dimensional  which is disappointing since so many other characters are much more fleshed out, but he is absolutely a delight to hate.  Plus, I'm hoping we get a bit more about him in the next book. He kind of plays the Emperor to Warner's Darth Vader. The question is can Warner really be redeemed, and will Anderson ever be anything more than evil incarnate?

The bad.  So at the end of Shatter Me, we see Juliette in a new situation where she is accepted and relatively safe, no longer abused and free.  I was really excited to see what would happen, but for most of the book Juliette is broken.  Kind of like Katness in Mockingjay,  Juliette has all sorts of problems that brings the book down.  I understand her situation would make it difficult to make friends, and then there's her heartbreak with Adam, the only boy who's ever really been her friend, but still . . . she spends so much of the book wallowing or hating herself or feeling conflicted about Warner I got a little exhausted.

The good news in all of this is that in the end Juliette decides to finally take control of her life, hopefully for real this time.  She has the potential to be such a strong character, that I can't wait for her actually come into her own and be the person everyone believes she can be.

Then there's Adam.  He doesn't go in the bad category, but he's not quite in the good either.  The problem is so much of this book focused on Warner, all Adam really does is suffer. It makes it hard to remember how much I loved him in the first book, and while a few startling revelations keep him interesting, his relationship with Juliette isn't really developed like I'd hoped.

I did quite enjoy this book.  Yes, I have a few hang-ups with it, mostly involving Juliette and some of the decisions she chooses to make, but it's still a fun series.  I award this book a lovely 3.5 stars, and can't wait for the third book to come out. 

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