-A.M. Aguilar

Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Do you ever find one of those books that’s so surprising you can’t stop reading once you start? 

“Shatter me” was definitely like that for me. I think I read 60% of the book in one sit. And I have confirmed that a book that grips you and after reading it you wish you’d read it more slowly, then that is, without doubt, a good book.

“Shatter Me” has a completely new writing style that I hadn’t found before and it definitely is perfect for the reader to get to know the character’s feelings, thoughts and emotions throughout the book. Plus the great writing makes it an easy read and it is perfect for understanding the thoughts in the characters’s mind. 

Tahereh Mafi used a very unique sense of writing where we are allowed to understand the character from a first point of view (I didn’t expect it to be so catching).

And Juliette is a very complex and unique character; her development is incredible and the way of expressing her troubles and anxiety touched my heart. Juliette surely starts out as a “poor me” character but quickly develops into her own and becomes the person that everyone wants on their team, with a super intriguing personality and also the biggest threat (she could be used as a major weapon).

“All I ever wanted was to reach out and touch another human being not just with my hands but with my heart.”

The setting of this book had me wanting to read more immediately. “Shatter me” is set in a dystopian world (anything else to say 😀 ) where everything is run by a group that has called themselves “The Reestablishment.”

They are an international movement that has staked claim on all of the inhabitable land left in the world. Their vision of the future is to re-create the world with one universal language and to forget everything else, burn all books except the ones they want, divide the country in sectors and arrange families according to this. And they will most definitely kill anyone who tries to stand in their way. No spoiler intended 😉

The story begins with Juliette telling us what her problem is: she hasn’t been out of her cell and hasn’t touched anyone in 264 days. Her only company is her journal and pen. Since the beginning of the book we get to empathize with the character’s feeling of confinement and loneliness and gives us a better understanding of what the outside world looks like and what she has been through. 

We also start to learn about the different new characters. Adam who surprises us all by proving his loyalty to Juliette was a great twist to the story and the bad guy Warner, who is the one everyone loves to hate, has a pretty weird obsession with Juliette that makes the book more intriguing.

The story follows the characters’ escapes and plotting of overthrowing The Reestablishment plus all the new information about Warner’s abilities of touching Juliette and wanting to use her as a weapon. We also meet Kenji (who is hands down the best character in the story and the one who brings the dynamic and laughter to us readers during the whole escape and life to or death situations) who poses as a soldier but really works for a secret undercover company.

The book finishes with this open ending where we are no longer sure if the characters are safe or if we’re only one step closer to having Juliette work as a weapon for someone else. 

“Laughter comes from living. I’ve never really been alive before.”

I love good twisted stories and my favorite part of any book, jo matter the genre, are definitely the characters. Not only the development of each but when the author creates a character with who we can identify with or find bit of ourselves in. A well written character and a solid growth for them through the story is a 10/10 for me. Also, the whole dystopian world and lethal powers Juliette has, had me aching to know more about her backstory and getting to see her reveal. 

“Shatter Me” will be rated 4 stars. I loved the plot and the twists, the authenticity of every character and the development of each. For sure the whole dystopian world and Reestablishment, the meaning to be a weapon to save or destroy the world, and the mysteries to uncover in Sector 45 made this book a complete bomb. It was kind of slow at the beggining but once we get to understand the character’s way of thinking and Tahereh’s writing, is amazing! 

I’m definitely reading the sequel because I haven’t had enough of Juliette’s story. 

Let me know if you have read this book and your thoughts about it! Have you read the sequel “Unravel Me”? 

“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.
he 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.”

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