Genre: YA Dystopian
Series: Shatter Me #2
Publication Date: February 5th 2013
Page Count: 461
Review Copy: Purchase
Reviewed by: Janice
Buy Link: AMAZON
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.
Do you know how you can tell you've found "the" book? When you read it once, and your socks are so completely rocked off, you simply must dive back into the pages and read it again. Or when you browse through your bookmarked sections and highlighted quotes, and you realize that you've dog-eared most of the novel, and just thinking or talking about certain scenes and chapters will a) render you incoherent, b) make your heart race, or c) cause you to break out into a smile so big and bright, the people around you will have to wear shades.
That was my experience reading Unravel Me. Even now, as I type this review, I am fighting the urge to pick up the book yet again and read (translation: devour) all my favorite parts, just so I can wallow in all the awesomeness.
When the book begins, Juliette and Adam are hiding out at Omega Point, a secret location that is home to the resistance, but it isn't quite the perfect sanctuary they'd hoped for. There's little time or opportunity for them to enjoy their newly-minted couple status, and their fellow rebels are anything but enthusiastic about having Juliette in their midst, making her feel like more of an outcast than ever. And to make matters worse, the increased Reestablishment presence in the area is putting everyone on edge, as troops led by none other than Big Bad Warner himself continue their relentless search for the fugitives. Tensions are high, and everyone is on edge.
That's the basic premise of Unravel Me, and it doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of everything this book contains. So much happens! SO. MUCH. Tahereh Mafi didn't just expand on the world she built in Shatter Me, she blew the lid off of it and turned a fantastic story into an epic one.
The character development was ah-mazing. No one was safe. From Juliette, to Adam, to Warner, everyone had major curve balls thrown their way. They were tested. They were tried. And each one of them had to decide if they were going to step up or get out of the game. I felt for them, and yet at the same time, I loved seeing them get shaken up, because it revealed so much about each of them.
Let's start with Juliette. There's no way around it, she's a hot, beautiful mess, and has been since we first met her in Shatter Me. I actually cheered when certain characters (*coughKENJIcough*) took her to task, giving her a much-needed dose of hard truth and reality. But at the same time, I get it. I understand her. Brought up the way she was, isolated and cut off from virtually everyone, it makes total sense that she would have a tough time adjusting not only to life at Omega Point, but also fitting in with the people around her. It's not so much that she doesn't want to be a team player, or that she's so caught up in her own drama, she can't see the forest for the trees. It's more a case of not knowing the right moves, because she's never had to make them before. Being a part of something, interacting with people, being loved - it's all new to her. But Juliette is so much more than she gives herself credit for. Does she make mistakes? Yes, absolutely, but she's learning, and every day she shoulders the burdens she is forced to carry a little better than she did the day before. That, to me, is what makes her such a compelling heroine. She's got so much heart, so much power and raw potential (and I'm not just talking about her fearsome abilities)....I can't wait to see where she ends up.
Adam, I had a tougher time with. I adored him in Shatter Me, but here, not so much. The way he reacted to certain challenges and tribulations just didn't sit well with me. I expected more from him, and felt like I got less. Either I'm seeing him clearly for the first time, or this wasn't his book to shine and he's going to come back in a big way in book three to totally wow me. Only time will tell. For now, I'm on the fence.
With Warner, I had the opposite reaction. He intrigued me in book one, and totally, completely won me over in his novella (Destroy Me). Yes, I am very much Team Warner, and being the diehard fangirl that I am, there is no way I can discuss him objectively. So if you want to take everything I'm about to say with a big, heaping grain of salt, go right ahead, but IMO, Warner made this book. Would it have been great without him? Yes, I'm quite sure it would have been. With him, though - with him, it became something truly phenomenal. He brings something to this series that no one else can or will. He's such a deliciously gray character. Not a villain, and not a classic, do-gooding hero either. He's somewhere in between, and which side of him you see depends on who you are and what the circumstances are. I learned so much more about him in this book, and I ate up every single word he and Juliette exchanged. The tension between them does wonderful, fluttery things to my insides. In my (biased) heart of hearts, I really do believe he understands her in a way no one else can or ever will. Does that mean he is going to get the girl at the end? I honestly don't know. I hope he does (oh, how I hope for that!!!) but at this point, I'm prepared for anything. What matters most to me is that Warner gets a happy ending, whatever that happy ending turns out to be. He's earned it.
Before I wrap this review up, I need to mention Chapter 62. Sweet mercy, Chapter 62. I've lost track of the number of times I've read it. Let's just say a lot, and multiply it by infinity. Seriously, BEST. CHAPTER. EVER.
Unravel Me did everything a sequel should. It continued to build the world the author created, it cranked up the drama and tension, it challenged the characters and had a ton of OMG-type moments, and most of all, it left me absolutely desperate to read more. I need Ignite Me (book 3) like I need my next breath. So hurry up, February 4th - get here faster! :)
5 Stars ★★★★★