Book Review: Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me” by Tahereh Mafi is the first installment of one of my all-time favorite book series. Of course, it’s a dystopia. I really really love dystopias. I also love the fact that Mafi’s series contains both novels and short series, and from different characters’ perspectives. It allows the readers to really immerse themselves in her universe, and get to know multiple characters on a personal level (which is almost impossible in exclusively first-person narrative books).

Here is a quick review of the first book of the series, Shatter Me.

Shatter Me By Tahereh Mafi

Overall rating : ♥♥♥♥  4/5

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi - Book review

The story:

Shatter Me is set in the future, on a derelict planet Earth where a hostile movement called the Reestablishment has taken over. Birds have stopped flying, plants are dying and the human race has been divided into 3,333 sectors, controlled by ruthless leaders who are monopolizing the scarce resources that are left.

Amongst these humans, a rare few have been so affected by the Earth’s mutilation and shift in balance that they have unknowingly developed supernatural gifts, called their “energy”. Juliette Ferrars is one of them. Her touch is so powerful it can shatter walls… and kill other human beings. After a terrible accident involving a little child, Juliette is put away in an asylum, locked away in a cell on her own, with only a notebook to keep her company. She has no link to the outside world, no way of knowing what is happening to the human race.

Until Adam Kent walks into her cell. A long-lost childhood friend, he is the first human contact she’s had in months, and interestingly, Adam seems immune to her killer touch. The two start to form a friendship, until Juliette finds out Adam has been sent to observe her. His superior Warner wants to use Juliette as a weapon, to keep the civilians quiet and in control. She is sent to his mansion, where is she fed and clothed, in exchange for her help. But Juliette refuses to cooperate, and quickly discovers Adam is on her side. It’s them two against Warner and the world.

What I loved :

  • The writing style, which is very stream of consciousness-y. Juliette’s thoughts start out all chopped up and scared, just like she feels, and gets more fluid as her hope of freedom and a better life grows throughout the book.
  • The secondary characters. Firstly, Adam’s little brother James who is very sweet, funny, believable and nicely developed for a secondary character. And Adam’s friend Kenji, who flirts outrageously with Juliette.

What I didn’t like :

  • Having to read the same love scene about 100 times. Mafi tends to always use the same words and phrases when describing Juliette and Adam’s romantic activities.
  • The story is perhaps a bit slow to start with. But things really do pick up as the book progresses.

Overall, I definitely recommend this book, and most importantly this book series, which just keeps getting better!