Review: Unravel Me (#2, Shatter Me) by Tahereh Mahi

My Thoughts

Consuming. Intense.  Thrilling. 
An utterly addictive sequel overflowing with every emotion you can feel.
My heart relentlessly pounded its way through this story,
which left me breathless and begging for more.

5stars

Synopsis

unravel meIn this electrifying sixty-page companion novella to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, discover the fate of the Omega Point rebels as they go up against The Reestablishment. Set during and soon after the final moments of Unravel Me, Fracture Me is told from Adam’s perspective.

As Omega Point prepares to launch an all-out assault on The Reestablishment soldiers stationed in Sector 45, Adam’s focus couldn’t be further from the upcoming battle. He’s reeling from his breakup with Juliette, scared for his best friend’s life, and as concerned as ever for his brother James’s safety. And just as Adam begins to wonder if this life is really for him, the alarms sound. It’s time for war.

On the battlefield, it seems like the odds are in their favor—but taking down Warner, Adam’s newly discovered half brother, won’t be that easy. The Reestablishment can’t tolerate a rebellion, and they’ll do anything to crush the resistance . . . including killing everyone Adam has ever cared about.

My Review

I think I held my breath for the entirety of this book. Certainly, undeniably, unequivocally for Chapter-set-me-ablaze-and-shatter-me-into-a-million-infinitesimal-pieces-Sixty Two. This second full-length novel in the Shatter Me series packed a serious emotional punch. It’s the kind of book I inhaled as my heart threatened to burst from my chest, my pulse pumping wildly, anxiety, fear and excitement all simultaneously coursing through me and consuming me as I devoured the story. I felt so much all at once. I felt every moment. Pain. Sadness. Fear. Anger. Hopelessness. Hope. Desire. Betrayal. It was a maelstrom of tumultuous emotions as the story unfolded and entwined and twisted in ways I didn’t see coming. It was thrilling and suspenseful and I couldn’t put it down for a single second.

“I am nothing more than the consequence of catastrophe.”

In this part of Juliette’s story, we see her continue to grapple with herself, but this time the turmoil within is fueled from her inability to adapt to her new life at Omega Point. In addition, she continues to fail at tapping into her power in efforts to control it. The uplifting hope she felt upon arrival waned just as quickly and transformed into a consuming uncertainty… an all-too-familiar fear that she isn’t good enough, strong enough, worthy enough. Her insecurities cripple and she finds herself almost paralyzed. Wondering if something will happen. If she’ll hurt someone. If she’ll fit in. If she’ll figure herself out. She’s too scared to reach out to the people she’s begun to care for, fearful she will only kill them hurt them before too long.

“I wonder at my incapacity for easy banter, smooth conversation, empty words to fill awkward moments. I don’t have a closet filled with umms and ellipses ready to insert at the beginnings and ends of sentences. I don’t know how to be a verb, an adverb, any kind of modifier. I’m a noun through and through.”

The duality and dimension of Juliette’s persona is so intriguing because she’s both incredibly powerful and incredibly fragile. Yet those two elements are also irrevocably linked because the very emotions that break her are the same ones she must harness to control the power that lies inside, ready to be unleashed at any moment. She feels so much and so deeply, but she is a constant storm. A constant rage of feelings she doesn’t understand, that change from one moment to the next. Her life is a non-stop cycle of turbulent ups and downs with fleeting moments of hope followed by such low lows that they devour her spirit whole. And the more she learns of her true capabilities, the more realizations come into a sharp focus.

“I understand, for the first time, that I have the power to destroy everything.”

She realizes, however, that Adam is also not himself. He’s hiding something and he seems to be falling apart. I was beginning to become unhinged myself at all the unrightness of their situation. Everything and everyone seemed fully charged, intense, ready to implode. And when the truths are revealed, it destroys her. Suddenly hope is not only out of reach, but it’s crushed for an eternity and she begins to retreat inside herself once more.

“I should’ve listened when my parents told me that things like me aren’t allowed to have dreams. Things like me are better off destroyed, is what my mother said to me. And I’m beginning to think they were right.”

With everything not happening between her and Adam and the threat of war imminent, she finds herself face-to-face with Warner again and she realizes something has changed. He has changed. Or perhaps she is seeing another side of him, one that seems to unsettle every molecule of her being. She’s unable to hate him any longer, but what they have between them… the energy that crackles every time they are together… is frightening.

“Warner as a human being terrifies me more than anything else.”

And let me tell you, as someone who started cheering vehemently on Team Adam’s side, to someone who was torn after reading Destroy Me, I found myself hopelessly falling for Warner. The things he says, his brutal honesty, his pain and his selfless love for Juliette… it’s too much to ignore. As Juliette says about Warner, “We are synonyms, but we are not the same.” The truth of the matter, however, is that he seems to understand her in a way nobody else does. They understand each other and that feeling is a very powerful thing. I desperately want Warner to find redemption.

“Every single day I’m sorry… Sorry for believing the things I heard about you. And then for hurting you when I thought I was helping you. I can’t apologize for who I am… That part of me is already done; already ruined. I gave up on myself a long time ago. But I am sorry I didn’t understand you better.”

And then, we have Chapter 62, which I won’t spoil in any way for you, despite me desperately wanting to quote entire chunks of it so we can sigh and swoon and burn up together. That chapter should be felt, experienced, entirely unspoiled.

“He’s looking so deeply into my eyes that I’m surprised I haven’t buckled under the intensity and I realize then, right in this moment I realize that everything about him is intense. Nothing about him is manageable or easy to compartmentalize. He’s too much. Everything about him is too much. His emotions, his actions, his anger, his aggression. His love.”

I loved this book. LOVED it so hard. Loved all the characters. Loved that Juliette was finally growing and evolving. Getting stronger and finally ready to fight. For the cause. For her future. For herself. At its conclusion, I finally released a shaky breath, but still felt coiled tight with anxiety and tension. SO MUCH HAPPENS. So many secrets revealed. So much action. So much intensity. Waiting a month for the epic conclusion of this series seems impossible. I cannot wait to see what will happen in Ignite Me, who will get redemption and ultimately who, if anyone, will hold Juliette’s heart.

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SHATTER ME

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