Title: Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2)
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Publication date: February 5, 2013
Genre(s): Young Adult (Dystopian)
My immediate reaction upon finishing Unravel Me
I just.... I can't even.. I am so heartbroken, yet overjoyed that I fell in love with this book just as I fell in love with Shatter Me. Tahereh Mafi, you amaze me with your writing and your words and how they form pages full of intricate and poetic sentences and heartbreakingly beautiful monologues. Warner.. oh Warner, I love you just as much as I love Adam.. if not a little bit more because of how unbelievably messed up you are. I feel like I am betraying Adam if I root for Warner but also feel like I am betraying Warner if I root for Adam. Why do you do this to me Tahereh? WHY?
.....I need some time alone to.. to get over this beautiful book.
The next day
I believe I have a clearer idea of what I want to include in this review. I will still be confessing my unconditional love towards it, but between that you will still get a logical and comprehensible review. I read Shatter Me (review here) and Divergent around the same time. Actually, one after the other. And a couple of months ago Insurgent came out. You can imagine my unbelievable expectations for that book and I dove straightaway and stayed up all night reading. When I finished it.. I was satisfied.. but my expectations weren't exactly met. I won't get into that but you can check my review here. So you can imagine how worried and hesitant I was to read Unravel Me. My expectations were so high, even higher than what I had for Insurgent. I even told my sister that maybe I should read it another time? Maybe after a book or two.. but I did pick it up.. and finished it in a single day. Unravel Me was so beautiful, so mesmerizing and deliciously addicting. It is an addiction I never want to break free from.
Unravel Me continues from where Shatter Me stops. Juliette is trying, and failing miserably, to control her powers. Yes, at the beginning Juliette was moping and whiny.. everyone at Omega Point is labeling her as a monster and whispering and pointing fingers at her, so yes I understand why she was feeling that way. Adam has become busy with Castle and him and Juliette never seem to have any alone time. Juliette spends all her time in a room trying to harness her power and focus. Then enters Kenji, the guy who I was stupid enough to say that I didn't like him in Shatter Me. I have a confession to make. I LOVE Kenji; I adore him and want him to be my best friend. I personally believe he was the light in Juliette's gloomy and lonely world that she hides in her head. He brought her back from her misery, helped her with building her confidence, her powers, and even had to endure listening to her talk about her love life about Adam. The banter between her and Kenji were so funny, I just couldn't stop laughing and wanted more scenes that included Kenji.
If you haven't fallen in love with him from the quotes above, I am sure you will from the quote below. I loved that we finally got to see the serious side of him and his importance at Omega Point. I have to say that I was pretty surprised by how high up he seemed in Omega Point.
Which Team am I on?
Putting aside my newfound love for Kenji. I have to say that I am back to being on the fence about which team I should be, Adam or Warner. However after I took some time to think, I believe that I will have my heart broken regardless of who Juliette ends up with. When I read destroy me, I switched to Team Warner, but after reading Unravel Me.. I can't believe that I ever doubted my love for Adam. So this brings me back to Tahereh Mafi, and her need to create the most heart wrenching and excruciating love triangle I have ever read about. Adam is the guy who taught Juliette that it is ok to love and trust someone, it is ok to be herself and to love herself. He is this 18 year old boy who takes care of his 10 year old brother and at the same time risked his life for her. He loves Juliette so much and it is so obvious in Unravel Me to the point of putting my emotional turmoil in overdrive.
As for Warner.. Warner, the misunderstood and lonely 19 year old boy. He is so much like Juliette.. the world sees him as a monster and he has given up on ever redeeming himself or trying to turn himself into a better man. That in itself brought me so much hurt and sadness towards him. You will see Warner here for the misunderstood and lonely boy that he really is and you can't help but fall in love with him too. It is impossible to choose between those two guys and I do not envy Juliette's dilemma in any way. I honestly wish that Tahereh Mafi would have made one of the characters less appealing or do an unforgiving action so that we could wholeheartedly cheer for the other one, but I guess Mafi wants us to suffer for another year, if not throughout our whole life for the decision that will have to be made by Juliette in the end.
However I have to point out that Warner, in my opinion, is at an advantage. He has a whole novella from his POV, giving us insight into his own world, the way he thinks, humanizing him and making us sympathize with him. Also the conversations him and Juliette had together in Unravel Me were very insightful. I just felt they connected more. I feel sorry for Adam because he barely had any part in Unravel Me, and even in Shatter Me we never read through a scene where they sat together and talked. I just hope the new novella (Shatter Me 2.5) Tahereh is writing is from Adam's POV. This is the only way I believe she can level the field and make it more torturous for us to pick sides.
Tell me, how can you even begin to choose between those two?!
The main protagonist
As for Juliette, I loved getting back into her head and reading her thoughts and the crossed out words and her poetic and symbolic writing. I have never read anything like it before and I find it to be the most beautiful and emotional type of writing. I only hope Tahereh Mafi keeps on writing her books in this way because it would be such a loss to the literary world if she would stop. Juliette, after her initial moping, takes matters into her own hands and joins the fight. Her
cursegift is so astonishing and even more powerful than what we, and Juliette imagined. I loved that with the progression of the novel you can see how she also progresses, in terms of accepting herself and her abilities. She finally opens up to more than just Adam; I loved the moments she spent just talking with Warner because this showed that she has opened up to him and also the readers find out more about Warner's life, sometimes that I have been starving for as a reader.
The Shatter Me trilogy have never really focused on the world building aspect of this dystopian world, but more on Juliette as a person and her development. We have The Reestablishment, the evil antagonist, Warner's father, and the rebels who reside at Omega Point. In Unravel Me we get more of the big picture and more planning and even a fight between both sides, however the focus is still on Juliette. A fight went down between both sides, as I mentioned, but since Juliette wasn't where the fight went, we don't really get to be a part of it, however shadowing Juliette never gets boring or less exciting.
The shocking revelations
Oh yea, I am not only talking about chapter 62, though that was a shock in itself that broke my heart a little bit, but other revelations throughout the book. Ones concerning Adam, and others concerning Adam and Warner, and of course, that ending. I literally gasped more than once and I can't believe that Tahereh ended it in the way she did. I can't say that the ending is a cliff hanger, but it is one that I will be thinking about this for the full waiting duration of the third book. I can't express how much I loved this book and love the Shatter Me books in general. I can't recommend this book enough and I will be recommending it to anyone I talk to from now till the end of time! Be sure to pick this book up if you haven't because you really are missing out on one of the best written novels I have ever read.