By: Tahereh Mafi
Narrated by: Kate Simses
Shatter Me begins with Juliette Ferrars trapped in a cell undergoing solitary confinement. She hasn't spoken to anyone, or touched anyone since coming to the cell 264 days ago. Her touch inflicts excruciating agony upon whomever she touches. Sometimes even causing death. But, things begin to change when she is given a cell mate. A boy cell mate.
Audio Review: Andye is going to throw things at me, but this was not my favorite narrator. I know many people have adored Kate Simses' narration of this title, but it was tough for me to get through. I think that I prefer my female narrators to have a deeper, more husky voice. The higher pitched ones give the impression (to me) of girlishness and weakness. There were times when I really enjoyed her narration, and others (particularly the romantic bits) where I just didn't.
Book Review: Oh, this book, this book, this book. The hype surrounding Shatter Me was at a fever pitch last fall. And probably still is, seeing as how this book was nominated twice for Tell Me What to Read. I follow Taherah Mafi on twitter, and find her absolutely delightful. Andye recommends the audio, Angie and Holly both enjoyed the book, so it seemed to be a sure-winner.
I don't really know how this book went wrong for me, but it did. I found the constant metaphors to be tiring. Perhaps even more in audio, since in print I can easily skip it. But, about the time that Juliette was going to be released from her jail cell, I was really exhausted. Each emotion or piece of inner dialogue (of which there was a lot), was repeated in multiples of three. I really struggled with this, because I felt like Daughter of Smoke and Bone had a lot of metaphors as well. And I really enjoyed that book. I think it was the repetition that just put it over the edge. Coupled with the fact that there were some really strange metaphors (jaw bones dangling from shoelaces to show surprise, blushing to bones, etc) that made me laugh out loud in a few places.
And, the heart of the matter is that I really just didn't like Juliette all that much. Remember how I always say that I don't mind a slow plot as long as I love the character? I felt so disconnected to Juliette that the slow plot made it difficult for me to care about her story. Also, she found her love interest, Adam, so quickly that I never felt like we were able to make a connection just about her. Which was sad, because Adam, being the childhood sweetheart, seems like it totally would have fit the bill for me.
The plot is pretty slow. There are 2, maybe 3 major events, and the rest of the novel is spent pretty much in Juliette's head thinking.
So, what did I like? I really did think the writing was beautiful. It was just sensory overload. With a little bit of a lighter touch, I really would have enjoyed the book. The concept is exciting, and I actually really enjoyed the last 25% of the book when things started to pick up.
There is some pretty heavy romance in this book. It's definitely more appropriate for older teens. There is also some swearing.
*As a very very tiny sidenote: I don't like the name Adam.