Monday, October 27, 2014

Ignite Me (Shatter Me #3) by Tahereh Mafi: review

Goodreads rating: 4.48
Hardcover, 409 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by HarperCollins
Series: Shatter Me #3

The heart-stopping conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, which Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, called “a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love.”

With Omega Point destroyed, Juliette doesn’t know if the rebels, her friends, or even Adam are alive. But that won’t keep her from trying to take down The Reestablishment once and for all. Now she must rely on Warner, the handsome commander of Sector 45. The one person she never thought she could trust. The same person who saved her life. He promises to help Juliette master her powers and save their dying world . . . but that’s not all he wants with her.

The Shatter Me series is perfect for fans who crave action-packed young adult novels with tantalizing romance like Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and Legend by Marie Lu. Tahereh Mafi has created a captivating and original story that combines the best of dystopian and paranormal, and was praised by Publishers Weekly as “a gripping read from an author who’s not afraid to take risks.” Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and satisfying end.

The review includes spoilers from books one and two. 

Initial reaction:
BEFORE READING: She better not end up with Warner. He's done too many bad things, and while I sort of enjoyed the famous chapter 62 of Unravel Me, I have never once changed my mind about him. All I'm saying, Tahereh, is don't screw this up.
AFTER READING: All I have to say is Team KENJI!!! He totally stole my heart in this one; he will be the only true constant in Juliette's life. Also, this book could have been better. It was all about the relationships and by the time it came to dethroning the Reestablishment, it was so anticlimactic. Like really anticlimactic! Although I love the open-ended ending.
 Well, the writing was still fantastic. I will always love the lyrically symbolic way she describes everything. I don't think anything can be as good as the first book, but this book still held the same lilting song-like writing style I grew to love within the first pages of Shatter Me. But, as you could hopefully tell from the above initial reaction, this book didn't turn out the way I wanted it to. At all. The first thing that annoyed me about this book happened before I even started it; Mafi wrote a novella about Warner and I heard that it turned everyone's ideas of Warner on their heads. I was so not down with that. Plus. what happened in that infamous chapter 62 in Unravel Me gave me some inkling of what was going to be a problem in Ignite Me. And I wasn't wrong. When I started this book, it was made pretty obvious that the main focus was going to be the romance. But I didn't know it was going to consume nearly the entire book. I could have forgiven this, though, if the way the romances unfolded hadn't sucked so much and been so ridiculous. If you read the book, you know what I mean.

We're given excuse after excuse of why everything he did to Warner. I didn't give this book 3 1/2 apples because of who Juliette ends up with. I could've understood why she chose who she did if certain things had been done differently with both choices (I know I'm being a bit cryptic, but if you really want to know and have read the book, read the spoilers below). But the truth is that Adam became someone we didn't know, and I hate that Mafi did that. He was justified in how he felt, yet we're supposed to hate him for "suddenly" being a jerk. Juliette felt like she never even knew Adam, and that pissed me off. Their relationship was too deep and steeped in history that it was impossible for him to change as much as he did and for me to hate him as much as Mafi wanted us to. It amazed me how everyone's opinions did a complete turnaround once certain truths were revealed and everything was forgiven. So ridiculous.

Like I said above: what I loved most about this book was Kenji. I wish she had ended up with Kenji because, really, he was her best friend and the only one that wasn't being a total jerk. Where would we be without the humor of Kenji in this book; it definitely would've sucked even more than it already did. I actually don't understand all the positive reviews this book got; I think it's because there were people that were on a certain team that ended up getting their wish with Ignite Me. This book was nowhere near as good as the first or even the second, and it's for every other reason but the romance. Even her gorgeous writing took a serious nose-dive into suckage near the end. There was nothing left of the lilting prose that had originally drawn me to this series. But despite the fact that this isn't my favorite book, Mafi is still an extremely talented writer, and I can't wait to see what she comes out with next!

 I'm so pissed how it all went down. If Juliette had legitimately fallen in love with Warner by the simple fact that she wanted him more and had grown up so much that she'd outgrown the person Adam was, then I wouldn't gotten it. I was always Team Adam; Warner did too many bad things to be justified as a fully-forgiven person in my mind. Mafi made us hate Adam by making him always act like an a**hole, and that didn't seem fair. A better ending is that she shouldn't have ended up with anyone. But I also think that Mafi's only saving grace with this one was that she didn't outright say she'd end up with Warner. There were no sappy promises of forever. But it was pretty much implied.

 People who enjoy this series, and love dystopians and superheroes!

The Under the Never Sky trilogy by Veronica Rossi
The Legend Trilogy by Marie Lu
Divergent trilogy by Veronica Roth

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