27/02/2014

Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer {Michelle Hodkin}


 
Mara Dyer wakes up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there. She believes there must be more to than accident that killed her friends than she can remember.

There must be a reason she was left mysteriously unharmed. And there must be a reason she's seeing ghosts of her friends and picturing the deaths of other people before they happen.

Mara must be losing her mind. At least, that's what her family thinks. But Noah Shaw, the most beautiful boy she's ever seen, isn't put off. He won't give up on her. And as her life unravels around her, Mara can't help but wonder whether Noah is hiding a secret of his own.

 

 
Going into this book I wasn't sure what I was going to get: there was a mysterious synopsis, a vague hint of love and a creepy cover. So was I going to get a thriller, a mystery or a romance? Guys, I got all three. And it was brilliant.

This book truly is about Mara completely unravelling. The creepiness is sky high, whether it's Mara picturing people's deaths (graphically) or seeing the ghosts of her dead friends. Either way, I was a little hesitant to turn off my lights before bed.

Michelle Hodkin did a great job of blurring the boundaries between real life and fantasy; we don't know if Mara is dreaming, going through PTSD or if she's legitimately seeing these things. And that makes it all the more chilling, because I began to second-guess everything and doubt what was real or not. I began to go a little crazy alongside Mara.

The romance is quite a big part of the story, but not in a way where it eclipses the plot. Instead Mara's relationship with Noah is weaved into all the weirdness and becomes an essential part of the plot. Everything comes full circle and by the end of the book so much about their interactions begin to make sense.

Noah was a great character and brought the story to life. This is a dark and intense read, and being inside Mara's mind can be draining, so Noah's ray of light was more than welcome. He is a combination of the misunderstood bad-boy and the funny, guy-next-door and I thought it worked perfectly. Michelle Hodkin added a lot of layers to someone that could have been another cliché love interest, making Noah a three-dimensional character with a story of his own.


This was a beautifully eerie, dark read that combined horror, suspense and romance to make a book that I tore through in just one day. It kept me on edge and I never stopped guessing what was going to happen next or the reasons behind Mara's friends' deaths. I found it wonderfully refreshing to read a book that actually managed to keep me in suspense.

"I'd hit that so hard whoever pulled me out would become the King of England."

 
 

 

Allie is a Pimm's-obsessed reader, who dreams of road tripping over America, learning to surf & becoming fluent in all the languages of her heritage (which, sadly, does not include Elvish). If she's not reading or blogging, you can find her catching up on Teen Wolf, or reigning supreme with Scrabble/Mario Kart.
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21 comments:

  1. OOh nice review! Reviews for this one are popping up lately! Decided I had to add it to my TBR pile as well! Can't wait to dive in!

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  2. Have you read the second one already? I think I gave The Unbecoming 2.5 stars. Couldn't really connect, but still enjoyed it. Wasn't that creepy in my opinion, but when I think back to it, it was pretty darn creepy as you said. Then I read Evolution and holy hell! It was soooooo creepy and I basically had to sleep with one eye open throughout the next few weeks lol. Also, you found this cliff hanger to be agonizing, yeah? Heh. I hope you have the power to hold on a little and not read Evolution right away since Retribution was pushed back and after you finish Evolution? You'll want to get your hands on Retribution like the end of the world was coming for you if you didn't, because DAT ENDING. GAHHHH!!!! I'm still not over it. Such a lovely review and I'm glad you didn't pick a creepy quote :D

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    1. Just finished it last night! THAT ENDING OMG. I just can't . . . if that's true then the world makes no sense and GAH. I cannot process this!

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  3. I have had this book on my kindle app for a while - now I am really excited to start it!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

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  4. Love that cover! I may have to seek this one out. Sometimes I just need a good creepy thriller!

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    1. It definitely ups the creepy anty. Especially book 2 *shudders*

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  5. These books are so creepy and wacky and crazy -- can't wait to see what you think of the next one!
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. Just finished it last night and I have no words because of that ending!

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  6. Oh gosh, I think I desperately need this ASAP!! I haven't read many reviews of it, though I see it going around on everyone's blogs. But this sounds EXACTLY like the sort of thing I'd like. Blurring fantasy and reality? Delicious.

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    1. It really does do it fantastically. I was so confused (in a good way) throughout. Book 2 was an even bigger mind f*ck!

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  7. I love books with a vague summary... there's just something fun and mysterious about going in blind. The ability to be surprised, in a positive and sometimes negative way. I'm glad this was one of the good surprises!

    This one has been on my radar for a while, and now I'm SURE I have to go and get myself a copy!
    Great review! :)

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    1. You will NOT regret it, Iris. Seriously. GOGOGO!

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  8. So many people have given these books a high rating I really want to go back and give the book a second chance. I just couldn't get into it the first time. Love the sound of the ending!

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  9. Isn't this book amazing? I am in love with Noah Shaw!!! I love that this book constantly kept me confused but I could not stop reading! Great review!

    Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

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    1. Noah Shaw is the epitome of perfection. Have you read the second one? Because THE FEELS

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  10. Great review Allie, I really want to read this book and cannot wait until I do! I just love creepy books especially in YA.

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

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    1. I think you'll fricken love this one, Jeann! If the creepiness doesn't draw you in, then Noah Shaw will!

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  11. I was crazy too with Mara when I read this book. Michelle Hodkin is really clever at making readers to doubt manu things of the story.
    I bet you'll love the sequel too! :)

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    1. I did, I did! But now the agonising wait until February begins :(

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  12. Ooh! I love the sound of this one, plus the cover is gorgeous. Great post!

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