Friday, November 4, 2011

Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

Author: Michelle Hodkin
Release Date: Already out, buy a copy!
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Add it: Goodreads
Mara Dyer doesn't think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.

It can.

She believes there must be more to the accident she can't remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.

There is.

She doesn't believe that after everything she's been through, she can fall in love.

She's wrong.
Despite the ridiculous amount of gushing (and pull-my-hair-out cryptic) reviews I read for The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, I don't think I was quite prepared for it to mess with my mind as much as it did. I don't want to say too much about the plot specifics, because going into this book completely unprepared is the best way to achieve full appreciation for it. So here are the basics: Mara wakes up in the hospital after she was involved in an accident that killed three of her friends. From that moment on, her life gets messed up. Nothing is what it seems, everything should be questioned and both your mind and Mara's are going to need serious therapy once you're finished.

Michelle has pieced together an absolute masterpiece. She knows exactly how to leave you holding your breathe, fingers fumbling over pages in a desperation, frantic to uncover the secret of Mara. You can never be certain what is truly going on, because Mara herself is never certain. Michelle threw me for a loop so many times in the best damn way. You might think you're on track with one theory, but then something totally unexplainable is added the mix and you're left scratching your head, eyes bugging out of their sockets. And even by the end of the book, while some questions are answered, there is clearly SO much more to uncover, with a twisty cliffhanger ending that will see your jaw spending the afternoon beside your feet.

The characters are all so strong and likeable. From new friend Jamie who is ridiculously awesome to Mara's amazing family, especially her brother Daniel. It was so, so nice to see such an ordinary family unit with strong ties to one another! Mara herself is such a strong, feisty, heroine who I immediately took a liking to. I loved how we experienced this with just as much confusion as she did. Her own feelings mirroring my own, of fear and worry and... desire. Despite the insanity and downright creepiness of her life at the moment, she dealt with it in such a believable way. Her actions and thoughts as everything spiralled out of control felt so real.

And then there's Noah Shaw, whose name will be whispered from the lips of woman [and men] during... er... well, let's just say, it's not Noah they should be thinking of at the time. I think he's officially stolen the crown for Sexiest YA Hottie. Just as Mara was warned about him, so was I. But I still wasn't prepared for the way that devious smile and smooth British accent poisoned my mind. The chemistry he shared with Mara is currently on the run from authorities, due to the amount of volcanoes it caused to erupt around the world. I don't know how the publishers expected the book's spine to hold together such an explosive romance. The witty banter, sexual tension and intoxicating steaminess these two exude is like crack. So addictive and so disappointing when you finally come down from that high, because nothing you try after it will live up to what you just experienced.

It's smart, it's provocative, it's dark and it's twisted. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer will blow your brains. A pulse-raising, mind-bending, jaw-dropping debut, it's the type of book that reminds you why you love reading. The ones that consume your mind for the entire day until you can fall back into its pages. The ones where it's physically painful to put down to cook dinner, because how are chopping carrots going to solve the mystery of page 406? The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is a novel you can't forget in a hurry. Michelle knows how to write suspense and she nails it. Without a doubt, one of the standout novels of 2011!

Note: I loved the Harry Potter references!!

5/5 Golden Apples!!

18 comments:

  1. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Love the review, and love that you adore the book.

    Your review, as always, is amazing and if I hadn't already devoured and loved the book I would by dying to do so.

    Also, shall we meet in the boxing ring for Noah Shaw's heart? haha. He's seriously smoking!

    We need to start a support group to handle the wait for book 2.

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  2. Haha I love you, Kathy <3

    YES. BOXING RING. SATURDAY. NOON. YOU'RE GOING DOWN.

    Ugh, yes. I can't believe we have to wait a freaking year to find out what happens next after the way it ended! I hope Michelle is going to pay for our therapy sessions.

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  3. *whispers* Noah Shawww.. hee hee :P
    I'm so relieved you finally experienced the craziness for yourself!! After the chat with Michelle Hodkin I am freaking DYING for book 2. Like, why else could possibly happen!? Bring on the crazy!

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  4. So, I've been thinking I should read this book... Everyone seems to have loved it and this Noah person! I need to find out what's so special about him!

    THEN YOU MENTIONED HARRY POTTER REFERENCES.
    I AM SOLD.
    WHY DID NO ONE ALERT ME OF THESE LINES?

    Awesome review as usual (have I mentioned how jealous I am of your reviews?) and congratulations on the 800 followers! :)

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  5. HARRY POTTER REFERENCES?!? awesome!!! I need to read this book so badly...I might just go for it. Right now. Well, in the morning. It's past my bedtime...

    Great review Brodie!!

    The Cait Files

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  6. i'M SO GLAD YOU LOVED IT! Mara Dyer is probably hands down the best book of 2011 for me. I LOVED IT TO DEATH!

    Your review said in words perfectly how I feel about the book. And that thing about Noah's name being said on people's lips during... well, yeah. So true!

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  7. Another awesome review :D
    I can not wait to read this but I have a few to get through beforehand - plus I don't have this yet!
    And and and.. HARRY POTTER REFERENCES? Must. Read. This.

    <3

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  8. Awesome review. I adored this book too! And I too loved the Harry Potter references! And Noah? Gosh what a hottie he was. No wait - he's a STUD MUFFIN. haha.

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  9. No way! Sexiest YA Hottie?!?! Now, I REALLY MUST READ THIS BOOK! Fab review Brodie<3

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  10. Freakin' awesome review Brodie! You have me desperate for the book without having given away spoilers. I need this book...STAT!

    I need to read about the romance that has caused volcanoes to erupt and learn all about Noah Shaw Sexiest, YA Hottie and Stud Muffin!

    Rachel @ The Rest Is Still Unwritten

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  11. Didn't I just read a review that totally convinced me to stay the hell away from this book? MAKE UP YOUR MIND, ASHER. Now that I've read this... That's it, I think I'm just going to have to put on my big girl pants and read it all by myself, formulate my own opinion. I can't handle these reviews twisting my mind as much as this book when I haven't even read it yet! xD

    - Asher (from Paranormal Indulgence)

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  12. Oh my God. I've read really mixed reviews on this one. Sometimes people hate it. But sometimes, like you, people love it!! I love how you say this though: "going into this book completely unprepared is the best way to achieve full appreciation for it" - the perfect warning for me to stay away from spoilers. I've been planning to grab this for awhile now but bad reviews keep stopping me. But now that I've read my blogger bestfriend's review - your review that is - I'M CONVINCED!! *pulls hair*

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  13. Yay Mara Dyer! I love your awesome review and just like Kathy said, if I hadn't already read it, I would jump right into it!:D And that's exactly what I thought while reading it too - it's the kind of book that reminds you why you love reading. AWESOMENESS!

    Also, make room for me too in that box match. Oh my Noah! *fans self*

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  14. Thank you all for your amazing comments! I <3 you all hardcore.

    Okay, so for all the Noah [wannabe] lovers. Saturday. Noon. Bring your boxing gloves and your best loser face, because that boy is coming home with me!

    Sonia - Eeee, thank you! I just noticed that :) And I'm so happy you read my review, since you've now started Mara LOL.

    Erin - Hahahaha Stud Muffin. TASTY NOAH.

    Asher - Ignore the bad reviews!! Well, okay, they're valid opinions. But they're totally misguided :P I hope will you enjoy it!

    Precious: You KNOW I would never lead you astray! I seriously think you will love this. READ IT SOON!

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  15. HELL YEAH. I am obsessed with this book. i have been ever since I read the ARC way back when! I mean if you saw my review, and the blog tour... I basically gush over my ass about it! Hahah. I'm so glad you enjoyed it as much as me!

    AND YESSSSSSS NOAH SHAW. Sexiest M* F* ALIVE. I'd keep him locked in my bed forever. I mean... errr. ;)

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  16. Great, great review! I agree with absolutely everything you just said. I could barley put it down while reading it! It was amazingly good. And Noah... Yeah. I agree with everything. ;)

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  17. Wow! I so badly wanted this one and then saw loads of mixed reviews and became indecisive lol. But after your review, I'm leaning towards "yep time to press the buy button" and I do love dark and twisted :)

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  18. Okay, how did I miss that you had reviewed this already? Silly Andie.

    I am SO GLAD you have read and loved it. Because it is AWESOME. And what a great review! This makes me want to reread it all over again, haha. I'm going to wait until closer to the sequel's release though because I don't think I can handle that cliffhanger again. ARGH!

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