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Unravel Me

Unravel Me - Tahereh Mafi This review and others are posted at Inspiring Insomnia.

1.5 Stars

Even though I thought Shatter Me was very average, all of the hype around this series had me wanting to read Unravel Me. I snapped it up when it was a $1.99 Nook Book shortly after it was released last year. But it sat unread until I had not choice but to read it after checking out from the library a couple of weeks ago. Many of my GR and Twitter friends are so passionate about this series, so I was hoping that whatever was missing for me in the first book would be found here. Instead, Unravel Me was a major disappointment.

Juliette became nearly intolerable in this book. Nearly every page contains some scene of her screaming, crying, gasping, or hyperventilating. Sometime she is doing all four at once. Every minor setback is a catastrophe of epic proportions, propelling Juliette into a full-on meltdown. How do her companions tolerate her? How are the two most beautiful men in the world (as we’re told repeatedly told) in love with her? What exactly IS her appeal?

Warner, the son of the hilariously self-proclaimed “Supreme Commander,” was awful in Shatter Me. He was abusive and disturbingly obsessed with Juliette, but I was assured by fans of the series that he would redeem himself in this book. However, all I can think is, “This is redemption???” Warner is as creepy and slimy as ever. He’s still intent on possessing Juliette. He steals her journal, reads it, and then refuses to return it. Juliette professes to be mortified, but she is actually thrilled over this invasion of her privacy. Because, you know, it shows how much he cares. Mafi is veering dangerously close to the “Stalkers are sexy” theme with Warner and Juliette. If I could speak to Mafi, I’d want her to know that there is nothing appealing about these kind of actions. Being spied upon is not a sign that someone loves you. Period. I can’t respect Juliette for swooning over this behavior, especially since the much talked-about love scene between these two reads like the childish fantasy of a thirteen-year-old Belieber.

How can this budding romance between Warner and Juliette become even more awful? Easy! Insert sweet, boring Adam to make this the most ghastly love triangle imaginable. I won’t spoil it for those who have not read it yet, but love triangles don’t get any worse than this. Trust me.

I’ve barely mentioned the plot, and that’s because there isn’t much of one. Unravel Me is a long string of Juliette’s meltdowns, interspersed with little bits of action. The only interesting character is Kenji, and I’m wondering if it’s too much to hope that he can put this love triangle out of its misery so that he can be the star of Ignite Me.