Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

Unravel MeUnravel Me by Tahereh Mafi
Series: Shatter Me #2
Published by: HarperTeen on February 5, 2013
Genre: Dystopian, Post Apocalyptic, Romance, Science Fiction
Pages: 480
Source: Purchased
Buy on AmazonBook Details
Rating: ★★★★

it's almost
time for war.

Juliette has escaped to Omega Point. It is a place for people like her—people with gifts—and it is also the headquarters of the rebel resistance.

She's finally free from The Reestablishment, free from their plan to use her as a weapon, and free to love Adam. But Juliette will never be free from her lethal touch.

Or from Warner, who wants Juliette more than she ever thought possible.

In this exhilarating sequel to Shatter Me, Juliette has to make life-changing decisions between what she wants and what she thinks is right. Decisions that might involve choosing between her heart—and Adam's life.

This book is ridiculous confusing. And I mean that in the best way. For starters, Tahereh Mafi drops about 8 bombs on us in this book. It’s like BAM big reveal, BAM bigger reveal, BAM your mind = blown. But beyond that, Unravel Me is a book that will, somehow, force you to love the bad guy despite your better judgement.

To be honest, I think it helped that it had been months and months since I’d read Shatter Me, so I’d actually forgotten how cruel Warner really was. In Unravel Me we see a completely different side to him, but since I didn’t remember many details from Shatter Me, it was like I was seeing Warner for the first time… and maybe he wasn’t so bad. And this is one of the reasons why Unravel Me has left me completely confused. Which guy am I rooting for?

“Is it even possible,” he whispers, “that you can’t feel this fire between us?”
Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi, Page 391

I think the ‘problem’ with Unravel Me is that the book itself feels very much in Warner’s favour. While Adam is definitely still there, he’s portrayed as a much weaker, insignificant character than Warner is. I wanted to love Adam, but then Warner was here and he was stronger, and hotter, and—ignoring his psychopathic tendencies—he felt like the more logical choice. MIND = FUCKED. I kind of loved him. Then there would be a passage that was like, “Oh, remember the time Warner tried to kill Adam in a slaughter house?” and I was like… oh… this guy is actually messed up. But then, Warner would be all deep and emotional and sexy and badass-y and I’d start drooling a little.

Because of Warner’s total fucked up-ness and his complicatedness, he was my favourite character. The others… I wasn’t quite as keen on. Juliette is definitely a complicated character. She has every right to be messed up and a little depressed, but it did get frustrating after a while. Sometimes I just wanted to tell her to grow up and deal with it. Quit complaining, quit moping, and deal with the card you’ve been given.

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi - Mass chaos is in my future

And then there’s Kenji. Everyone and their mother loves Kenji. Me… not so much. Kenji is an arrogant, cocky loud-mouth. To a certain extent, I can see where people like him. If you ignore his arrogance, his blatant (and probably half joking) “everyone loves me and I’m so cool” attitude, he is certainly a fierce and loyal friend (and sometimes a little funny—see quote below). But I always have a hard time looking past the arrogance. Arrogance and too much cockiness are qualities that I have a hard time looking past. It’s just who I am.

“Mmmmmmm,” he said. “You’re like a sexy, super-scary plant.”
Kenji, Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi, Page 173

My only other problem with Unravel Me was the internal stream of consciousness. To a certain extent, being inside Juliette’s head is awesome. The metaphors are insane and there are so many highlight-able passages. Tahereh Mafi’s writing overall is gorgeous and flows really well. But there’s just so much THINKING. I enjoyed parts of it, but in other parts I could help but skim skim skim. There’s so much of Juliette just talking to herself, rambling on and on, or making weird observations about the world around her. I like it in small chunks, but in Unravel Me it did cross a little bit into ‘too much’ territory. If you were to cut out all of the stream of consciousness bits, I bet this book would have been 250 pages instead of 480.

But overall, I did enjoy Unravel Me. It’s true that a few things didn’t quite sit well with me, but I enjoyed it as a whole. The twists and surprises were intense and super fun to read about. I LOVE having bombs dropped on me and Tahereh Mafi absolutely rocks at weaving those in. Also, that ending. THAT ENDING! I wouldn’t say it’s a cliffhanger, but it’s extremely satisfying and you’ll be totally wanting to read more. Juliette finally grows some balls and I was totally rooting for her!

I have a feeling that book 3 will be epic.

The Verdict


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    1. Yeah I think at the end of the day, I’d be fine with either guy. I’ll probably end up loving which ever one stands out most in the third book. Shatter Me was Adam, Unravel Me was Warner, so book 3 could go either way!

  1. In my opinion Unravel Me was a hundred times better than Shatter Me. The stakes were higher in this one and i loved how the paranormal element was so much stronger in this one. I get what your saying about how this book did seem like it was in favour of Warner but Shatter Me in it’s own way was definetly in favour of Adam than Warner too. I felt Tahereh just really wanted us to see that Warner and Juliet do in fact have a lot in common and while Juliet doesn’t slaughter people by the hundreds like Warner does they both are deeply broken inside and come from similar pasts. They understand each other in ways Adam can never understand Juliet. What I love about both boys though, is that Tahereh has managed to create two love interests that perfectly balance Juliet out in different ways. And not to mention, they both seem like a perfect choice. (to some extent…) Honestly while I loved this book and it’s ending (not a cliffhanger but did leave me agititating for it’s seqeul) I think book three will knock it’s socks off.
    Great Review Ashley

  2. NOOOOOOO! You break my heart. 🙁 Okay, I am overreacting, but I do wish you enjoyed it more. I totally get the confusing love for Warner with little writing love for Adam. But I kind of liked it. I didn’t expect it. But I totally agree with Juliette, dear god, I wanted to yell “Get over your shit and put your big girl panties on.”

    I know the parts when we are in Juliettes head can be a little much but that’s my favorite part of the book. So I guess certain things bug us while for others it’s what makes the book good. But still, I so wanted you to be blown away and now I feel bad for pushing it on you.

    Jennifer Bielman recently posted: ARC Review: The Goddess Inheritance by Aimee Carter
    1. Don’t feel bad! I was planning on reading the book anyway! I honestly feel kind of left out because I wish I loved this book as as everyone else is. I still enjoyed it, just not to the fangirl extent that everyone else did! I wish it was like that for me though. 😛

      Oh well. Maybe I’ll like book 3 a bit more!

  3. Totally agree that there is too much thinking, at least from what I remember from Shatter Me (haven’t read Unravel Me yet). I’ve kind of always been on Warner’s side, even when he was acting psychopathic, because Adam was sooo boring. Just because he was nice, doesn’t mean he has a personality, right? Even if Kenji was arrogant and cocky, at least he had a personality too. Adam is just…blaaah. I’m glad you liked it 😀 Can’t wait to read.

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  4. A lot of your issues – stream of consciousness, too much thinking, mopey heroine – were all things I took issue with in Shatter Me, so it’s disappointing to hear that it continues for most of Unravel Me.

    BUT after Destroy Me, I have to read this to see more of the sexy and tortured Warner. And you said Juliette finally grows some balls – that I HAVE to see!

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    1. Yeah for some reason that didn’t bother me much in Shatter Me but it did in Unravel Me. I’m not sure why…

      But at the end she does seem to become seriously kick-ass. I can’t wait to see where she takes that in book 3. 😉

  5. I loved this one so much, although I am sad to hear you say that you don’t like Kenji because I love him so, so, so much lol. He brings a necessary lightness to the book (in my opinion) because I feel that Juliette and Adam are so serious. I definitely agree at how amazing the metaphors were, I read this one on my kindle so I seriously think that I highlighted like half the book because every time I read something I was like oooh I love this lol. Anyway enough rambling, Great review!

    1. Yeah I can understand how people love Kenji, but there were just a few things about him that irked me and I couldn’t look past them!

  6. I am loving this review! I dig the flow of J’s thoughts, but there were a few moments where I wanted to be like, “chill, girl, here’s a Xanax.” She was over the top in this one BUT by the end, I think she’s going to go full on badass in the third book. And THAT is the Juliette I’m excited to see.

    Warner. Oh Warner. You made some valid points in that Adam was portrayed as weaker in Unravel Me. Warner was just so damned dominant, beautiful, flawed-but-not-ruined and amazing that Adam looked so much weaker in comparison, both due to his physical issues and just Warner really BRINGING IT. I felt in SM that he was fascinating, but in DM when we got that inner glimpse, I cracked, and fell SO hard for him. So UM only solidified that. I don’t change teams. I tend to fall for one guy, then stick with my choice. But UM really GOT to me.

    Great review, Ashley! I’m like you, and I think the third book is gonna be amazeballs.

    1. Yep I completely agree! I really liked where Juliette ended up at the end. She definitely has the potential to kick some serious ass in book 3!!

      I don’t normally switch teams either. In SM I was 100% Adam, but then in UM… I don’t know. I might be Warner now! I haven’t actually read DM but I’ve heard that made a lot of people warm up to Warner!

      1. It did, at least for me, because we got to see his motivations. And for the first time, he wasn’t just The Big Bad – he was human, and a guy who has made mistakes, and knows it. I never thought Tahereh could DO that. I was drawn to him, but didn’t think he could ever be redeemed. And in UM, and I think I said it in my review, I still don’t think he’s asking for or expecting forgiveness, but I DO think redemption is possible.

        UM gave me so many thoughts and feelings! I also am starting to wonder if J will end up on her own, too, just for a curveball. It would really complete her character arc and growth I think.

  7. I loved UM so much more than SM. It was a crazy ride that allowed us to see a different, more likable Warner. I ended up liking Warner MORE than I liked Adam. I think Adam was much weaker in this one which initially frustrated me. Juliette was stronger and I could see her starting to open up more which I loved.

    I cannot WAIT for IM.

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