book review: shatter me

I knew about this book from the hype among bibliophiles on instagram and became more interested to read it when i found out that the author, Tahereh Mafi, was a hijabi Muslim. It's quite rare to find Muslim women as young adult authors nowadays, so i instantly became drawn to read her books. A lot of people were saying that they were great and urged me to read them too, so when i found them at at cheaper prices, i went and ordered them despite being broke, heh.

I have to say, it was an unexpected read. In good and bad ways.

Shatter Me is a book from the perspective of a 17-year-old girl named Juliette, who wasn't an ordinary human. Ever since she was born(i think?), she possessed an extraordinary and dangerous ability that forced her to be isolated from the society because of the threat that she posed to the people around her. Juliette can torture people by making direct contact with another human's skin.

She never got to live like a normal child. She never received mutual love from her parents, who sees Juliette as a burden and blames her being who she was. Juliette had no friends and spends a lot of her time reading books. After accidentally killing a little boy when she was fourteen, Juliette was sent away to do testings and eventually ends up being locked away. She was isolated from the society for 3 years, including being forced to live in a cell with nothing much except a lonely bed and a notebook for nearly a year.

After many months, she received a cellmate. It turned out that Juliette has met her cellmate before in her distant past. Without meaning to, she falls in love with Adam Kent. 

I wish i could say more about the story without spoiling anything, but i'm not really sure how to do that. In all honestly, i was quite bored with the book for most of the early chapters. However, the style of writing was quite extraordinary, which was about the only thing that kept me reading the book. It lacked a LOT of commas, but i guess that's because the author wanted us to read the story from Juliette's point of view. From the view of a teenager, i guess it's quite realistic to have continuous thoughts and all. It also had many "strikeout" sentences, indicating Juliette's honest thoughts that she thought were too mean to write(hence, she crossed them out), or that she's in denial about something. That was something different, which was interesting. Her thoughts can be beautiful and descriptive at times, but at other times they're just plain annoying. The beautiful ones were worth putting a coloured pagemarker on.

The plot was a little slow for me, but the last few chapters were quite brilliant. I was amazed by how much the story shifted, and i could finally understand what the hype was all about. I guess i expected the good parts to come sooner, and now i just hate myself for falling into hypes with high expectations. But anyway, the buildup towards the exciting part wasn't that bad i guess. It was interesting that the world in the book was futuristic, being ruled by a government that had an idealistic ideology but didn't have humanity in its implementation. The objectives and vision of that government was haunting and creepy, which was interesting. Since i recently watched Interstellar, the world seemed similar in ways, with the dying of crops and nature and all. 

One thing you might need to be aware of about this book is how mature it can get. There are a lot of "making-out" parts in the story, which honestly bothered me a lot. So yeah, it's probably not that suitable for underage/immature readers. The level of swearing is moderate, not too frequent. The concept and idea of the story is what makes the book worth reading. I wouldn't say the main character is lovable, but other characters in the book can grow on you.

[SPOILER SECTION. Don't lah read if you haven't read the book]

I don't like Juliette. I don't like how she instantly falls in love with Adam just by looking at his physical. It was a little too fast for me, even though she was in denial about it. It's also hard for me to buy love stories where two people have known each other since they were kids and stays in love till they're older, especially in this story since they've never even spoken to each other. If they(especially Adam) were really like normal teenagers, i think they would have moved on a lot sooner. I loved the reasons why Adam fell in love with Juliette though. His descriptions of how he saw her when they were younger were really sweet and charming. It made me wish someone would notice things about me without me realizing it too, heheh.

Warner. Damn, he is just creepy. I don't have much opinion of him except that i feel really sorry for him. I love how there's so much mystery about him though, being immune to Juliette's touch and all. There's a section at the back about the story in Warner's point of view, but i haven't gotten around to reading it. I heard Destroy Me is a novella in his point of view though, so he must be quite an important character though i can't see much of it yet.

 The making out parts. It was just too much for me, and too frequent. I would be totally fine if it were described just once or twice, but they made out so many times(and the details were quite specific in indirect ways) that i ended up being so annoyed with the two characters expressing their unnecessary teenage hormones so desperately. I mean, i understand that Juliette has almost no experience whatsoever in even having body contact with another human being, and that Adam probably never liked anyone enough to do the same. But still, CHILL OUT PEOPLE. They seemed so reckless and not bothered by the inappropriate timing, place and situation. The descriptions were also hilariously exaggerated, but i guess that's normal to describe those fiery moments. It just sounded pretty ridiculous to me, that's all. 

The story got good for me once they reached Adam's house.It got even more exciting when they reached the "safe place" Kenji brought them to. OMG that was the best part, and my overall opinion for the book was saved by the awesome new ideas and possibilities at the end. I was really mindblown because of two reasons; first it felt like it was X-Men and X-Men is awesome. Next, because Kenji went undercover and i had the same emotions as reading awesome spy books like Alex Rider and CHERUB when he finally revealed his true self. Lastly, the idea that there's a secret society living underground with their own systems and plans and security was just fascinating. I wish a lot more pages were spent on describing the nature of this new society, but i guess that's what makes it strategic to make the readers read the next book.

[End of spoiler section]

So yeah. Not a bad book, but there are better choices to read first, in my opinion. Maybe the second book will be better throughout the whole thing, hopefully. I don't think guys will enjoy this series. The thoughts are very girly. I'm rating this book. 4.3 out of 5. The covers are undeniably beautiful :)


  1. omg same. i mean like i hate it a lot if the female character falls in love too quickly with the guy . like cassie to evan in the fifth wave, and mara dyer to noah shaw. i couldnt stand it sometimes that i stopped reading mara dyer 😅

  2. KANNNN!LIKE OMG ITS NOT EVEN CLICHE BECAUSE ITS SO UNREALISTIC. ahh damn i havent read maya dyer yet. what's ur fav book with the romance?:D



About Me

My photo

if a house is made from a thousand bricks, then let me be one of those bricks, to help keep the house together, to make a significant difference.

Total Pageviews

Follow me on Instagram!



2017 Reading Challenge

2017 Reading Challenge
Kamalia has read 15 books toward her goal of 50 books.