Tuesday, 6 March 2012

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

Hardcover: 464 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (September 27, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1442421762

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.

Cover: This has to be one of my all time favourite covers.  I think it's beautifully romantic and intimate, and he's holding her protectively (remember I'm a romantic!) while they're surrounded by that murkiness and danger. *sigh*

I FINALLY got round to reading this.  When it was first released last year there was so much hype around this book, and I read and watched numerous mixed reviews.  People either seemed to love or hate it, so I wanted to wait until the hype died down a little so I wasn't influenced by either positive or negative reviews, and really able to judge it for myself.
And...I loved it!
I was definitely intrigued and the blurb doesn't give too much away.  It's a great cross between a paranormal novel and a psychological thriller, at times you don't know if Mara is really losing it or if something else is at work.  And the paranormal element doesn't really become apparent until late in the book, and as a result sets a lot up for book 2.
I love the dark vibe of this book but the higlight for me was the love interest.  The intelligent and sarcastic relationship between Mara and Noah made me laugh and was a pleasure to read, and felt very different to other YA romances.  I wasn't 100% about Noahs 'man-whore' characters, and I have a few unresolved questions about that but I'm sure these will be answered in the next book.  I also loved that both characters are somehow connected by this paranormal element (so difficult not to spoil here BUT i remain resolute!)
Also I love Mara's family dynamic, a trend in YA at the moment is the protagonists family have been killed etc etc but in this her parents and brothers are all very different and play an important part, which I found refreshing.
Overall I give this book 4/5 stars.  It wasn't perfect but there was so much that I enjoyed and the pacing was amazing, I couldn't put it down.
I can't wait to see what happens next in The Evolution of Mara Dyer, as it ends on a killer cliff-hanger.

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