Sunday 4 March 2012

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

From 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.


I finally managed to get my hands on a copy of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer! Having heard so much about the book, particularly a certain British hottie called Noah Shaw, I was very excited to read it! In many ways, it lived up to the hype. For one, the writing was excellent. The sharpness, eeriness and the intensity of certain scenes were so clearly a result of Michelle Hodkin’s way with words and utility of words.

Take these lines:
Squawking pierced the funeral’s hushed atmosphere as hundreds of black birds flew overhead in a rush of beating wings. They settled on a cluster of leafless trees that overlooked the parking lot. Even the trees were wearing black.

I faced my brother. “Didn’t you park under those crows?”

He nodded, and started walking to his car.

“Fabulous,” I said as I followed him. “Now we’re going to dodge crap from the whole flock.”


I stopped. “What?”

Daniel turned around. “It’s called a murder of crows. Not a flock.(…).”

It gave me the chills, it really did.

Another amazing thing about the book was how so much of what I got out of it was unexpected! From the beginning, I was unclear about what the book was about and till the climax, there was no real way of knowing what exactly was going on. Was it Mara’s PTSD that was the cause of most of the unexplainable events? Or was it something spookier? From the prologue till the extremely chilling climax and ending, the way things were unveiled had me open mouthed.

Even with the characters… I loved Mara’s family. I instantly warmed up to her brothers, Joseph and Daniel. It was nice to see her parents hang around for the most part of the book. But with the main character, Mara Dyer (which is not her real name), I constantly learned, unlearned and relearned things about her. I found it hard to form a coherent picture of who she really was. Given the nature of the plot, this really works!

And Noah… Noah, Noah, Noah. Noah Shaw is the guy Mara falls for and he really is a YA God! He's rich, speaks six languages, is a bit of a bad boy and at the core of it all, he has his own issues, he cares and he TIES MARA'S SHOELACES! But halfway through the book, way after Noah’s picture perfect date with Mara, I thought, Wait, this is so clichéd! The romance is so clichéd! Noah is such a clichéd bad boy. Don’t even get me started with Mara’s best friend.

But here’s the thing, with the amazing writing… dialogue that warrants highlighting so that you can read it over and over again… does it matter if it’s fundamentally clichéd? It almost doesn’t. Michelle Hodkin’s writing makes every action, every stare, glance and twist in the plot so fluid and so beautiful. While at its core, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer does nothing that other paranormal romances haven’t… It is written in a way that makes it suspenseful and addictive.

If you haven’t read The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer yet… I really think you should! I did not find it groundbreaking but it was extremely well written and hooked me in easily. And I need to read the sequel now! The ending was like a series of cliffhangers, one after the other- I need more of Mara, more Noah and I need to know what happens next!

My tongue warred with my mind. "Today," I whispered.
Noah stood slowly, his body skimming mine as he rose. "Today. Tonight. Tomorrow. Forever."
Noah's eyes held mine. His stare was infinite. "I was made for you, Mara."

Publication date: 27th September, 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Source: Bought

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars


  1. I absolutely LOVE this review!! <3 You're SO right, Ajoop! Yes, this book may be a little bit cliched but it was so good that I really didn't care about that! It's kind of hard for YA authors to write a novel that doesn't include at least one minor cliche so sometimes, when it's written perfectly, it's all okay. :) Besides, Noah may have been a bad boy but he was a very sweet bad boy who -- like you said -- tied her shoes. I adored him! <3

    Absolutely amazing review, Ajoop! I'm so so so intensely pumped up for the sequel too after that cliffhanger -- I just know it's going to be amazing! :)

  2. I own this on my nook..planned to read it in Feb..and failed..trying to read it this month for tbr challenge..LOL Great review!

  3. Pooja, I wanted to read this so bad when it came out then it didn't happen, I have heard some spectacular things and then some not so great, I loved the section you clipped. I still need to find time to read this one. I hate to think the romance is cliched though :(

  4. @Mimi I KNOW. I cannot wait for the sequel! I am waiting tosee how it all plays out xD

    @kimba88 You must read it asap! I'm sure you'll love it... parts of it, at the LEAST xD

    @Heidi Haha you should definitely make time for this one! The romance is a little cliched but it's written so well, you probably won't mind :) In fact, I doubt you'll even notice xD

  5. Yeah this book wasn't groundbreaking considering the hype but it was pretty good. Great review!

  6. Thanks for stopping by. :) Yeah, definitely not groundbreaking as much but the writing was so wow!


HI. Thanks for reading! Feel free to comment. :)