Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi (Book Review)

Publisher: Electric Monkey
Page Count
: 448

CW: anxiety, panic attacks, transphobia, recollections of abuse, depression, mention of suicide

Restore Me is the continuation of the Shatter Me series (I once talked about it way, way back in the day and you can read that post here) and I got to read it with my very good friend Marie @Drizzle and Hurricane Books. Definitely stay on the lookout for her review in the near future!

When I first heard the announcement for the new additions to the series, I was both super excited and dreaded their release at the same time. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adored the original Shatter Me trilogy, but they were tied up nice enough for me. Obviously there was room for more to tell, but I was a little worried about whether the things to come were really necessary and afraid that they might change my feelings towards characters I love. I think Tahereh Mafi managed to truly create another plot element that made sense to the history of the characters and at least I wasn’t disappointed in that area.

I wish I could say this book was everything I had dreamed of, but that would be the overstatement of the year. It took me quite a while until I was really back in that world. Something about the writing style has changed and didn’t feel as enchanting and unique as it used to. I think that’s really a shame, because the writing style is what made the original trilogy so special to me and made me want to revisit it time and time again. Also, I felt myself being far more impatient with the characters than I used to be, annoyed at their utter lack of communication. They kept tiptoeing around each other, assuming things that sometimes weren’t even true or just plain exaggerating for … drama? I don’t even know.

As much as I just complained, it was nice to have the old gang back. Obviously, Kenji is still my most favourite person in the entire series (and I honestly don’t think that will ever change). At first, I struggled with Warner’s perspective a little bit, feeling quite detached from his narration style, but by the end, I think I often felt more with him than with Juliette. There are a lot of things that surface from his past and I just think that he was judged unfairly sometimes. Do I condone everything he did and feel like he shouldn’t suffer any repercussions? No. But the way he was brought up and plain had to survive sometimes, I just don’t think most of what he did was really news to anyone (except J apparently).

This book also introduced some new characters and I love, love, love one of them especially and am intrigued, to say the least, about the others. I don’t really want to talk about anyone by name just so you get to meet them all by yourself and can form your own opinion, but I have a weird trust for that person and hope they’ll continue to play an important role.

Overall, Restore Me was mostly an introduction of what these new books would be about. It was an incredibly fast read and interesting to see alternating chapters from Warner and Juliette’s POV. I didn’t find much of the plot surprising, but … maybe that’s just me? There was definitely A LOT happening without much happening at all at the same time. Again, it felt like a set-up for the future the majority of the time. There’s also a cruel cliffhanger, so consider yourself warned!

On a final side rant, I am really sad that the font for the paperback was changed. I do realise that they rereleased the entire series with Electric Monkey and changed the font for all the books, but why wasn’t it also available from the same publisher as the hardcover, that had the previously established font still? I will never understand certain decisions …

Fazit: 4/5 stars! Interesting continuation of one of my favourite series.

Have you read Restore Me? Do you want to? Have you read the original books in the Shatter Me series?

R.I.P. it or Ship it! Book Tag

ripit

Analee @Book Snacks is one of the best people out there and tagged me for the R.I.P. it or Ship it! Book Tag. You should go and check out her original post, because some of the couples were hilarious and others very wrong or perfect for each other. Basically you just choose some random characters, draw their names from a hat or jar or whatever you want to use to draw the names from and see if they would work as a couple. I loved the idea of this!!! The execution however was a lot different …

THIS GAME FELT RIGGED OR CURSED! I admittedly chose very, very random people that didn’t truly fit together from the beginning. I barely put any actual couples in there, I didn’t stick with one genre either and just tried to see what would come from it doing it this way. The first time around that I drew the names, it was disaster! I then thought I’d just do it again, but lo and behold, the worst couples WERE DRAWN TOGETHER AGAIN! It must be fate … horrible, terrible, unkind fate! However, without further ado, here are the results:

round1

Okay, so … this wasn’t a definite “no” at first. Theo is very smart and so is Mori. They’d probably enjoy some flirting with each other, but on the long run this could never ever work. Theo is openly charming, yet flimsy and likes to party and joke. And Mori can hold a grudge forever. She is strong, secretive and closed off. They are opposties that might attract for a little while, especially due to their shared intellect, but as I said, I can’t see a real future for them.

round2

Just nope! Julia is getting farther and farther away from her humanity in her quest for magic, but Maxon needs someone kind-hearted and real. This is such a big nope!

round3

What are the chances? I kind of dig them as a couple though. I honestly never even thought of it before, but when I read the two names next to each other, I laughed and thought “Why not?”. They probably work better as friends, but whatever!

round4

How is this supposed to work??? I can’t even picture it. Like the image won’t manifest in my head because it just doesn’t seem possible. Two worlds that would never collide! And I can say that even though Marguerite can jump through dimensions and every single world could be possible in those. That’s how little I believe in this.

round5

Ha! I LOVE IT! I am sure people will fight me on this, but it totally works for me. I love Sevro to bits, he is without a doubt my favourite character from the series and only deserves the best! And Izzy, she sure as heck can handle him! Sevro needs a tough girl and Izzy someone funny to play off. I guess Sev can be a bit gross, though I have no doubt that Izzy will teach him manners and he will hang on every word that leaves her lips.

round6

NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! Just no, no, no! I was like ABORT THIS MISSION! But that is one of the couples that just kept getting drawn together. Like WTF? I can’t ship them, even associating the names together feels like torture. I was always weirdly fond of Sebastian, so I don’t hate him, but I do hate him together with Cath. Maybe he would have fit together with twisted Mori, but not sweet and shy Cath! NEVER!!!

round7

In a weird way I see this work. Lily and Lola are both very stubborn people and when they set their mind on something that’s it! They are determined to stick with it, even if it’s a dumb decision. Also, I can totally see Lola making up for Lily’s lack of creativity and them creating a beautiful necklace for Lily’s willstones together!

round8

I don’t even have words for this. I love Emily and I love Alec but … those are worlds that weren’t supposed to collide. Alec Baewood and Emily would never be happy with each other in a million years.

round9

Hear me out before you judge me! I don’t think Magnus and Celia would really work all that great as a couple, BUT I could see this becoming an epic friendship. Celia is kind of like Tessa is some ways, at least I think so, and I can therefore see a lasting relationship. Also, she’s like a magician, so that’s similar to being a warlock … sort of … not really, but whatever! I WANT THEM TO BE FRIENDS!

round10

Whiny Quentin and badass Mustang? HELL NO! She would crush the poor sob and feed him to the fishes!


 

I TAG

EVERYONE! This tag has been swirling around for a bit now, so I have lost sight of who has done it and who hasn’t. If you think this might be fun, then go ahead and just link back here! (Maybe just think about the names you use more carefully than I did …)

A Court of Thorns and Roses Book Review

Everyone is raving about Sarah J. Maas and her brilliant books. I wanted to test my patience and wait until the series are all entirely released, but then I was at the bookstore and they didn’t have any of the books I wanted to buy. So, I ended up buying A Court of Thorns and Roses and definitely did not regret it since!

16096824Feyre is a huntress, not because she enjoys it so much but rather out of necessity to provide for her family. The forest is a dangerous place though, especially with rumours of the much hated faeries returning to the human world. When one day she encounters a wolf on her hunting grounds that’s about to attack the only prey she had seen all day, she kills it. What she didn’t know was that the wolf was a magical creature and that killing it had consequences.
Now she is given a choice: Die on the spot or leave her family forever to live out the rest of her life in the fairie kingdom.
But imprisoned in the foreign kingdom, Feyre’s feelings for her captor Tamlin slowly grow into something else and she may be the only one to help him save his world.

(For a full summary and more details on the book, just click on the cover to be redirected to Goodreads!)

ACOTAR has quite the fairy tale vibe just with actual fairies in it. The main plot resembles very much Beauty and Beast in the beginning and then there are elements thrown in from Cinderella and the Gallant Tailor and who knows what else. Since I love fairy tales of all kinds, I quite enjoyed that. Also, I always say there is nothing wrong with using familiar story elements as long as you add your own twist!

Feyre is the kind of person that’s very popular in today’s culture: badass female who does everything for her family, is responsible, smart and has a thing for archery. I liked her well enough as a main protagonist, but mostly enjoyed her musings about art and colours and light. The only thing that was a bit annoying is that she thought pretty much everything that had to do with faeries was impossible to paint. I got it the first ten times around.

Now, let’s talk about the even more important people in this book: the men! So, Tamlin is apparently super-hot, Lucien has a great sense of humour and Rhys is just really intriguing. Who wants to move to Prythian with me?
Okay no, but seriously, these guys are really easy to fall in love with. Apparently Tamlin is everyone’s favourite, but not mine. I much more enjoyed the scenes with Lucien and/or Rhys. Rhys sort of reminds me of Warner from the Shatter Me series … a bit of a psycho with a good heart. And what was that in the last chapter? I would love to see more of him in the second part, but I just hope that he doesn’t turn out to be some sort of Jacob to Tamlin being Edward Cullen. The mating process sounded a lot like imprinting to me …

So, overall it was a gripping read. It started out very calm, easing you into the world, getting to know everyone. And just when you thought everyone was happy and could live on like that forever the real action begins and there are some more gory scenes. I loved it!

Disclaimer: there are quite some sexy scenes in there! I definitely didn’t mind, but thought I should mention it.

Fazit: 4.5/5 stars! Even though there was no cliffhanger, I want the next book RIGHT NOW!

P.S. I love how at the end of the book there is a guide on how to pronounce all the places, names and kinds of faeries. Some were obvious, but for others it was quite helpful!

Taylor Swift Book Tag!

Since I don’t want to bore you with all my NaNoWriMo stuff and I have no idea what else to write about, I’ll do the Taylor Swift Book Tag for you! I  know I’m a little late to the party, but her album 1989 didn’t come out that long ago, so … deal with it!

So, let’s do this!

1. We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
(pick a book or series that you were pretty sure you were in love with, but then wanted to break up with)

I’ll have to go with the Divergent Series by Veronica Roth … loved Divergent, liked Insurgent, hated Allegiant. In case you don’t know what happens, I don’t want to spoil you. Let’s just say I wasn’t pleased for several reasons.

2. Red
(pick a book with a RED cover)

This seriously made me wonder if I should organise my bookshelve, so that the books are colour coordinated. Turns out, I don’t have many red books and I didn’t want to use Allegiant twice. But I do own the movie tie in of Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. I remember reading this within two days or so and really enjoying it. Honestly, this is the only zombie book I own.

3. The Best Day
(pick a book that makes you feel nostalgic)

I’m going to go with A Good Year by Peter Mayle. Whenever I read this book, I feel like I’m in the South of France, in a small village with the sun warming my skin. Since I actually spent a couple of months in the South of France to work there, this definitely makes me feel nostalgic.

4. Love Story
(pick a book with forbidden love)

This is far more difficult than I imagined and the only book I can think of is How I Live Now by Meg Rossoff. If you want to know more about it, you should click here, because I already wrote a post for it!

5. I Knew You Were Trouble
(pick a book with a bad character you couldn’t help but love)

Definitely Warner from the Shatter Me Series by Tahereh Mafi! Again, you can check the books out in my previous post!

6. Innocent
(pick a book that someone ruined the ending for)

This might disappoint you, but I can’t think of one single book where that happened. I’m just amazing at avoiding Spoilers it seems. Sorry.

7. Everything Has Changed
(pick a character from a book who goes through extensive character development)

Another tough one. I’m choosing Cheryl from Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I really enjoyed that book and I think that you can see how she changed throughout her journey. It is somewhat of an autobiography, so it makes sense that her character goes through some sort of change. Still haven’t seen the movie though … need to do that soon because it features Reese Witherspoon and Thomas Sodaski!

8. You Belong With Me
(pick your most anticipated book release)

Okay, this is going to sound crazy, but I love to have movie tie ins for my books. So, the book I am waiting for has been out for years, but I want to have it with the actual film cover. That book would be The Duff by Kody Keplinger. Since I have no idea how the cover is going to look like, the picture above is the regular one.

9. Forever and Always
(pick your favorite book couple)

Anna and Etienne without a doubt! If you love romance as much as I do, there is no way you’re going to get around reading the Anna and the French Kiss Series by Stephanie Perkins. I love those books!

10. Come Back, Be Here
(pick the book you would least like to lend out, for fear of missing it too much)

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I hope there is no need to explain, but I wrote about the book in a previous post as well.

 

And here are some bonus questions that were added during Katytastic‘s BookTube video for the tag!

11. Teardrops On My Guitar
(pick a book that made you cry a lot)

I cried so hard while reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. WWII is just a really emotional topic for me and I loved Zusak’s style of writing, which made it so much easier to understand and feel with the characters.

12. Shake It Off
(pick a book that you love so much, you just shake off the haters)

Are there haters for The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern? Somehow I can’t imagine it, but if there are haters out there, I’d shake them off. Love the book to bits and again wrote a post about it!

So, I hope you liked this. If so, leave a comment/like and feel free to do the tag yourself! In case you want more stuff like this, just let me know!

 

 

 

Shatter Me Series

The Shatter Me Series by Tahereh Mafi consists of three main books called Shatter Me, Unravel Me and Ignite Me, but also two companion novellas which are called Destroy Me (the POV of Warner at the end of book one) and Fracture Me (the POV of Adam at the end of book two). The novellas can be bought in one book called Unite Me. Did I confuse you enough with that? Good! Then we’ll go on with the plot of the books.

The series is about a girl called Juliette, who can’t be touched by anyone, because her touch inflicts an indescribable amount of pain and can be lethal. Of course, this means Juliette has lived her entire life in isolation, too afraid of hurting the people around her. Shunned by society, you’d think that Juliette turned out to be bitter and angry person, but she’s not. In fact, she never once fought back! And that’s what the book is about! Sure, it does involve a heck of a lot of romance and superpowers and stuff, but it is mainly about the transformation of Juliette from a whiny and crying girl to a confident woman.

This book series was nothing like I expected! It took me a little until I got into the story, but then I couldn’t stop reading. The style of writing is unusual and oh, all the things left unsaid. Things, that Juliette doesn’t even allow herself to think. The writing also changes as she gets more confident – it was beautiful!  I laughed and I was surprised, it really gripped me!

Everything that happened; I’m sometimes still so overwhelmed! After the first book, sort of everything started to collapse and I did not see it coming how much the characters would change throughout the series.  At some point, though, I really felt like I was reading this sort of dystopian version of X-Men. Juliette somewhat reminded me of Rogue and there are also people who can turn invisible and who can control things with their mind – I get that those are like standard superpowers, but still, something really reminded me of the mutants and their restistance.

In the end, I would say that Unravel Me and Ignite Me were better than Shatter Me, but of course, that’s just my opinion. I also enjoyed reading the companion novellas, although I felt as if Fracture Me revealed much more about Adam than Destroy Me did about Warner. I can already see people building teams, which I find very unnecessary for this book, but who cares. I like all the guys, but especially Warner and Kenji, because Adam seriously started to piss me off in the end.

I would have liked to read a little epilogue about what happened to the earth after the finale, but you can’t have everything. I am excited to hear that 20th Century Fox bought the film rights, before the book was even released. Let’s hope they don’t drop that one, like they did with Legend.  Did you read the series? What did you think about it? If you haven’t read it, do you think you might check it out?

UPDATE 6/19/2015

So, Tahereh Mafi just announced that after the movie didn’t happen, ABC Signature Studios now optioned the TV rights for the series. I actually think that a Shatter Me would work better on TV so I am massively excited about it! You can watch the full announcement and her fellow writer and husband Ransom Riggs talk about his book (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children) getting adapted by watching polandbananaBOOKS (aka Christine Riccio) video here.