My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Publication Date: September 27th 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance, High School, Death
Mara Dyer believes life can’t 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 strangely unharmed. There is.
She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love. She’s wrong.
What a strange book.
So strange in fact that I don’t know what to make of Mara Dyer.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is peculiar. It’s a paranormal story with scenes that border on illogical and highly infused with sometimes cringe-worthy, sometimes heart-stopping romance.
It’s also thrilling and hard to put down. I kept my lights on, as recommended by Rachel Hawkins, and let me tell you that you’ll want to do that, too.
It won’t scare you. But it will raise goose bumps on your arms and legs and make you check over your shoulders every five minutes to make sure no one is watching you.
The horror is well put in the plot. It comes out during unexpected moments and always takes the reader by surprise. There isn’t much of it, but the reader is constantly on the edge of his seat, because he knows it will appear at some point.
Mara Dyer is a snarky, if not judgmental and headstrong, heroine. But she has a soft side. Noah on the other side is calm and seems to have an answer to everything. He and Mara are two strong characters and, though I hate to admit it because the romance irked me most of the time, they do make a perfect match.
It’s definitely a character-driven story. The plot is there, and honestly I always wanted to know what would happen, but there is not much description. Characters rule the story, not the world-building or details or anything else. They make the intrigue. Without them, the story would have no meaning.
There are some things I would change about it, if given the chance to: I’d cut on the romance, the unnecessary blah blah and drama – hell, that Spanish teacher is a demon – and I’d pour more horror scenes and craziness inside it.
Because that’s what makes it thrilling.
I can’t wait to see what happens next.