The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Romance
Published by: Simon and Schuster
Series: The Evolution of Mara Dyer (#2) | The Retribution of Mara Dyer (#3)
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon
I first read this book at the beginning of 2014, and I can still remember the plot. That is probably the biggest compliment I could give a book, as a lot of YA plots seems to just float out of my head a month after I’ve read it.
Mara Dyer is probably one of the most interesting characters I’ve read about. I don’t think I fully understood the power she possessed at the beginning of the trilogy,. and only really appreciated her situation once I’d finished ‘The Retribution of Mara Dyer.’
Mara is struggling with psychological breakdowns because she feels responsible for the death of her best friend and ex-boyfriend. It doesn’t help that she’s hallucinating people dying, and then it actually happens in real life. At first its just a dog, and then its a teacher, some crocodiles and fish. Does she have the power to kill people with her mind?! It’s a question everyone struggles to answer.
The introduction of Noah to her life,. the mysterious and illusive bad boy with a not-so-great reputation when it comes to girls, causing Mara even more stress. She’s falling in love. She’s accidently killing people. Life is tough for teenagers. I kind of loved Noah as well. He was the Jace to Mara’s Clary, educating her and making her feel more comfortable with her abilities, especially when we discover Noah isn’t quite normal either.
The romance elements of these novel makes it hard to define the genre. I’d say the romance is paramount to Mara’s mental health but I’d be more inclined to label this book as a thriller. There’s a lot of gore, violence and general horror, which is partly why this book stuck with me the way it did. It’s so different from anything else I’ve read.
When reading this book, I felt completely absorbed in what was happening to Mara. It was like I was her. Her emotions just jump of the pages and the writing style is so relatable, it’s actually beautiful. Even though Mara was kidnapped, abused and debating whether or not she should be put in a straight jacket, I wanted to know what happened next. I was scared for what was going to happen next and I don’t think I’ve ever felt that emotionally involved in a book.
Overall, I’d give ‘The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer’ 4 stars. It was very original, a riveting debut and ended with a cliff hanger that left me desperate to read ‘The Evolution of Mara Dyer’. Just be warned of the violent content!