Thursday, February 6, 2014

Review: Ignite Me by Taherah Mafi

Review: Ignite Me by Taherah Mafi
Release date: February 4th, 2014
Publisher: HarperCollins
Series: #3 in the Shatter Me series
Source: purchased
Rating: An enormously emotionally satisfying series ender, despite a few technical flaws. I want to hug this book.


The heart-stopping conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, which Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, called "a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love"

Juliette now knows she may be the only one who can stop the Reestablishment. But to take them down, she'll need the help of the one person she never thought she could trust: Warner. And as they work together, Juliette will discover that everything she thought she knew-about Warner, her abilities, and even Adam-was wrong.

In Shatter Me, Tahereh Mafi created a captivating and original story that combined the best of dystopian and paranormal and was praised by Publishers Weekly as "a gripping read from an author who's not afraid to take risks." The sequel, Unravel Me, blew readers away with heart-racing twists and turns, and New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia said it was "dangerous, sexy, romantic, and intense." Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and climactic end.

This review contains spoilers for Shatter Me and Unravel Me, books 1 and 2 in the series.

This book is a TOUGHIE to review. So much of it hinges on MEGA SPOILERS that I'm not entirely sure what to say. Ignite Me begins right where Unravel Me left off, which Juliette freshly healed by Warner after Anderson shot her in the chest and with Omega Point and everyone in it blown to smithereens. Basically, happy times.

The thing about this book is that it has no plot. Juliette, Warner, Kenji, Adam, and company make a PLAN. There are secrets revealed, and I changed my mind drastically about both of the love interests. Seriously, Mafi made me think completely differently than I did before. (Or did she? YOU'LL HAVE TO READ TO FIND OUT.) There are sexytimes, and Juliette overdoses on awesome pills and grows a spine of steel and bitchslaps the shit out of all the people who stand in her way. if you're looking for an installment with action or world-building, your out of luck. If you're looking for feels, emotional growth, emotional pain, broken hearts, mended hearts, and sexytimes, then you are in luck.

Especially if you are looking for sexytimes, because holy crapola. Taherah. Girl.

There is no "fade to black" here, ladies and gentlemen. There are... I mean, they're completely.. wait, words...

The heart of this book is Juliette's growth. Her transformation from a timid, broken girl in a cage that is mostly self-imposed to a strong superhero who won't take none of yo shit. Basically, Juliette becomes the honey badger, and it's brilliant to see. There are no strikeouts in this book. The language is more direct, less rambly, less metaphorical. Juliette is strong and vocal and in control of herself and the situation. She is FUNNY. Perhaps this change was a bit abrupt, but I was so HAPPY to see kick ass Juliette that I didn't even care. I could still see where it came from, and which reveals and character changes (vague!) inspired it.

Kenji. Kenji. You know, I loved Kenji before, for being stuffed full of personality, for being the comic relief, for being Kenji. I didn't know it was possible for me to love him even more, and yet Mafi accomplished that. He and Juliette have a male-female platonic friendship to rival that of Aria and Roar. I wishhhh he'd had a bit more of a storyline of his own, but I guess his awesomeness is a pretty good storyline. I call for a Kenji spinoff series. Kenji Me. Let's make this happen, world.

Now. Let's talk boys.

I can't talk boys!!! This is obviously where all the spoilers lurk and I don't want to spoil anybody.
Going into Shatter Me, I was unhealthily obsessed with firmly on Team Warner, and I thought Adam was a nice guy who could end up being good for Juliette. Well, Mafi decides to screw with everything you thought you knew about the boys in this series. She reveals entirely different facets of their personality, and I will say, by what happens in this book, that I'm fully satisfied with the direction she went in. Both boys go through a lot in this book, and Juliette learns so much about each. More important, she learns about herself, and then about herself in relation to them.

Like I said, this book hit it out of the park when it came to my heart (that sounds like a really terrible country song). I was satisfied on every emotional level, and gave a happy, sad sigh upon finishing. But this book isn't perfect, since no book is. The plot is mostly planning and preparing for a big THING at the end, and then the big thing happens really quickly and then just like that it's over. I love the place all the characters go to, but I wish more have been done with the journey and the execution. The worldbuilding is quite thin and probably not plausible, but you know what? My feels. The characters. This is a rare instance where I really don't care, because I loved everything else about the book so fiercely.

And now, quotes, because there was so much I couldn't talk about!

 My eyes are filling fast with tears...I want to laugh because all I can think is how horrible and beautiful it is, that our eyes blur the truth when we can't bear to see it.

I am no longer afraid of fear, and I will not let it rule me.
Fear will learn to fear me.

"You're like a freaking beast," (Kenji) says. Then adds, "I mean, you know--like, a cute beast. A little beast that tears shit up and breaks the earth and sucks the life out of people."

And we are quotation marks, inverted and upside down, clinging to one another at the end of this life sentence. Trapped by lives we did not choose.

It's the kind of kiss that inspires stars to climb into the sky and light up the world.

I taste something cold and hard in my mouth and spit it into my hand. It looks like a broken, mangled piece of metal. Like it was too flimsy to stand against me.
Smart little bullet, I think.


  1. I AGREE WITH ALL OF THIS OF COURSE. I've been staring at a blank page, trying to review this without spoilers, but it's hard because all I want to do is write an ode to a certain character and shout their name from rooftops.

    I do wish there had been more plot/action and the ending hadn't been rushed through so quickly but oh man who cares because all of the feels.

    Ahhhhhhh brb while I go read all my bookmarked passages for the billionth time.

    PS: KENJI IS THE BEST. He needs his own book.

  2. I haven't written my review because I'm not sure how to review the book without some form of spoilers or another... I loved Juliette in this book, she grew so much!! Damn girl, she kicked arse! Also, I think I'm still fanning myself after certain parts of the book!

    And yeah, Kenji Me!! Kenji need his own novella, if not book!, at the very least!

  3. Argh. I've DNFed Shatter Me, TWICE. And I read it the second time just to understand what everyone saw in the book. And now you make me want to read it again, possibly because of that Tyra Banks gif, lalala.

  4. LOL this review killed it for me and was so spot on. I for one LOVED this series ending. It was perfect. It showed everyone's true colors and really tied up well a bunch of loose ends. Yah the battle scene was a bit rushed and was all of ten pages, and if this had been any other book I would have been the first one to complain but somehow THAT STILL WORKED. I definitely blushed A LOT during chapter fifty-five and after and died from laughter every time Kenji opened his mouth. (and yes Tahereh should make a novella called Kenji Me, that's perfect)
    I already wrote my review but I've decided to post it two weeks from now or so after everyone's read the book so I can include spoilers in my post (it'll still have a spoiler warning though) because I can't fathom NOT talking about a certain someone.
    Great review :)
    Lily @ Lilysbookblog

  5. Haha, I love this review. Very accurate towards the book. I had a few issues that made it a bit less stellar for me mostly wanting MORE. I could have used many more pages devoted to the rebellion and action-y parts. I love Mafi's ability to write a swoony scene. So good! So happy you loved this series ender :-)

  6. The abrupt change of Juliette's character was surprising but I was GLAD, because no more insecurities and crossed words and feeling unworthy and all that shiz. YAY JULIETTE.
    And Kenji! OMG He's like, the best! He deserves all the hugs that every female population can give him for being a superawesome bestfriend, or being, in general.
    I thought the ending/resolution was a bit rushed and everything happened too easily, though, but I definitely had no complain with how the way it ended! Ignite Me is such a satisfying series-ender, but I won't mind if there's ever gonna be a spin-off or something like that from their world! :-D

  7. OHMAHGAWD MOST ACCURATE REVIEW EVER. I think you just pretty much touched up on all of my thoughts, so kudos for being such a mind reader! Anyway, I definitely wished the ending could have lasted for a bit longer because really, was that it? I thought maybe the book could have cut off a small portion of the pages from the planning and allotted it instead to the execution. But apart from that, I really loved the writing style here, though she DID deviate from the usual strikethroughs and run-on sentences, and I loved it. I LOVED KENJI! And I am sooooo happy with her choices, and the way Juliette grew as a character. So yeah, happy thumbs up for the book and this review! :D

  8. Pretty much ditto your entire review.

    It was about time Juliette became her own person!

    And here's to Tahereh for causing me to fan my face while reading. WHEW.

  9. You've made me even MORE insane and psyched for this book. I have a YEARNING for it and I just. Gah. I can't wait to see all Juliette's growth and the sexy times. Plus I love you for not spoiling!

  10. I'm really nervous about reading IGNITE ME. I have no idea to expect (well, except for one thing, perhaps), but I'm looking forward to see how Tahereh wraps it all up. I do love that Kenji gets a bigger role though because I LOVE HIM.


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