My initial reaction to finishing The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin was simply “Holy. Crap.” I told Michelle I meant this in a good way, and she said that was review enough for her. I have a feeling her publisher — and most of you — would rather I put together something a little more coherent. I’ll give it my best shot.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer follows the title character to a new school, following an accident that left her in a coma and killed three of her friends. Mara doesn’t really remember what happens, but as she starts having more nightmares about that night — and strange things start happening to those she wishes ill will upon — Mara begins to suspect she may be to blame. For the accident, and for recent events happening to people in her life.
Meanwhile, she’s struggling with her own feelings for reputed bad boy Noah, family drama, and settling in to a new school.
The chemistry between Mara and Noah crackles throughout The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer — and it’s this developing relationship coupled with Mara’s disturbing dreams that most keeps you turning the pages. The mystery, drama, and intrigue build upon each other, creating a book that is fast-paced and simply impossible to put down.
Unlike many books in the YA genre, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer feels much more like a mystery-thriller than it does a paranormal romance. That’s not to diminish the romantic aspects of the book (they are there, and they sizzle) — but the real strength of the book is the multi-layered mystery. The book ends on a pitch-perfect cliffhanger that will leave you wanting to either scream or throw the book across the room (or both), then have you flipping back to page one to start re-reading.
There’s so much more I wish I could talk about, but the real magic of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is how each layer of the mystery is revealed — and I just can’t bring myself to spoil that here.
All I can safely say is this: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is a heart-pounding thriller, mixed in with mystery, intrigue, and sizzling romance.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is in stores September 27th. Here is the official synopsis:
Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.