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.AudiobookPublished January 21st 2014 by Audible
Four stars: A creepy little book that confuses you.
Mara Dyer awakens in the hospital to discover that she is the lone survivor of a terrible accident that killed three of her friends. Mara for some reason was in the abandoned, condemned asylum at night with her friends when it collapsed. Since the accident, Mara is haunted by what happened, even though she has no memory of the events. Mara suffers from post traumatic stress disorder, and in an attempt to clear her head, she convinces her family to move far away. Once Mara relocates to Florida, she learns that she still hasn't escaped her past. She continues to have strange dreams and hallucinations. Is she crazy?
What I Liked:
- This book has long been in my To Be Read Pile, and I am glad I finally took the chance and dove in. This was an interesting little book that continued to mess with my head throughout. I think the cover is appropriate as I felt like I was drowning, and every time I felt like I was pushing my head above water and gaining an understanding, I was shoved back under with more confusing reveals. I liked that I was continually guessing as to what was going on with Mara. If you enjoy through provoking books that keep you guessing, you will like this one. I still am not sure what the truth is.
- I enjoyed the startling developments. At first, it appeared that Mara was suffering from hallucinations, but then other things happen, and it seems she has some type of paranormal ability. I won't go into all the details, but I was excited about these strange new developments.
- The romance was good. Slow and steady without insta love or love triangles. Noah is a conundrum as well. Even though he is introduced as the rich, bad boy, player, once I got to know him, I actually liked him. I appreciated that he continued to push to be Mara's friend, even though she was rude to him. I enjoyed that the two developed a friendship and they learned to trust one another before any type of romantic feelings were explored.
- This book features an unreliable narrator. At first, I thought I could trust Mara, but the further I read, I begin question her sanity and reliability. Is she crazy and locked up in an insane asylum or are these things really happening to her? I honestly can't decide at this point. Having a questionable narrator helps add to the suspense and makes you question everything. I liked that.
- I was surprised and pleased to find that Mara was surrounded by a strong, stable, supportive family. No absentee parents. Her brother, Daniel, especially has her back, and I loved exploring the family dynamics. Too often in YA, the family and parents are ignored or absent.
- The writing was superb. I loved the rich, detailed descriptions and the interesting story telling. A strong debut from Hodkin.
And The Not So Much:
- A huge cliffhanger that left me completely confused. I was a bit frustrated that there weren't any answers as to what was going on with Mara, and in fact, there is a bombshell at the end regarding Mara and her mental health. I am glad that I waited to read this series so I can binge read them without having to endure lengthy waits. If you detest cliffhangers, be warned, but luckily the next two books are out.
- I was upset that there wasn't any type of explanation offered to what was going on. It is a bit irritating to read an entire book and end up having more questions than answers.
- I listened to the audiobook version of this book narrated by Christy Romano. I thought she did a great job conveying emotions and providing the voice for Mara. My issue was that her narration moved too quickly. I honestly kept thinking there was something wrong with my copy, and that perhaps it was in the sped up mode, but after reading another review, I found out it wasn't just me.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer was an intriguing and interesting read. I enjoyed this creepy little tale that kept me drowning throughout as I struggled to make heads or tails of what was going on. This is a suspenseful and mysterious little read that will leave you hungering for more. Be warned there is a huge cliffhanger at the end that leaves more questions than answers, but luckily this is a good time to start since the final book is out.
I borrowed a copy of this book from the library in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.