Book Review: Unravel Me

Title: Unravel Me
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Genre: Romance, Dystopia, Fiction

What It’s About: Inside the sub-terrain location of Omega Point, Juliette struggles to make friends and learn to control her gift. Castle, the leader of Omega Point, tells her to work with Kenji in order to learn to control her gift, and also become friendly with everyone as all the people in Omega point trust Kenji. It doesn’t exactly go according to plan, as Juliette continues to be scared, and her emotions cause her to lash out.

First, she doesn’t understand what is going on with Adam, and why he is suddenly so distant and stressed. Then Kenji takes her to the testing lab, where she thinks that Adam is being tortured, and as a result, her anger causes her to create an earthquake and damage the Omega Point. It is then that Adam—at Castle’s bidding—reveals that his powers involve cutting off other people’s powers as a way of protecting him; however, the longer he spends with Juliette, the more his body lowers its defenses thinking that she’s not a threat, and the more dangerous she becomes to him. Despite this, the two of them cannot keep their hands off each other, and Adam ends up in the hospital.

As a way to get to get Juliette to become welcomed at Omega Point, Kenji involves her on a mission with a small trusted group of individuals who are going to hit the Sector 45 storage houses to steal supplies for Omega point. During the mission, Juliette sees Warner playing and looking after a puppy, which makes he realize that there’s a different side to him. She would have gotten caught if not for Kenji, who realized that she hadn’t followed him, and in the nick of time, turns her invisible. After the mission, they return to base, and within a very short period of time, four of the Omega Point members get kidnapped by Warner’s men while patrolling the area.

Soon, an invitation arrives from the Supreme Commander of Sector 45, Warner’s father, asking Juliette to meet him at a house in the compound. Juliette, Kenji and Adam make a plan, in which Juliette goes into the home alone, but the boys will be there for backup. Juliette meets with the Supreme Commander, whose last name is Anderson, and he tells her that he was curious to meet her because of Warner, who loves her. He then calls Warner in and tells him to shoot her, but Warner hesitates, so Anderson tries to kill her instead. At that point Juliette creates another earthquake out of fear, knocks down Anderson, and shoots him in both legs. At that point Kenji bursts in, knocks out Warner, and Adam also shows up after finding two of the Omega Point members. It’s only then that Adam takes a look at Anderson, and recognizes him as his father, who he thought was dead. Kenji covers for Juliette and tells Adam that he was the one who shot Anderson.

They take Warner hostage to Omega Point, and heal him. Castle then tries to talk to Warner, but Warner only wants to talk to Juliette. So Juliette goes to meet with him in his room, and slowly they get closer. She learns more about Warner’s past—the scars and tattoo on his back—but does not find the answers regarding the whereabouts of the two missing Omega Point members. Warner at one point tells Castle that he can also touch Juliette without repercussions, which also creates tensions with Adam for Juliette. Castle realizes that Warner has some kind of powers, but they need to test for it, and because of that he offers Warner his freedom if he becomes part of Omega Point. After taking some time to think about it, Warner takes the offer, and is granted the freedom to walk around Omega Point, angering many of the other members there because of how cruel he and his soldiers have been to people. Adam leaves the room, and Juliette follows him to talk, except their talk is interrupted by Warner. Adam and Warner get into a heated argument, with Juliette in between them to try to stop them. Kenji then intervenes, something happens in a split second between Warner and Juliette that results in Kenji ending up in pain and having to be taken to the hospital.

Guilt-ridden, Juliette finds solace in the dark halls of Omega Point with Warner, who tells her that it’s not her fault. He reveals that he is able to sense other people’s energy, and re-route it, so when she touched him to stop them from jumping onto each other, he got all of her built up energy running through him like a current, and then released it on Kenji. He shows her again how it works. They get interrupted by Adam, and Juliette leaves with him to check on Kenji, who looks near death. Castle sends them to their rooms, and Juliette worries over the upcoming battle in the quietness of her room, when Warner arrives, and things get really heated for the two of them. Juliette forgets everything when she is with him, until Warner asks her to call him Aaron, his real name, and she remembers Adam. As a result of the rejection, Warner leaves the room, and Omega Point.

The next morning, the whole Great Hall is outraged at the fact that Warner ran off, but they forge ahead to battle, leaving only Adam and Juliette alone in the hall. Kenji shows up, and claims that he wants to fight even in his weakened state. The three of them leave together, and save 26 people from being massacred by the soldiers. They take them back to the compounds to safety, and then head to battle. As soon as they get into the fight, they are separated, and Juliette is taken down. She manages to shatter the hand of the soldier that has tried to choke her, and escapes, but then is caught by three other soldiers, and tied down. They transport her to the nice-looking house that she had seen during her trip to meet with Anderson the first time. There, Anderson has her sent to a room, and someone takes care of her by washing her and changing her.

When Juliette wakes up, she makes her way downstairs, where she finds Anderson. They talk, with Anderson revealing things about Warner’s past and how he got into the post in charge of Sector 45. Warner shows up, and Anderson tells her that he was shocked at how well Warner was cleaned up while being held hostage, so he also kidnapped the twins in order to eventually force them to heal him. Then, Anderson shoots her in the heart in front of Warner in order to make her pay for shooting him in the legs. Juliette thinks that she is dying, and Warner manages to find the healing Twins, but they’re too afraid to touch Juliette to heal her because of what she does. Warner then convinces them to channel their magic through him so that he can help them heal Juliette. When Juliette finally wakes up, she is ready to fight back in a different way.

My Verdict: I struggle with the stream of consciousness written style of this book, because it’s so hard to follow it. On top of that, there’s Juliette and her constant repetition of words, like she’s stuttering in her thoughts. It’s quite annoying, to be honest, and as a result I actually put this book down for 1-2 weeks. Now, I’m not a person who starts a book without finishing it unless it’s really, really bad. Since the storyline is entertaining and I’m interested in Juliette’s development, I went back to finish the book. It was really hard to get into it again, but I managed.

That aside, I really am sad to see how Adam’s and Juliette’s relationship has deteriorated, though I am curious to see how Warner’s relationship with Juliette will blossom and change. Who will Juliette ultimately choose? Will she even have a choice? In addition, the character development has been slowly peeling back the onions on Warner, and even Adam, though it was in a very expected way. Like seriously, it wasn’t that difficult to figure out that they had to be related if they both could touch Juliette. James, the youngest of the three, probably can touch Juliette as well, for all we know.

Overall, the storyline is entertaining, so that’s primarily why I want to keep reading the book, and getting to understand the characters better, though I struggle with Juliette’s strange stream of consciousness. For the written style, this book would normally not be on my to-read list again.

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