Em: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin – REVIEW

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Release Date: September 27th, 2011
Simon & Schuster, 452 Pages
Sub-genre: Supernatural
Age Group: Young Adult
Series: Mara Dyer #1

Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can 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 mysteriously unharmed.

There is.

She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.

She’s wrong.

It took me a while to pick this book up but I can say that I don’t regret it at all. I usually don’t re-read books, but this is definitely going to be the first thing I do read over again. Also, and I don’t say this lightly, this book is in my top 5 favorite books I have ever read.

Now that I have gushed about that, let’s get down to the big reasons I loved this book. The setting was definitely great – Florida. Since we are just now getting out of the sweltering heat of summer here in North Carolina, I could almost feel the humid, smothering Florida heat that Hodkin described in some of the outdoor scenes. Also, I am a huge animal lover and have personally rescued a starving, abused pit bull (mix) so the part about Noah and Mara saving Mabel was something that truly endeared the author and the characters to me.

When I first started reading, I can’t say that it took me long to become completely absorbed. In fact, I started this book at 11 in the morning and finished it around 10 that night – I could not put it down! I wasn’t even sure of the subgenre of the book when I started reading, so it was an unexpected thrill ride of mystery and some paranormal/supernatural. I’m not sure yet, but I am utterly relieved that there will be another book in the future. I think that between the trauma of Mara’s accident, the mystery that shrouds what really happened, her & Noah’s secrets, the high school drama, and her tumultuous family life, Mara Dyer has her work cut out for her.

Of course I love the teen angst that comes with YA literature, but lately I have been reading a lot of paranormal/supernatural, but I would personally categorize this novel as a mystery. The letter at the very beginning of the book set the tone and helped set up the roller coaster plot and mysterious circumstances. For the record, Sash has called dibs on Noah Shaw, but he has been added to my list of YA’s bad boys that we all love to crush on. So, who IS Mara Dyer? I am still waiting to find out and I LOVE the fact that I am hanging on and wanting more of the characters and world that Hodkin has created for this incredible book.

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