Title: Ignite Me (Shatter Me #3)
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Publication Date: February 4, 2014
Summary: 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.”
With Omega Point destroyed, Juliette doesn’t know if the rebels, her friends, or even Adam are alive. But that won’t keep her from trying to take down The Reestablishment once and for all. Now she must rely on Warner, the handsome commander of Sector 45. The one person she never thought she could trust. The same person who saved her life. He promises to help Juliette master her powers and save their dying world . . . but that’s not all he wants with her.
The Shatter Me series is perfect for fans who crave action-packed young adult novels with tantalizing romance like Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and Legend by Marie Lu. Tahereh Mafi has created a captivating and original story that combines 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.” Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and satisfying end.
First of all, I’d like to start this off by apologizing. I’m sorry to everyone that thinks this book is amazing and gave it 5/5 stars. I apologize because I just can’t. I look on Goodreads and all I see is five star reviews and raves about this amazing book and this amazing series and this amazing author, and I just don’t get it.
I have so many problems with everything in these books. I don’t particularly like the characters, the writing style that makes me feel annoyed and like the author is trying too hard, and I definitely don’t like the tiny bit of plot we actually get. I’m going to try very hard to not rant or bash on this book, but I can’t just ignore how bad I find it. Also, this review will have some spoilers.
To start with, Juliette. I don’t particularly have a problem with Juliette, she is an effective enough female protagonist and she gets the job done. And in this book, she finally steps it up and starts controlling her powers and wanting to take down the bad guys and being strong with her girl power. But I just don’t see where it came from. In the last book, she was just a huge whiny, self centered mess, who didn’t want to try to do a single thing. Suddenly, after being almost killed, she wakes up as a new confident leader and all of her worries and concerns and emotional issues are magically gone. She explains is as almost dying and realizing she wanted to know what freedom felt like, but I don’t really see that transition happen. And it was a severe transformation. 35 pages in and this is what she thinks:
“I’ve always known, deep down, who should be leading this resistance. I’ve felt it quietly for some time now, always too scared to bring the words to my lips. Someone who’s got nothing left to lose and everything to gain. Someone no longer afraid of anyone.
Not Castle. Not Kenji. Not Adam. Not even Warner.
It should be me.”
I’m sorry, but that legitimately made me angry. She did absolutely nothing to help them in the last book. She didn’t care about them or the rebellion or anything except crying about how Adam couldn’t touch her. What gives her the right to even think she is capable of leading anything? And how does she expect to save them all if she spends all her time swooning over Warner?
Speaking of Warner, let’s talk about that huge and unexpected plot twist. That was heavy sarcasm, if you couldn’t tell. Of course, OF COURSE, Warner was secretly a good guy the whole time and now we get a huge pile of excuses and misunderstandings and ulterior motives that suddenly paint him in a whole new light.
“”That was an elaborate scheme I designed entirely for my father’s benefit,” Warner says.”
“”I am guilty,” he says, “of forcing you to undergo such a cruel simulation. I accept the fault for that, and I’ve already apologized for my actions. I meant only to push you into finally reacting, and I knew that sort of re-creation would quickly trigger something inside of you. But good God, love”- he shakes his head- “you must have an absurdly low opinion of me if think I would steal someone’s child just to watch you torture it.””
“”I made a spectacle of your display with Jenkins because I wanted them to see that you were a formidable opponent- one they’d do well to stay away from. I was trying to protect you.””
“Seamus Fletcher,” Warner says calmly, staring into his open palms, “was a drunken bastard who was beating his wife and children.””
We now have new and approved Warner that Juliette can feel guilt free for loving. A soft, caring Warner who did everything out of the goodness of his heart. I mean, we can all forget about how he emotionally abused her all this time right? How he destroyed her, terrified her, made he do things that nearly killed her inside to have to do? That means nothing now that we know none of it was intentionally supposed to upset her. After all, he had his reasons. I’m sorry, but what a load of shit. This doesn’t make him a good person, it basically makes him just as crazy as Juliette always thought he was. Yes, it’s sad that he had such a horrible and abusive childhood and is clearly messed up because of it. But he still obviously makes his own decisions and is smart and clear headed. He did all of this on purpose. And she conveniently forgives him for everything and starts sucking face with him once his true motives are revealed. Absolutely ridiculous.
I don’t even want to talk about Adam. He was an asshole who clearly has control issues and can’t even remotely handle rejection. I felt embarrassed by how in denial he was. There is no forgiving the things her said to Juliette and now I officially hate everyone in these books. Except for Kenji, he’s the only cool guy that apparently has any sort of conscience or morals. Who, by the way, Adam tried to kill, or at least seriously hurt. What a stellar guy.
“”We never broke up!” Adam shouts.
“Of course you did,” Kenji snaps back. “Every single person at Point heard your melodramatic ass in the freaking tunnels. We all know you broke up. So stop fighting it.”
“That didn’t count as a breakup,” Adam says, his voice rough. “We still loved each other-“
Also, kind of off topic, but did anyone else find the sexy scenes a little uncomfortable? Like, suddenly Warner’s going down and getting all mouthsy with her lady bits or something. I’m not even really sure what was happening, it was rather unclear. Lots of moans and touching and nudie-ness. I honestly though the author was just going to go for it and write a full on sex scene. Which would have literally been torture with the overly descriptive and dramatic way that she writes. Being spared that horror is just proof that my life doesn’t absolutely suck.
Anyways, the plot was disappointing. I swear, nothing happens in these books. The first one was okay, the second one was bad with Juliette doing absolutely nothing, but this one was the worst. It was the grand conclusion and nothing even happened. Literally, the whole thing was that they regroup and train to take down Andersen and Juliette is going to rule the world now, with warm, fuzzy Warner standing faithfully by her side. But her training is such a tiny fraction of the book, it doesn’t even deserve to be mentioned. Then, when they finally start gathering up soldiers and getting their plan going, it’s literally like the last 60 pages of the book. The huge climax, the thing we’ve been waiting for the whole book, for her to use her powers and fight soldiers and sneak in to kill Andersen and their huge face off, is about 25 pages. 25 pages. Just let that sink in. Andersen has some secret weapon that Juliette just stands up against, kills Andersen in two seconds, saves everyone, the goes back to base and announces she is the new leader. How anticlimactic and sad.
The summary says, “Now this final book brings the series to a shocking and satisfying end.” There was not a single thing shocking or satisfying about this book. The whole thing was predictable and disappointing. After the last book, I had high hopes of this one stepping up and at least giving us a good ending. Apparently, that was too much to hope for.