Pages: 352 (189,097 total pages so far)
Genre: Young Adult/Dystopian
First of all, the cover for this book is terrible. I never would have picked it out if I didn't read a review without the cover picture in it. It looks like some horrible YA supernatural romance with wolves or something. It takes place in a grungy, dystopian society so I have no idea why she's wearing this sparkly white ball gown on the book cover.
The book starts with Juliette being locked in some sort of filthy jail. We find out that she was locked away by her parents after they discovered she was a "monster" because her touch can kill people. She's been in isolation for a couple of years, when suddenly she gets a new cellmate. A BOY cellmate. (possible spoilers ahead...) Turns out, he's just there to capture and deliver her to this creep in the Reestablishment military who wants to use her as a weapon. She falls in love with the boy who manipulated her (Adam) and they run away until they find a school for freaks just like her (end spoilers). Hm...where have I heard this plot before??
Basically, I hope they never make a movie out of this because whoever owns the rights to X-Men will sue their butts off. Juliette is pretty much Rogue. Or they could just rename the story X-Men Origins: Rogue for the movie version. It would appeal to comic geeks AND 13-year-old girls.
It was way too fluffy for me. The story was actually pretty interesting. However, the romance was front and center and in your face. You know, they're SUPER in love five minutes after they meet and I have to suffer through endless paragraphs of mush. Someone likes their metaphors a little too much, I think. It was kind of like Twilight, if Stephenie Meyer could write. I think Tahereh Mafi is a good writer if she toned down the madly in love teenager fluff a little. I don't need to read three thousand metaphors about Juliette's heart and what it feels like. The action parts of the book were really good.
My favorite character in the whole book was Adam's 10-year-old brother. I LOVED HIM. So I know Mafi can write good characters. I just wish she put a little more effort into the main characters personalities rather than their sexual urges.
I'm not sure if I'll continue with this series though. It was pretty good if I skimmed over the softcore teenage porn, so we'll see.