My rating: 4 of 5 stars (to be more accruate a 3.5)
Pub. Date: September 27 2011
Short Sweet Synopsis: Mara Dyer is trying to restart her life in Florida after being the only survivor of an accident that took the lives of her friends. Mara struggles to deal with the loss of her friends and with her inability to remember what happened. Mara wants to remember, but will remembering help her get over her PTSD or will it just make her worse? If her personal struggles aren't enough then wait until Mara meets the student body and teachers of the private school she now attends. Luckily there is a hansom, charming British bloke who will try to charm the literal pants off her.
Sorry, that synopsis was rather long and was probably more confusing than sweet, but there is just a ton going on in this book! I have mixed feeling for The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer to the point where I struggled with giving it a star rating. I spent hours debating on a rating, this usually takes me 5 seconds to decide! If I could give it a 3.5 I would, but I decided to give the book a 4 because I did really enjoy reading it, even if I rolled my eyes sometimes.
I know I really like a book if I stay up way too late reading, do chores around the apartment willingly so that I can listen to the audio book, and/or spend my whole day off reading it. I did all these things while reading/listening to The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. If I could have physically stayed awake to read the book in one sitting I would have.
At the same time, I found myself frustrated at the characters of the book. Mara spent ample time making some awful decisions and often found herself being "saved" by our rich, hansom, charming, brilliant leading man, Noah. This may sound familiar if you've read a certain bestseller featuring sparkling vampires, or any popular YA paranormal book that features a bad boy with a heart of gold. Noah is even classified as a heartbreaker and at one point in the book ORDERS for Mara at a restaurant, YUCK! This should make me automatically hate his, but Michelle Hodkin was able to make Noah so unbelievably charming that he won my heart. Seriously, I really tried to dislike him, but he had such a great sense of humor I couldn't do it. Even Mara sometimes made me want to punch her in the face, but she was so spunky and had been through so much trauma that I couldn't help but root for her.
I could spend all day complaining about he Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (like what happened to Mara's only friend, Jamie?!?! He seriously disappeared about 2/3 of the way through the book! I know there was a reason, but I felt cheated by his lack of presence!), but in the end I enjoyed the book so much I am planning on reading the sequel. I enjoyed reading the book, even with it's issues, and want to know what happens! The ending of the book was on a major cliffhanger and I NEED to know more.
To wrap things up, I REALLY enjoyed The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. I enjoyed the overall story, even if there were same major issues with it's development. I am a bit horrified that the cornylicious romance didn't spoil the book for me, but Michelle Hodkin was able to make it work. When all is said and done, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is not a great literary work, but it is definitely a book that had me hooked from start to finish. I thought the audio book was well done, but I wonder if hearing Noah's lines with an accent is what did me in. I am a sucker for a British accent.