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The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer 1) [Paperback]

Michelle Hodkin
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

1 Mar 2012 Mara Dyer 1
Mara Dyer doesn't think life can get any stranger. She wakes from a coma in hospital with no memory of how she got there or of the bizarre accident that caused the deaths of her best friends and her boyfriend, yet left her mysteriously unharmed. The doctors suggest that starting over in a new city, a new school, would be good for her and just to let the memories gradually come back on their own. But Mara's new start is anything but comforting. She sees the faces of her dead friends everywhere, and when she suddenly begins to see other people's deaths right before they happen, Mara wonders whether she's going crazy! And if dealing with all this wasn't enough, Noah Shaw, the most beautiful boy she has ever seen can't seem to leave her alone...but as her life unravels around her, Mara can't help but wonder if Noah has another agenda altogether...

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The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer 1) + The Evolution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer 2) + Shatter Me
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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books (1 Mar 2012)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 085707363X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857073631
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An eerily enchanting story 14 Mar 2012
Format:Paperback
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer had a huge amount of build up and hype prior to publishing and one of the curses of these `hype - books' is that you're immediately waiting for it to falter. But fortunately, I can't say that it did.

One of my favourite things about the book was Mara's narrative style. If you're going to be stuck inside someone's head for four hundred pages they have to keep you entertained - Mara didn't disappoint in that department; throughout the book there is an abundance of one liners and witty repartee.

Apart from a rough outline I didn't know what to expect with this book as far as plot was concerned; it was definitely suspenseful and had many creepy scenes, especially in the first half of the book where Mara is still grappling with wondering whether she is insane. All of which made the story incredibly gripping. I loved how; mainly to begin with, as a reader you're just as confused as Mara, when it comes to her sanity.

The negatives? Well I was initially very annoyed by the (very common mistake in YA) use of the term `British accent' when Mara was describing Noah Shaw, the smouldering and mysterious love interest of the story. But Hallelujah Noah corrects Mara and I couldn't help do my happy dance at Michelle Hodkin for knowing the difference - She receives a big thumbs up just for that! But on a more serious note, the only fault I could find was that as the story progressed the strange occurrences lessened - I know this would have made the plot crowded but when something bad did happen it's description wasn't as scary or hard hitting as it was earlier in the book, although this was mainly because Mara was beginning to understand what was truly going on.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best YA of 2012 so far. 20 Mar 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Mara awakes in a hospital to her parent's concerned faces, and asking what she can remember about the accident. But Mara can remember nothing. Can't remember going to an abandoned building in the middle of the night with her friends. Can't remember what happened to Claire or Jude. But worst, can't remember what happened to Rachel. The only person who is alive to tell the tale of what happened that night is Mara. And her mind won't release the memory.

When Mara starts having blackouts and out of control PTSD, her parents talk about institutionalisation...the last thing Mara wants. And so she convinces them that a change of scenery would do her the world of good. She says goodbye to the home she has known all her life to relocate to Florida.

Mara doesn't get off to a smooth start at her new school. Somehow without even meaning to, she put herself on the radar of the queen bee...and Noah Shaw. The most beautiful boy Mara has ever seen.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer was written in dreamy prose. It is one of those rare books that it feels like your best friend is sat beside you, telling you all about this thing that happened to her. You weren't reading a book. You were being told a story. Mara's voice was realistic and sympathetic and I couldn't get it out of my head for a long time after finishing it.

The story was very original, the romance...swoooon...It has been a long time since I read a romance so realistic and believable. And while it was a very fall-hard-and-fall-fast type romance, it was one that didn't feel at all fake or rushed. It felt like diving off the high board. Free and exhilarating.

The support and concern Mara receives from her family was extremely well written.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Book Angel Emma VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Looking back at this book I wish I had delayed reading it a little as I think all the hype that surrounded it adversely affected my enjoyment of it. I'm not really sure what I was expecting to be completely honest with you but I do feel as if I am borderline with this book and hence struggling with the review. I do intend on reading the second book The Evolution of Mara Dyer in order to follow the direction the story takes and uncover the enormous plot twist *Zips Lips*

To be honest I don't think I completely gelled with Mara; she is a seriously whacked out little chickie BUT who the heck wouldn't be with all that surrounds her. Her sarcastic sense of humor did endear her to me. The whole point of the story is to understand Mara and for me I felt as if I had barely scraped the surface and I think this contributed to making me feel frustrated with the flow of the plot. A lot of the narrative is spent inside Mara's head which only provide a narrow and often unreliable viewpoint. I felt as if I desperately needed to see the wider picture in order to gain clarity.

What really stood out in this book was the romantic element provided by the utter swoonalicious Noah Shaw. He is seriously drool worthy, and definitely made the book for me. The way he is with Mara is heart warming, providing much needed hope and optimism.

So while I feel decidedly indifferent to most of the book I adored Noah and shall continue to read the series and hope I can bond with Mara.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Loved It!! 18 Aug 2014
By Aoibh
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
4 Stars!

Summary:
Mara Dyer loses her best friend, boyfriend and his sister all in the one night; out late exploring an abandoned building when it all collapses and only Mara escapes alive. Her family uproot and move away to give Mara a fresh start away from all of her tainted memories.

Suffering with PTSD and dealing with hallucinations and nightmares, Mara slowly regains memory of the dreadful night, piece by piece. She also faces the traumas that are associated with starting at a new school; automatically sticking out without a uniform and then the "Queen Bee", Anna, targets her from the beginning and makes life worse for her.

Noah Shaw enters Mara's life and she can't help but fall under his spell. He is more than just a love interest for her however, as she soon realises he has more in common with her than she originally suspected. Mara has the ability to kill people with her mind, and Noah helps her with her journey in discovering her power and dealing with her daily flashbacks and fears.

My Thoughts:
This was a book I had been wanting to read for a good 2 years before I got the chance to. The blurb published doesn't really give much of the story away, but still the mystery suggested really drew me in;

"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."

I'll start with the fact that I loved the paranormal element to this novel.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it!
One of the best book I've ever read! I've been seeing this book a lot lately and had read the blurb but I was kind of putting off reading it...i wish I'd read it sooner! Read more
Published 9 days ago by turtle
5.0 out of 5 stars Mysterious...
Nightmares, memories and hallucinations merge unsettlingly with reality, creating a darkly tense, mysterious story. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Catherine (The Book Parade)
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, Questioning and Brilliant!
Mara Dyer is a very interesting book. It's hard to keep up at times but that is generally overpowered by the sense of wanting to find out what's next!
Published 19 days ago by Elise Atkinson
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed!
When I first read the synopsis of this book, I was completely intrigued. Seeing dead people? Uh, yes, sign me up! Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kat
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping
Brilliant book, highly reccomended. Laugh out loud funny and gasp out loud page turner can't wait to read the next one!
Published 1 month ago by Laurie
5.0 out of 5 stars OBSESSED
If you love young adult fiction you definitely have to read this.
Published 1 month ago by shanze
4.0 out of 5 stars Paranormal with a Difference
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is built on relationships. And it felt as though the romantic one was the least important, which I wanted to hug Hodkin for. Read more
Published 2 months ago by S
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant. Definitely a favourite.
I read the novel in under two days.
It was fast-paced, mysterious, romantic and amazing.
Such a good read and I can't believe I didn't read it sooner.
Published 3 months ago by Shanna
5.0 out of 5 stars The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
i loved this book. the story is soooooooooo good. its really hard to put this book into a category. its paranormal, fantasy and love story kinda book. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Rajany
4.0 out of 5 stars Great start to the series
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer tells the story of Mara who wakes up from a coma in hospital with no memory of the accident that put her there or what happened to her friends that were... Read more
Published 4 months ago by fennerstuk
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