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The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer 1) Paperback – 1 Mar 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's UK (1 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 085707363X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857073631
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,793 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"A strong, inventive tale."

--"Kirkus Reviews", August 1, 2011

"Haunting and dreamlike, the intrigue and romance of Mara Dyer will inescapably draw you in." --Cassandra Clare, author of the "New York Times" bestselling Moral Instruments series

""The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" strikes a rare balance of darkly funny, deliciously creepy and genuinely thoughtful. One minute I was laughing out loud, and the next, I was so scared I wanted to turn on all the lights and hide under the covers. Michelle Hodkin's talent and range are obvious, from her chilling descriptions to romantic scenes that almost crackled on the page. I've never read anything quite like it."--Veronica Roth, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Divergent

"

"A clever, captivating thriller, "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" is perfect for those (like me) who like their heroes dark, their heroines dangerous, and their romances "seriously" twisted."

--Kirsten Miller, "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Eternal Ones"

"WOW. Michelle Hodkin's debut will keeps

"Haunting and dreamlike, the intrigue and romance of Mara Dyer will inescapably draw you in." --Cassandra Clare, author of the "New York Times" bestselling Moral Instruments series

""The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" strikes a rare balance of darkly funny, deliciously creepy and genuinely thoughtful. One minute I was laughing out loud, and the next, I was so scared I wanted to turn on all the lights and hide under the covers. Michelle Hodkin's talent and range are obvious, from her chilling descriptions to romantic scenes that almost crackled on the page. I've never read anything quite like it."--Veronica Roth, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Divergent

"

"A clever, captivating thriller, "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" is perfect for those (like me) who like their heroes dark, their heroines dangerous, and their romances "seriously" twisted."

--Kirsten Miller, "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Eternal Ones"

"WOW. Michelle Hodkin's debut will keep you guessing until the last page--and long after."

--Beth Revis, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Across the Unviverse"

"As spooky and twisty as it is lyrical and beautiful, "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" grabbed me and wouldn't let go. Read this one with the lights on." --Rachel Hawkins, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Demonglass

"

4Q 4P J S

Hodkin, Michelle. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. Simon & Schuster, 2011. 464p. $16.99. 978-1-4424-2176-9.

After Mara Dyer's best friend dies, she begins to go through episodes of posttraumatic stress disorder. She cannot remember the accident, or was it an accident? Mara only knows that of the four people who went that night to the abandoned asylum, she was the only survivor. Mara gets a new start in Florida, where she meets sexy Noah, who is known for being a player. Mara tries to ignore Noah at first but easily becomes entwined in his charms. Hallucinations and nightmares are a regular part of her life that she tries to keep hidden, especially from Noah. After an incident with her younger brother, Mara finds out that Noah has powerful secrets of his own.

Hodkin's debut is witty and thought-provoking and will have readers captivated until the very end. It takes readers through constant chaos, wonder, and bewilderment. The story can almost be compared to Justine Larbalestier's Liar (Bloomsbury, 2009/VOYA December 2009), only Mara is not aware of the clouded deceits of her experiences. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer will satisfy mystery lovers, dark fantasy seekers, horror believers, and readers who have a knack for romance.

VOYA, October 2011

"Haunting and dreamlike, the intrigue and romance of Mara Dyer will inescapably draw you in." --Cassandra Clare, author of the "New York Times" bestselling Moral Instruments series

""The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" strikes a rare balance of darkly funny, deliciously creepy and genuinely thoughtful. One minute I was laughing out loud, and the next, I was so scared I wanted to turn on all the lights and hide under the covers. Michelle Hodkin's talent and range are obvious, from her chilling descriptions to romantic scenes that almost crackled on the page. I've never read anything quite like it."--Veronica Roth, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Divergent"

"A clever, captivating thriller, "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" is perfect for those (like me) who like their heroes dark, their heroines dangerous, and their romances "seriously" twisted."

--Kirsten Miller, "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Eternal Ones"

"WOW. Michelle Hodkin's debut will keep you guessing until the last page--and long after."

--Beth Revis, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Across the Unviverse"

"As spooky and twisty as it is lyrical and beautiful, "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" grabbed me and wouldn't let go. Read this one with the lights on." --Rachel Hawkins, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Demonglass

"

"A strong, inventive tale."

--"Kirkus Reviews", August 1, 2011

Hodkin's debut is witty and thought-provoking and will have readers captivated until the very end. It takes readers through constant chaos, wonder, and bewilderment..."The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" will satisfy mystery lovers, dark fantasy seekers, horror believers, and readers who have a knack for romance.

VOYA, October 2011

There are echoes of Stephen King's classic Carrie in this young-adult series kickoff...Written from Mara's perspective, "The Unbecoming" deftly melds alternate realities. Hodkin's transitions from the mundane to hallucinated horror are unexpected, seamless and creepy, packing the same sort of cinematic punch as scenes from "The Blair Witch Project"....Discerning the truth is just part of the pleasure of reading the delightfully bent reality in "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer".

--"Los Angeles Times

"

"First-time author Hodkin has paired a steamy romance with a paranormal mystery that will cause teen readers whiplash as they jerk from one plot twist to another."

--"Booklist"

"Anyone who thinks old-fashioned romantic scenes can't move teens today will be proven wrong here. This boy will make readers swoon. The characters are real and wonderful, and the supernatural story is riveting. Expect this book to fly off the shelves."

--"SLJ"

"Creepy, haunting, addictive and surprisingly romantic, Mara's story is beautiful and complex...Hodkin has elevated the teenage paranormal romance into something completely her own."

--"Romantic Times"

"It's the story of a girl trying to piece together what happened the night she, her best friend, her boyfriend and his sister spent the night in an abandoned asylum and only she survived, unscathed but traumatized...And it's the story of a girl falling in love...Be careful, 'cause you'll fall right along with her."

--"MTV's Hollywood Crush

" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Michelle Hodkin grew up in south Florida, went to college in New York, and studied law in Michigan. She lives in Charleston, South Carolina and you can visit her online at michellehodkin.com.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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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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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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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When I first read the synopsis of this book, I was completely intrigued. Seeing dead people? Uh, yes, sign me up! And the book starts off really well - a flashback to a seance, followed by Mara waking up in hospital with no memory of what happened - ah ha, here we go!

But there was so little paranormal and so much flirting, lusting, falling out and just generally fobbing about between Mara and Noah that I kept getting bogged down just waiting for something spooky, creepy or even just interesting to happen. Personally, I would have been happier if there had been 50 pages less of back and forth between them.

For the most part, I didn't mind Mara - she had a pretty sharp wit, and a good sense of humour, and it was fairly easy for me to sympathise with some of the things she had been through, but she's not going to stick out in my mind as an amazing lead character - there just wasn't enough spark.

I'd have to have been blind, or living in a box not to see all the comments about Noah when UMD was first published. But, honestly, I didn't like him all that much - he was inconsistent, almost creepy and more than a bit dodgy and I got so bored with the constant back and forth between him and Mara, that I wished I could reach through the pages and smack their heads together.

Mara's family plays a big part in the book, which I really liked - her mother in particular was quite interesting, and I loved that as well as there being a big family influence there was also some ethnic diversity. One person I just couldn't figure out, or connect with at all was her brother Daniel - me and perfect characters never get along and this guy is SO perfect. I just wanted to see him screw up so that he stopped being so perfect.
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