Review: The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

12:06 AM

The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin | Rating: ★★★★★

"I’ll walk forever with stories inside me that the people I love the most can never hear." 

There's always this feeling that comes with this trilogy. It is not unlike feeling mildly disturbed. Something about it messes with your senses. I'd released long ago that I love stories that have that creepy edge to them; the kind that makes you question what you're reading and the reliability of the narrator. The Evolution of Mara Dyer dives deeper into the dark end of the plot-line, sprinkling in a great combination of psychological thrills and swoon worthy romance. Further, it conveys just the right amount of coming of age snark that is so very prominent in young adults lives.

To put it bluntly: Michelle Hodkin makes your heart thud in anticipation all the while your skin is crawling at the general creepy atmosphere. I love this trilogy and on my second reading of it, I can honestly say that--despite its flaws--this certainly holds up. It's one of those books that screws with your mind and gets under your skin in a way that makes it impossible to put down. You devour it. Or it devours you.

If you thought things were dark and bleak in The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, things are only going up in flamers from here on out. We begin with something trickling through our veins--Mara is in a very, very dark place after discovering that her ex-boyfriend, Jude, is somehow still alive. There is this twisted cat and mouse game that really screws with the narration and keeps the plotlines going. We are left on the edge of our seats for the majority of this time--from the recovery Mara is now facing, after her family thinks she is ill, the impact it has on their relationships with one another, to the path of self discovery and the addition of new characters you simply cannot trust.

Also returning are fan favourites--including Mara's beloved older brother, Daniel; her boyfriend, Noah Shaw and the hotly anticipated return of her only friend at school (who was unceremoniously expelled in book one), Jamie Roth. During this time, the setting is pretty spread out once more. The most interesting--complicated and terrifying--scenes of this second installment take place at a recovery program Mara is pushed to join.

But not everything is as it seems. Not with her powers. Nor with Noah's. And we really get screwed with on multiple occasions--from the off page death of high school bully, Anna (uh, good riddance?) to Mara's creepy new "stalker" Phoebe, to the sketchy happenings of her new doctor and of course Jude's desire to make Mara pay for Claire's death.

There isn't a dull moment of The Evolution of Mara Dyer.

My favourite parts of the novel include:

(1) The flashbacks to another life. The past. For a few moments you can't help but wonder where this history is--is it a past life? Memories of someone else's past? Who's? Why? (2) Background history on Mara's grandmother, whom she shares quite a few similarities with. (3) Brief bits of Noah's family. (4) The ultra creepy, unsettled feeling EVERY PAGE BRINGS YOU. (5) The romance between Mara and Noah. (6) THE RETURN OF JAMIE ROTH AND THE EPIC BROMANCE BETWEEN HIM AND MARA. I love my kids. (7) I take it back I love basically every page of this damn book.

Overall, this trilogy is highly underrated. I'm not saying it's necessarily underrated but I don't feel it gets the love and appreciation it deserves. I love how creepy it is without being over the top--like I said early on in my review, the book--no, the series--just burrows under your skin and puts you on edge in the best way possible. I adore the writing and how easy it is to just get lost in the pages. It's entertaining and crazy in every-way you want.

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