It has taken me a week to try and get my thoughts together regarding this book. And after 7 days, I am still left with an unpleasant taste in my mouth. Honestly, I think I must have read a completely different book than everyone who gave this 5 stars, did.
I went into reading this book with an open mind, and was actually very anxious to start reading it because of all the glowing reviews and recommendations I had gotten for it. And even when I didn't fall in love with the story the way that others did, I was still more than willing to stick with it because I wanted to see what happened. I wanted to see where the author was going with all of Mara's hallucinations. But, the further I got in the book, the more frustrated I became.
Some of the things that frustrated me: There are the obvious similarities to Twilight & Hush Hush...a quiet, awkward girl becomes the stalkerish obsession of a ridiculously gorgeous boy full of mystery. But where this book differs (in my opinion anyway) is that the stalkerish boy in question here has absolutely NO appeal or redeeming qualities whatsoever. Noah is one of the most obnoxious, self-centered asshats I have come across in fiction in quite some time. And the way that Mara goes from being rightfully stand-offish towards him, to being completely smitten beyond all hope in zero to sixty is just one of the many faults of this story. And then there is Mara's best friend. About 3 quarters of the way through, he completely drops out of the story. Um...why was he there in the first place? Other than to pop in every few chapters to remind Mara to stay away from Noah?! Just when I thought there might be a character that was interesting and trying to talk some sense into our heroine... he gets suspended from school, and poof! he's gone.
And here is my main problem with the overall book: To be blunt, Mara's 'ability' is just plain ridiculous. Yes, it is unique...but only in that it is a silly story concept that just doesn't work in my opinion. And the fact that she meets and falls in love with a boy who just happens to have the exact opposite ability...is enough to make me want to smack my head into the wall. And as if all those elements weren't enough to make me sorry I wasted my time on this book in the first place...there's the actual ending. The 'big reveal' as it were....it worked about as well as one of those 'dun dun DUN!!!' sound effects in a really cheesy movie. And left me literally saying out loud to myself..."Are you freaking kidding me?!" I know they are setting up a series here, but gimme a break! To have the villain magically come 'back from the dead', is one of the most overused plot elements of all time. And it wasn't even used well.
Maybe I have just been spoiled by reading so many truly great books over the last few months, but The Unbecoming Of Mara Dyer was a huge disappointment.