Wow! I finished this book yesterday and I'm still somewhat speechless. It's a distopian with a really hopeful main character. It's YA with lots of romance, but it's not just another YA romance.
Juliette accidentally kills people when she touches them. She's locked up in an insane asylum with conditions beyond inhumane. She's just been assigned a new guard who she has a slight past with. The totalitarian government taking over the world wants to use her curse/gift as a weapon. As far as a synopsis goes that's really all you need to know.
But what you need to know is the writing is phenomenal. This writer has a talent for grabbing emotions. Now in the past, I've found books I absolutely love because the emotional connection to the characters are so strong. They usually have a slower pace. Think Shiver (book 1) or Twilight. Neither are really page turners, but both evoke mood and emotion. Shatter Me will shatter you. It does both. And beyond that Mafi's writing is almost poetic. Above being able to make a page turner of deeply emotional writing she took a lot of risks with this book, lots of repetition and crossed out lines, almost stream of conscious but not quite. I think some of the repetition was a bit much. It didn't work everywhere, but it worked most places. And she did what she wanted to do with her book. I admire that.
From a writer's pov, I found this book motivational. I see so many mediocre YA books (that's not an insult--most books will be average)and think my story is this good. Why do I keep getting rejected? And I still don't have an answer for that, but I read Shatter Me and I know my writing isn't there yet. While it doesn't explain how other average manuscripts get published, it is a tough market and when you're average you need luck.
Just my thoughts. Go read Shatter Me.