The Becoming of Noah Shaw

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 07 Nov 2017

Member Reviews

The excitement for The Becoming of Noah Shaw was unreal. The second Michelle Hodkin announced that she was writing and releasing more of the Mara Dyer series, AND that it was going to be in Noah's POV, I felt like I died and went to heaven. The Mara Dyer was one of my all time favorite YA series as a teen, and I'm so glad we get even more of the characters now. I absolutely LOVED Noah's POV – his narration and perspective on things is utterly unique and fascinating to read. It's one of the highlights of this book. I really can't wait to read more of this new series.
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Ahhhh! It was an incredible feeling to be back with these characters and in this world. 

I think I should have reread the Mara Dyer series before going in, though, because I’d forgotten so much. When this picked up, I felt kind of clueless as to what had happened. 

A GREAT start, however. I have always loved the way Hodkin writes, and it was no different here.
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major TW: suicide, depression, self-harm (seriously, do NOT read this book if suicide attempts & discussion thereof makes you uncomfortable)

2.5 stars

honestly just love yourself and pretend that mara dyer was a duology. i majorly hyped myself up for this because it was revisiting characters i havent seen since i was 16 and redelving into their world and conflicts. And there were things I liked about it like the setting in New York City. From subway rides to top floor apartments to just the busy atmosphere, it was everything I wanted it to be. But there was more that I didn’t enjoy.

I just can’t get over my feeling that I don’t think this continuation is necessary. And if it is, it definitely wasn’t meant for Noah. Mara is such an interesting, morally ambiguous character. Jamie completes me, I love him so much. Noah’s perspective could be so bland and so inundated with pessimism that it was a hassle after a while. I craved some vulnerability from him. A lighthearted break from his constant clouded thoughts. Where was book 2 Noah Shaw with the sass and declarations of love and a will to live? It’s just so strange to see him suddenly suffering because it's SUCH a random downgrade from where he was in earlier books?

Noah’s inner turmoil is so shocking to read about, though. From Mara’s perspective and from Retribution we learned a lot about him, but his thought processes and pessimism and mental illness in this book were so apparent that it was almost painful to read at times. Definite major trigger warning for suicidal thoughts and nihilism. Noah just ignored his suicidal thoughts though and was like “what am i supposed to do if I don’t want to live?” and i just want to be like …… there’s medicine. therapists. other stuff. It just seemed so tacky and fake edgy for none of those solutions to be mentioned, and almost damaging to not imply why he wouldn’t want to get help for himself. 

I was careful to keep an eye out for mental health rep, since this series deals a lot with suicide attempts, self-harm, depression, and other dark topics. Mental health rep in paranormal/urban fantasy books is so rare so I'm grateful for Hodkin attempting this..... but it probably will do more damage than help anything. There were a couple of lines that made me wary. Particularly, one time Noah tells Mara, “You’re my favorite method of self-harm,” and I know Mara & Noah’s powers may provide some context to this that doesn’t mean actual self-harm, but it was still a really disturbing line. 

This book’s plot is so strange because it focuses so much on the abstract. We meet new characters and old characters come back, but I don’t remember anything from book 3 and that’s what all of this is built on. In addition to that, all of the conflict is happening around them or to other people and they’re just in the middle of it like “huh, i wonder what’s wrong.” It was really slow and irritating because they weren’t actually being affected by anything, but they also weren’t doing anything to solve it, either.

I’ve said it before and i’ll say it again, but my least favorite trope in books is using miscommunication as a plot point. And Noah is CONSTANTLY lying and keeping secrets from Mara, and vise versa. I hated it. We just went through an entire trilogy of their bonding and relationship, just for them to end up here. I was exasperated so much by this and quite frankly, this book felt like a slap in the face. I should have known the direction it would turn based off the POV alone. But i’m so disappointed that after 3 books of character building, everything was just slam dunked in a trash can. 

When this book was good, it was great. Hilarious. Intriguing. But when it was bad, it was bad. Confusing. Problematic. A forced edginess. I’ve had difficulty recommending this series after The Retribution of Mara Dyer wasn’t that great, and this just stirred up my feelings even more. I’ll probably finish out this trilogy to see where it goes, but I think Hodkin bit off more than she can chew because these books just keep spiraling into more and more confusion with an increasing number of plot holes...
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I was so excited when I heard that this one was coming out and I'm honestly so disappointed. There should have been some kind of recap of what had happened in Mara Dyer because I had to look at a million reviews to remember what had happened and why they were in the situation they were. This didn't feel like the original trilogy at all. It didn't pull me in or keep me there. It wasn't paced very well and I just didn't feel like Noah was Noah. I wish I could give this a better review
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Regrettably, I was not able to read this before it was archived because of the formatting. I also have read really mixed reviews regarding it, and as I wasn't even the hugest Mara Dyer fan in the first place, I don't think I'm going to read this.
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I stopped reading at 13%. I don't remember very clearly what happened in the original Mara Dyer trilogy, but that might be hindering me from enjoying this book. There was also no clear plot laid out in that 13% I read--no real hook, either--or in the blurb. The writing was fine--a bit much at times--but not unbearable.
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My review of The Becoming of Noah Shaw is posted on my blog: Hope, Faith & Books

The review was posted on November 8, 2017.

The link to my review of The Becoming of Noah Shaw is here:

Review: Oh my god! I loved this book so much! So, I really want to keep this review spoiler free so I might be a bit vague about a few things. But trust me, you definitely want to experience this book and it's shocking moments when you read it, not in a review. So small bit of info, you should read all the Mara Dyer books before this to fully understand things happening. I actually haven't completely. I'm in the middle of Retribution (book 3), so I've read enough of it to understand the referenced things generally. So I wasn't missing much information. However, remember all those before notes, letters and chapters in Retribution?? We get to see a different side of that in this book. And we get to see how they end up coming to the main story!

Noah Shaw! I honestly think I enjoyed reading from his point of view more than Mara's. Don't get me wrong. I love the Mara Dyer books, but I just generally think I liked Noah's point of view a little bit better. I felt so bad every time we were with Noah when he was experiencing another Gifted's death. You couldn't help but feel awful every time he was seeing a death and couldn't do a thing to stop it. I could not imagine being in his shoes. What made things worse for him was that he knew these people had gifts like him, and he couldn't figure out why others like him were dying. On top of all this he was still dealing with everything regarding his father and his "research." Poor Noah was juggling so much.

The majority of the book revolves around trying to find out why other gifted are going missing and dying and who else in general has a gift. Come to find out, two more people really close to the Shaw and Dyer families had hidden gifts, one not knowing he had one, and one knowing and intentionally hiding it from them. We also catch up with friends from the Mara Dyer books. One being helpful to Noah and Mara, one not. Mentioned person who is not causes a lot of drama and issues throughout this book, including one of the huge scenes at the end. But throughout this book we see some new gifts come to light, new secrets revealed, and a lot of changes within many of our favorite characters due to their trauma and experiences with their gifts.

I really liked Daniel in this book. We see him really be like the brother Noah never had. And we even see Noah be exactly that for Daniel in return after the huge betrayal Daniel experienced from one of the people closest to him. And whats worse, is the ending. I have no idea how poor Daniel is going to handle what happened at the ending once he finds out about it. He will definitely need Noah's support. 

And Mara. Mara Mara Mara. My feelings about her are all over the place in this book. I loved the happy, loving, caring scenes between her and Noah in this book. But I also couldn't shake her actions. Hiding stuff from Noah. After all she went through and she still hides things from the person she loves. Not to mention she was always a prime suspect in the deaths that were happening. And she always acted differently regarding it. She would deny it sometimes, or just not say anything at all, but she seemed to be the most suspicious of the group regarding the people dying. She never had a straightforward reaction regarding it. She was just different from the Mara we used to know. 

The ending. I still do not know how to react to the ending of this book. Lets just say all the things that happened at the end are setting up for an incredibly interesting next book. It was not my favorite ending, but a good one still. I am incredibly excited for the next book because I sense it will have a lot of interesting things going on! 

5 Stars!
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Thank you Simon & Schuster and Netgalley for a copy of the eARC in exchange for a fair review.

First off if you have read the The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer and the other two books in the trilogy start there. You will understand who everyone is and who Mara and Noah are better if you read her trilogy before starting this one.

I just finished this and I am still processing... I mean like I know Mara is bad, but she isn't and I love her and I am 100% on board with shipping Noah and Mara so I don't know how I feel, but I get why she did what she did.

Normally I would say quite a bit more about what is going on in this book and then jump in with how I feel about it, but I wouldn't feel right spoiling any of this for Mara Dyer fans. I wasn't sure how I would feel about a book from Noah's perspective, but Michelle hit it out of the park. Just as dark and heart wrenching as the Mara trilogy. I think at this point I will just concede that I will read whatever she writes.
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The Becoming of Noah Shaw by Michelle Hodkin was very high up on my list of most anticipated reads for 2017, and I really couldn’t wait to get started on the book. I even binge re-read the Mara Dyer series beforehand, just so the story and characters from the original books would be fresh in my mind once I started this one. (I’m really glad that I decided to reread those books first, there was so much that I had forgotten from the first time I read them!)

The Becoming of Noah Shaw is the first book in The Shaw Confessions series by Michelle Hodkin. This new series is a companion series to the Mara Dyer series, and picks up not long after where The Retribution of Mara Dyer ends. You could definitely read this novel without having read the original series first, as a good bit of things are explained throughout the story, but parts of it could be confusing, so if you haven’t read the original series yet, you may want to do that first. The storyline for the book feels new and fresh, while still having some familiar aspects from the previous books. I’m super curious to get my hands on the next book, especially considering that this book ends with a pretty huge cliffhanger.

The story is narrated by Noah Shaw this time, whereas the previous series was narrated mostly by Mara Dyer. It was interesting to be in his head throughout the story, and to get his viewpoints on what was happening. Most of the characters that we know and love from the previous books are along for the ride in this new book, though in a way they feel almost mysteriously different in a way. (Maybe that’s just me? Who knows what happened to them between the time that the two books took place.) We’re also introduced to a few new characters in the story as well, and I’m definitely curious to know more about them as well!

Overall; The Becoming of Noah Shaw was an interesting read, and I’m super curious to know what’s going to happen over the course of the series. And, after that pretty massive cliffhanger ending, I’ll be pining away to get my hands on the next book in the series, which does not currently have a title or a name. The wait will be excruciating! If you haven’t yet read the Mara Dyer series, do add them, and The Becoming of Noah Shaw, to your TBR today!
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The becoming of Noah Shaw by Michelle Hodkins


I can't even write a proper review right now after what I just read. I liked some parts and I hated some parts and I honestly don't know what to feel.

I think what I didn't like the most was Noah's pov especially since I loved him in the Mara Dyer trilogy, something just felt off about this book and it was mainly Noah and Mara

 I totally understand that through his pov we see things differently and that's fine and dandy but I don't know if it's because it's been awhile since Retribution but both the characters felt different like they weren't the Mara and Noah we've come to to know. 

I'll probably read the next book just to see what happens but as of right now all I can say is it was an okay read, not my favorite.
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To be specific I'm rating this 4.5 stars.

When I had first heard about this book I would have happily bought it no matter if it was Noah Shaw or something else. The Mara Dyer trilogy was one of my first Young Adults and I absolutely loved it even as a reread... but if you've read the Mara Dyer trilogy you know that even though the first to were fantastic that last one took a flop. I'm not sure what caused that but I know the book felt like the series was taken over by a completely different writer... and thats how The Becoming of Noah Shaw feels.

To be honest that may be the point of The Becoming of Noah Shaw considering it sounds like its written by an English author and the story itself is good... but I can't say Im particularly thrilled its a continuation, I would've much rather Noah's life before Mara or even Noah's mothers and Mara's grandmothers I feel like that would have been more fun an interesting since most loose ends were already tied up in the Mara Dyer trilogy and I really don't like them being reopened.

Another thing is that in the Mara Dyer series Noah was usually cool and collected along with being pompous and a smart ass but through Mara's point of view you would believe he is honest however this entire series he's angry at the world and he's lying to pretty much everyone plus he's letting his composure drop and kind of loosing it at times. Plus through Noah's eyes you really see how people have different perspectives characters like Daniel and Jamie look different through Noah's eyes and it feels as though this book is a continuation of the series with completely different characters that simply have the same names as the originals. 

Its the same idea as the Mara Dyer trilogy but at the same time its not. 

To be quite honest as a Mara Dyer fan I wasn't that thrilled with the book itself, but separating the book from the original trilogy it is a good book. It simply feels as though the book was not written to target fans of the Mara Dyer trilogy but with the flashbacks thats a problem...
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I gave this book 5 stars. I really loved how well this book was written, the characters weren't weird and different than they were in the original trilogy and it was well paced.

This book was a ticking time bomb. We know from the synopsis that Noah and Mara are going to have the main conflict in this book. Going into this book I was very nervous as I love Noah and Mara together. They are perfect together. It’s even harder seeing Noah grow to distrust Mara as he loves her so much. They love each other so much and that’s part of the problem, they are willing to do anything to protect each other. 

The fact that our former protagonist of the Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is now our antagonist. This is a unique position as this rarely happens. We see this character that we grew to love and fear and we’re seeing this side of her that we don’t really want to see. She is turning into something unrecognizable. 

It was interesting to see everything from Noah’s perspective, he seems like an open book, but he really is good at answering questions with questions, you can’t really know Noah. Noah is actually pretty noble. Pun intended. When we first met him in the first Mara Dyer book he seems like a sleazy playboy, now he can see that he isn’t what we thought he was. He’s a really good person who wants to do the right thing.

Noah and Mara’s banter was the same as it always was, even when they were in tough situations, they were stressed, they still had their easy banter going on. I loved this the ease between them, even though they might not have completely trusted each other, they could still talk to each other.

I hope that in the end Noah and Mara will find their way back to each other because I would love nothing more than to see them work it all out. I know this may not be the case because of the whole “You will love him to ruins” thing, but I still have hope for them.

Also, more of a sidenote, you should 100% read the Mara Dyer trilogy before reading or else it won’t make a lot of sense. There are a lot of references to things that happen in that first trilogy that is detrimental to this story.
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I have always been a huge fan of Michelle Hodkin and her Mara Dyer series, so I was so excited to be able to read this continuation. However, I wasn’t as into it as I hoped I would be. 

Hodkin still has a magical way of writing, but I didn’t experience the same cravings to read like I did when I read the original series. I adore Noah Shaw, but I have to be honest with myself and admit that I only love Noah through Mara’s eyes. 

The story itself was pretty good. There was plenty of mystery and twists that kept me reading, but at the same time it felt unnecessary. 

I’m glad I read it, and I’m curious to see where this could go. Thanks to netfalley for providing a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
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The original Mara Dyer trilogy is absolutely one of the best series I’ve read, YA or otherwise, and the eerie, haunting feel of it is unmatched. It’s committed to its aesthetic, from everything to the writing style to the cover designs to the titles. So of course when I heard their was going to be a spinoff series from Noah’s POV, of course I was going to read it, even if I wasn’t sure how the tale was going to continue after the revelations in The Retribution of Mara Dyer. However, Michelle Hodkin continues her unsettling series seamlessly in a new state with a new plot and new supporting characters, while still pulling the frightening threads that wove the first three novels into such a haunting tale like a masterful puppeteer.

First and foremost, The Becoming of Noah Shaw carries the same dark and eerie vibe that the original series is so well known for. Reading it felt like a thick fog of an ominous, overcast day was hanging over both the characters and myself as the reader- which is the perfect atmosphere you want when reading a paranormal thriller! While the tone of the writing style was consistent with the original books, the script was flipped getting to read from Noah’s first person POV. While Noah doesn’t feel like quite as an unreliable narrator as Mara, it was fascinating seeing her through a narrative’s eyes that weren’t her own (and she was totally, totally creepy). Noah’s POV was also brasher, sexier, and more reckless than Mara’s- pretty much everything you would expect from a British bad boy with a supernatural chip on his shoulder. I applaud Michelle Hodkin a thousand times over for being able to write such distinct POVs between Mara and Noah.

There was also, thankfully for me, a good amount of recap from the previous series (while not feeling like an info-dump). I didn’t have time to reread the original trilogy before reading this (though I most certainly will be soon) but enough reminders about key events were worked into the narrative naturally that I didn’t feel lost even though it’s been about three years since I read the original trilogy. I was able to comfortably fall back into the universe Hodkin created, revisiting old favorite characters (Daniel! Jamie!) and meeting new ones who both repulsed me and who I adored (Goose is my new favorite character, I want a book just about him! I loved how he just rolled with everything). While the mystery and plot of this book builds off of the previous installments but is definitely still new, I appreciated elements from the original trilogy that made their way into this book, specifically the focus on different types of archetypes. In the original trilogy there is discussion surrounding Carl Jung and his famous psychological archetypes, with Mara notably being assigned the role of the Shadow Self. In this novel, the characters discuss the Dungeons & Dragons archetypes and how they relate to the members of their group and how they may influence their motivations (lawful good, chaotic neutral, chaotic good, etc.- this stuff is really fascinating, I highly recommend checking it out) and I found this to be so interesting and also helpful, as it helps the reader to make sense of characters who are sometimes so unsettling and unpredictable.

In order the stay away from spoiler territory, I’ll refrain from discussing plot specifics too much. However, I will say that just because we’re not reading about creepy Horizons and crazy Dr. Kells doesn’t mean that this book doesn’t have its own scare factor that can hold its own against the others. There’s a lot of build up from the events that happened in the previous novels, and we start to learn even more about the manifestation of the characters’ powers and meet more teens with them and learn about an even wider variety of their “gifts.” Readers also get a glimpse into how other teens have coped with their paranormal abilities and how its impacted their life, which was an element I was really fascinated by and appreciated, that Michelle Hodkin writes about such unsettling and extreme circumstances yet doesn’t pretend they exist in a vacuum and thinks about the real ramifications they would have on the characters’ lives, even off what we see on the page. The epilogue of the novel was also incredible to- shocking and crazy yet it felt so perfect too, like I was just WAITING for this reveal to happen since book one. There were also a lot of letters and journal entries peppered throughout the story that helped tie past and present together, and I’m really excited to see how they look in a finished copy.

Overall: The Becoming of Noah Shaw was incredible. It kept the unique and unsettling aesthetic of the previous three books while also doing justice to a new narrator and letting the reader see Mara from outside her own head, which was so interesting because readers of the original trilogy were with her through so much. While I at times missed the Florida setting and Mara’s family, I loved getting to learn more about Noah’s past and learn more about his family and estate in the UK. The ending of the novel has a worthy plot twist, and though it left me reeling and almost a bit unsure of what I read, I loved that I can still be surprised by this series, and in a big way. If you’re a fan of the original Mara Dyer trilogy, The Becoming of Noah Shaw will be a HUGE highlight of your 2017 reading year.
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I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest and voluntary review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

I dove into Michelle Hodkin’s The Becoming of Noah Shaw partly eager, excited, and afraid. It’s been a few years since I read The Mara Dyer trilogy and my memory is not so great, nor did I have time for a re-read, so I’ll admit, I was confused throughout the book. I was able to recollect some of the things that happened based on what was going on and what was being mentioned. Still, it was a rather fun read, for I tried to make myself think of this as a new series anyway and not worry about what’s already happened.

We open to Noah’s father’s funeral. We are reminded through Noah that his father was no father of the year type and there wasn’t much sadness going about on his death. The funeral is shake up the death of another person out in the cemetery. It was a suicide from the looks of it, yet right before he died, Noah heard a voice pleading for help. Things are definitely far from normal despite his father being out of his life for good now.

He, Mara, and his friend, Goose go back to the States after the funeral. Wanting to return to a normal life just isn’t in the cards for soon, Stella and her new friend, Leo are getting them involved in more matters of the bizarre after yet another suicide happens right before their eyes and Noah was able to hear her thoughts right before she died as well.

We basically have one strange mystery on our hands here! And since I was reading the last half of this with a head cold, it’s possible that made it all the worst for me as I found myself struggling to understand everything that was happening. I wanted to LOVE this book, but sadly, I just liked it. Being sick and having a really bad memory on top of that did not do me any favors when it came to comprehension

It was still a good read though! I was enjoying the mystery and just utter weirdness and questions that kept popping up. The murders of all the Gifted ones and how suspicion was being cast on a certain character! It was bizarre, yet I did love it for it’s bizarre-ness!

Being inside Noah’s head this time was a trip too! Granted, again with the memory issues, I can’t remember why I loved Noah so much from the past books, but I still loved being inside his head! He’s a different sort of guy with his own secrets and darkness to him.

Which let me tell you, this book does have its darkness to it. I’m not saying it was a dark and evil kind of book, but just an overall sense of darkness and bleakness. Murder, secrets, and mayhem can do that to a story! The way it ends too has quite the impact! Again, what with my horrendous memory, I feel like it didn’t pack quite as strong of a punch as it would if I had the memory I deserved being such an avid reader! But I could pretty much tell that things are about to get very interesting indeed for Noah’s next book!

If you haven’t read the Mara Dyer series yet, which was totally awesome and weird in all the best ways, I would definitely recommend picking those up first before reading this one! And if you have read them and have a slightly poor memory like myself, a re-read might in fact be a grand idea if you have the time! Definitely considering that myself before the next book comes out, but we’ll see how things go! 

Overall Rating 3.5/5 stars—a slight take down that is mostly my own doing and having a bad memory for the previous books of this world/series. Had I the time to read them beforehand, I could easily give this 4.5-5 stars!

The Becoming of Noah Shaw releases November 7, 2017
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I don't have words for this.

Being in Noah's head is exactly what I expected. He's smart and rude and shamelessly loves Mara and I was maniacally gleeful as I read every word on every page.

It was one hell of a roller coaster I should have been prepared for, but was still stunned speechless when I got to the end. 

Yes, this review is vague af, but I wouldn't dream of ruining one single page. 

**Huge thanks to Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers for providing the arc free of charge.**
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After the end of the Retribution of Mara Dyer I wanted more of Mara and co's story. The Becoming of Noah Shaw filled this hole stupendously. This book gave us a chance to see the next part in his story from his point of view as the main character. I always found his story to be the most compelling given his upbringing and family. The story told from his perspective allowed me to get a better understanding not only of Noah but of his relationship with Mara. The plot centers around other Gifted committing suicide and the gang trying to find out why. 
While the writing was incredibly well done I felt there was little development for characters other than Noah. The book does come with trigger warnings but I found Noah's thoughts on suicide to be slightly disturbing. The book deals heavily with mental illness but views all authority figures as evil so no mention of seeking help for these kinds of thoughts exists, which is damaging to others struggling with those thoughts. By the end of the book I felt the plot had just gotten started and the concluding conversation still left me confused as to who/what had been responsible for the deaths.
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I'd gladly reread this book and risk further heart break. It was worth it.
I read the entire Mara Dyer Series and loved it but I had no idea the Shaw Confessions was going to come out.
First, let me start by saying that the summary is crazy. I was almost shouting at my computer screen because I was so afraid Noah and Mara might be torn apart. 
When I opened to the first page, I was immediately struck by how different Noah's though processes are. Unlike Mara's story, the wording here is more formal and less playful. This story is also a lot more adult. Scenes of violence, sexual acts, and other possibly offensive acts do take place. There is a trigger warning, so fair warning.
That being said, all of the doom and gloom actually made this story better. I was DYING to know what was going to happen to Noah and Mara but at the same time, I was dreading it.

I'm not going to spoil it. I will say that The Becoming of Noah Show is unlike other YA books you read. It doesn't shy away from taking you to the ledge and leaving you hang there, thrilled and terrified and shouting, though not entirely in outrage. The plot is a bit slow but it's better that way because the ending makes more sense. By the time you close the book, you'll be feeling just as raw as Noah and Mara themselves!
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