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The Reckoning of Noah Shaw (The Shaw Confessions)

Review

The Reckoning of Noah Shaw (The Shaw Confessions)

Let me tell you about the loves of my life Mara Dyer and Noah Shaw. They are my precious babies and I hate it when bad things happen to them. I met them years ago in THE UNBECOMING OF MARA DYER. Since then, the Mara Dyer trilogy has concluded and the Noah Shaw trilogy has begun. Readers received a pretty happy ending with the Mara Dyer series, but unbeknownst to us, Michelle Hodkin had more stories to tell. Last year I was super excited to read THE BECOMING OF NOAH SHAW when it came out. The book opened new doors in this already large world. THE RECKONING OF NOAH SHAW continues that journey, asking more questions and answering few. I got this book in the evening and had finished it by the time I went to bed that night. I read it in about four hours, and boy was it worth it!

Spoilers for previous books beyond this point!

The RECKONING OF NOAH SHAW begins not long after the previous book ended. Noah is in New York, not sure what to do after breaking up with Mara, the love of his life. To be fair, he did just learn that she murdered a bunch of people. He’s in a car with a strange woman who turns out to be none other than Mara’s supposedly dead grandmother, also named Mara. So there’s that.

"These books are a bit like psychological thrillers...you never really know if what the character sees is real or not....if you’re ready for a great read that might make your brain hurt, go and meet Mara and Noah!"

Before I continue this review, I have one suggestion for new readers: I highly recommend rereading the series (both Mara’s and Noah’s) before you pick this book up. These books are super confusing and it can be helpful to have previous events fresh in your mind. There are a lot of references to previous books, especially the final Mara Dyer book.

I love my precious baby Noah. He has depression and the topic is covered really well in these books. As someone who also deals with depression, I just want to wrap him up in a blanket and give him a continuous supply of warm beverages. But instead he has to deal with a murderous girlfriend, mysterious powers and teenagers with abilities killing themselves under suspicious circumstances. But despite all that, the thing Noah struggled with the most this book was learning that he couldn’t necessarily trust his own mind. From the beginning of the Mara Dyer books we know she isn’t quite in her right mind --- but with Noah it sneaks up on you.

Sadly, Mara doesn’t make much of an appearance in this book. We mostly see her in flashbacks Noah has to their time in Horizons. While I love them together, I think it was necessary for Noah to have some time apart so they could grow as people. My hope is that the time apart will give them new perspectives that allow them to come back together even stronger. While you and I know that their love is stronger than anything, Noah might take some convincing.

In THE RECKONING OF NOAH SHAW we finally start to learn a bit more about the mysterious character known as the Professor. We first meet him in the Mara Dyer series and he continues his mysterious presence in this series. Over the course of these books we’ve come to realize that the Professor has some sort of superpower, considering he’s been alive for at least a hundred years. He seems to know everything about everyone and is simply moving people around like pieces on a chess board. I still don’t really know who the Professor is but I know I don’t trust him.

A character we get to see a lot of in this book is Goose. He’s Noah’s best friend from childhood and we first met him in THE BECOMING OF NOAH SHAW. I really like his role in the story. He helps push Noah along when he becomes reluctant while also keeping the story from getting too dark. Goose provides both a comic relief and a touchstone for reality.

I really love this series. It’s great for fans of WE WERE LIARS and unreliable narrators. While it’s a great read, you need to be prepared to be confused most of the time. These books are a bit like psychological thrillers and you never really know if what the character sees is real or not. So if you’re ready for a great read that might make your brain hurt, go and meet Mara and Noah!

Reviewed by Isabel C., Teen Board Member on November 14, 2018

The Reckoning of Noah Shaw (The Shaw Confessions)
by Michelle Hodkin