Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Selection

The Selection by Kiera Cass
4.5/5 stars
HarperTeen, 2012
327 pages
YA Dystopia

Source: Received an ARC through Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.

I honestly wasn't sure I was going to read this after the author's pique over Wendy at The Midnight Garden's awesome review but the concept kept calling to me and I am so glad that I did read it as it featured many of the things I enjoy in books. While not to everyone's taste, it really worked for me.

Basically in this dystopian future, America is chosen to compete with thirty-four other young ladies to become wife to Prince Maxon. While America has no interest in the position due to her love for the unsuitable Aspen, she grudgingly enters to benefit her family and finds out some surprising things along the way.

First, you really must ignore the names. I find them simply dreadful (and I only gave a small sample here). Once I trained my brain to blip over them, it was easier. I found the world building to be sufficient and the concept to be very attractive. The idea of groups of people gathered together to compete against each other is a very appealing one to me. It is a little like The Hunger Games as well as First Date, both of which I enjoyed and I've probably read other books with similar plot points. For people who like a lot of action, they will not find that here. But for people like me who enjoy reading about girls swanning around in pretty dresses as well as the machinations of a group of girls in competition against each other, this has a lot to offer.

What I didn't like was how this book kind of seems to be dragged out. Rebels with mysterious agendas against Illea have been attacking consistently on the search for something. I am really speculating that this story could have been told in one slightly longer book with some tighter editing. We shall have to wait and see. I also hated the love triangle. While Maxon and Aspen are both certain of how they feel about America, she has complicated feelings. I was not in sync with her; after the way Aspen treated her, I was ready for to become a princess. Maxon is not perfect by any means but Aspen's behavior was so low and I am not ready to forgive him. I found myself becoming increasingly frustrated with America over this issue.

Recommended for: people who loved the Capitol scenes in The Hunger Games. It also made me think of the movie Clueless, one of my faves although this book is definitely not as good as that film. I also thought it felt a bit like a fairy-tale, which is always a positive to me. I was just pretty happy while reading this and I devoured it so that is what makes this such a good read for me.

Not recommended for: People who want a lot of action and excitement or a gritty dystopia-you will not find that here.

Cover: I believe I've mentioned that I love pretty dresses, yes? I'm not entirely sure about the position though-why is her arm above her head? And her hair could be redder to more accurately match the character description.


  1. I am still not sure that this is a book I'd like. I was never a fan of The Bachelor. I also hate love triangles. With the amount of love triangles in YA fiction, you'd think it was a normal occurrence in real life for teen girls to have two guys in love with them. I think there are a lot of terrible names for characters these days in YA fiction. :)

    I'm glad you enjoyed the book and even gave it 4.5 stars. Thanks for your review!

  2. I actually really enjoyed this book, too, which is surprising considering how reluctant I was after the negative reviews. I liked The Selection parts, the romance, EVEN THE NAMES *lol* I think really suit the characters. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed this one too! And Kiera Cass made a case at Wendy's blog? :O Well, that's... shocking.

  3. I am so happy that you're happy that you read this book, B! I remember hearing about this through what happened at Wendy's blog too and not being sure about whether I wanted to read it or not, but I actually kind of ADORE the idea of a dystopian-type Bachelor -- and it makes it even better that it was a surprisingly awesome read! I love how this book just made you happy. I love those types! :')

    AMAZING review as always, B!! :) I think I have a copy of this one on its way to me right now, so now you just made me EXTRA excited to read it! <3


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