Monday, April 9, 2012

The Selection (The Selection #1) by Kiera Cass

book cover of The Selection by Kiera Cass

Title: The Selection (The Selection #1)
Author: Kiera Cass
Release date: April 24, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 327
Source: Publisher

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in the palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself- and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

The Selection is an amazing story.  It’s a fabulous young adult dystopian that readers will adore. Kiera Cass is a wonderful writer and readers will be drawn into America’s world.  Once you pick this book up it will be nearly impossible to put down.

The Selection is a lot like The Bachelor, I will admit that.  Slight differences include a dystopian world, rebel attacks, and a prince as the bachelor.  Even with this similarity the story still manages to be unique and entertaining.  The girls are all individuals and while they are fighting for the same guy, they still manage to be friendly and encouraging (at least most of them.)

America wants nothing to do with The Selection but she has very little choice.  She is shocked when she is picked but she makes the best of it, mainly to help her family.  She is a brave, strong, regal girl but she very rarely sees this in herself.  Her biggest flaw is that she thinks so little of herself.  She does gain confidence throughout the book but she will need a lot more if she wants any chance at winning Prince Maxon’s heart and the crown.

Speaking of Prince Maxon: he is not the typical prince/rich bachelor at all.  He is strong, smart, humble, kind, and caring.  He is also rather inexperienced with girls which makes for some very funny/awkward moments.  He treats each girl very well and he really is looking for love.  His biggest problem is that he pays so much attention to what others want him to do.  He needs to grow a backbone and decide for himself!

As for the rest of the characters: some I liked, some I hated.  The other boy, Aspen, was a bit of a jerk and I admit that I am Team Maxon.  However there were times when I could see his appeal and could understand why America might fall for him.  Marlee, one of the other Selected, had a pretty big role but she remained quite a mystery.  The maids, Lucy, Anne, and Mary were some of the best characters.  They were fun and sweet and cracked me up.  The two characters I really hated were Celeste, one of the Selected, and America’s mom.  Celeste was so mean, not just to America but to everyone in the competition.  She was truly nasty.  America’s mom was so manipulative and mean to America.  It seemed like she didn’t even care about America’s feelings.  It was really hard to see a good side to her.  I really wanted to bitchslap her a few times.

I found the world-building to be a bit lacking but I hope that changes in the sequel.  There were a few mysteries regarding the history of Illea as well as the rebel attacks and both of those mysteries should really liven up the second book.

Overall, The Selection is one that I highly recommend.  For a dystopian young adult book it’s a rather light read but it certainly shows hints of darkness that might be developed in the following books.  The sequel is very high on my wishlist.

Looking for more reviews of The Selection?

17 Comments

  1. Passing Pages

    Interesting review…I’ve heard a lot of different opinions on this novel. It’s like people either really hate it or really enjoy it. I hate it when the mom in a book is a manipulative little twit ;) sometimes that can ruin a book for me! I’m glad you enjoyed it, though. Dystopian is a hit or miss genre.

  2. Hazal

    It’s so wonderful to see this book recieve a 5! I wasn’t expecting the slightly bad reviews this got on Goodreads. It sort of put me off slightly but after reading this, I am definitely going to buy/borrow it!

  3. BookBreather

    Yay, you liked it! I’m actually really excited about this book and it has a lot to do with the controversy. Really great review! I’m looking forward to this book even more now.

  4. Lili

    Like everyone above me seems to have said, I have read beyond conflicting reviews for this book. There is no inbetween. Everyone is either giving this book one star or five stars and all the controversy that the author stirred up against a blogger who gave it one star drove her away from the book blogging atmosphere.

    It makes me curious to read the book myself. Why is it the center of such drama? Great review, I’m glad you loved it. I can’t wait to check it out!

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