review: The Selection by Kiera Cass
from goodreads - 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.
my take - Fans of Matched and The Hunger Games (and the TV show, The Bachelor) will see lots of familiar elements in The Selection by Kiera Cass. Things like, a love triangle, a caste system, doting attendants (think subdued versions of Octavia, Venia and Flavius) and a country in turmoil – however, that doesn’t mean that The Selection is a copy cat book. It’s not, it definitely has its own originality.
How it’s different:
1.) The world building. The world Cass has created is not as dire as in The Hunger Games, or so controlled like that of Matched where citizens have no freedoms of choice and are limited in knowledge. Citizens of Illea are informed, and their only repression comes from their caste fate, not strict government control. Albeit it can be argued that they are controlled, but it’s not so much big brother is watching with spies or secret cameras.
2.) The story. It’s basically The Bachelor in a readable YA format and instead of a rich guy, it’s a rich Prince looking for his future Queen. However, the difference comes in that each girl is pampered, respected and protected – and the rebel attacks. We don’t know much about the rebels, except that there are two types – the Northerners and the Southerners. I believe by book two we will have a better understanding of the rebels and what it is they want/looking for and maybe even see a turncoat or two.
3.) America and the ending. America (the MC) is a strong, stubborn heroine which is not unlike that of Cassie and Katniss. Yet, the difference is that America comes from a loving home with strong (though at times strained) family ties. She’s devoted to her family and takes pride in her “talent,” her musical abilities. America is also honest with herself, and that honesty is apparent by the end of the book. The ending (which is NOT a cliffhanger) shows her courage, sense of adventure and ability to keep a level-head.
side-note: I’m not a fan of the love triangle, and in this case it’s really killing me – I like them both! Okay, maybe I like Maxon slightly more (he was the star of this book), but my allegiance could easily be swayed with the next book!!
This is a must read for lovers utopia/dystopia genres and maybe even those of reality TV.