Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass

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 a palace and compete for the heart of 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. (Link to goodreads page)

I finally got round to reason this! It's been on my TBR for so long, and now I'm free!! I first heard about this book on epic reads, who are constantly raving about it! I went into it knowing very little, and from knowing what happens I think that's for the best. It is quite a predictable book, and having as little info as possible really helps  to make it more unpredictable. 

These books are a YA trilogy which are set in a futuristic USA. I marathoned this series over about 4 days, so all of the books have sort of blurred together. Therefore I doing a review of the while trilogy. This shouldn't contain any spoilers either. 

I really loved this book! As I was reading it I found myself grinning uncontrollably and having such a warm feeling inside. This was mainly in the scenes between America and Maxon, they were so cute together. 
Sometimes the way she was on the border line between him and Aspen was very annoying. Occasionally I felt I didn't exactly  know where she stood, and how she was feeling. I wasn't sure how it happened because the novel is written in first person, but I often felt left out of her feelings. However this could be because she was unsure of where she stood, I just found it confusing at times.

However this was probably the only part of the book I found at all confusing. In general the story was very easy to follow. And although it was get in a dystopian world, the isolated nature of the palace made the dangers outside very rare and easy to understand. We did see the outside world in the later books, and I think that without the further world building, just the focus on the competition would be a little boring.  

Saying this I loved the concept of the competition. Although it has been done before, I thought it was so unique. It captured teenage girls so well! The competition and rivalry, yet the love, and the fake hating. It seems that everyone hated each other, but actually they are really good friends. There were certainly so characters within the selection! I think that Cass did really well at making a variety of character within the girls. They all seemed to be contenders and each had very individual personalities. There was potential for them to be really similar, but they were written, and seen through Americas POV, so we got a good perspective on Americas character as well as the other girls. 

America was a very typical female protagonist. Unaware of how perfect she was and suitably beautiful. She came from the bottom, and rose to fame she didn't really want (*cough* Katniss). I found it very difficult to find faults in her, apart being a bit cynical. This again, is a very common trait in female protagonists, being wary and unwilling to accept things at first. I thought she would be something different, but she was nothing special. Regardless I did still like her, and she was quite relatable. 

One of my pet peeves is disjointed conversations. In this it was some by there being loads of thought in the middle of the conversations. So the conversations didn't seem to flow, and I kept on having to look back to remember what had previously been said.  

Saying this, I thought that the book was very well written. It was a pretty easy read, and I also read it really quickly. The books are about 300 pages each, so for me they all sort of blurred together into a mega book. I've seen it described as reality TV meets dystopian, and this is a very accurate description! Nowadays most books are a combination of genres, but this is very drastic, and I've never read such a chick-lit dystopian before.

Although I probably wouldn't reread this book, I would definitely recommend it. I think it's perfect for people who want an easy summer read, but can't bear to let go of the dystopian genre. 

I give this 
because I think that it was good, but not one is my favourites. If you're looking for something warm and fuzzy, but not to shallow then this is perfect!

Have you read The Selection? Do you like it when very different genres are combined? Let me know in the comments!



  1. I definitely liked the Selection! I was actually surprised I did...I thought I'd be a bit more "eh, meh" towards it, with all the fluffy girls and the kind of Bachelor like competition. But it was fun! America was awesome, although to be honest, I didn't particularly ship her with anyone. *shrugs* I've yet to read the other 2 (I want to!) so maybe my opinions on shipping will change??
    Thanks for stopping by @ Notebook Sisters!

    1. You should definitely read the next two! They're a lot less fluffy, but still pretty fun. I agree with the shipping, in the first book I was a bit unsure whether I preferred Maxon or Aspen and didn't feel particularly passionate about either. But as everything got more intense, so did my shipping!

  2. Great review! I pretty much shared your same feelings although I had a lot of issues with the books. Regardless, they were fun and had me smiling sometimes too :) Also definitely agree that the introduction of the rebel movement and world building made it a lot better than if it just would have focused on the competition.

    1. I agree, there were certainly issues. But they were so much fun to read I am desperate to overlook the problems!