Three things to mention:
1) This is a library book! Yay! I’m finally reviewing a library book!
2) This review is for Lisa. (You should read the book now!)
3) The author, Kiera Cass, is hilarious. If you’re a writer, go watch her YouTube videos. You won’t regret it.
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Wow. That was totally not what I expected. In good ways and not-so-good (which is the polite way of saying “boring”). I’ve heard mixed things about The Selection . What did I think? It was surprisingly brilliant.
Before I say anything else, though, the cover is gorgeous! I love the colours and I love the girl’s pose on the front cover. It really reflects the book! The dress is fabulous. It looks kind of like a peacock being blow-dried, but I love it.
Characters? Introducing, America Singer! The fabulous red-haired spunky narrator whose only fault is her name. Seriously, people, a character called “America”? At first, I thought, “Well, it’s dystopian, so they probably don’t have an ‘America’ as we know it today.” WRONG. They did have an America (the country). And they talked about it. It got jolly confusing. Plus her nickname was “Mer”, which sounds like a fin-less mermaid. Me no likee.
Apart from all that America was an awesome narrator. She wasn’t soppy. She had more on her agenda then smooching a boy. She cared about her family! (Even though her mother was pretty overbearing and bribed her into entering the Selection.) America was sweet and worked hard, yet had fiery temper and jumped to conclusions. She actually had a personality.
Basically this (complete with the hair):
Now, um, how do I put this? There is a love-triangle. But, wait! Don’t freak out! It’s one of the better love-triangles I’ve read.
In first place, with no qualifications apart from passionate-kisser, we have Aspen. Aspen is a dead-end. Sorry. It’s true. The Selection has a caste system. You get rated from One (awesome) to Eight (extreme loser). Aspen is a Six, so border-line-loser.
Other half of the triangle? Bring in Prince Maxon. Qualifications include, calling girls “my dear” (gosh that annoyed me), working hard, and being 100% endearing until he has a hissy-fit. I feel like he was written to be Prince Charming. Which is good! He’s well written! But, through all his endearing jokes and actions…it all comes undone for me when he doesn’t really value what America says. He thinks he knows better (because he’s a prince?). Maybe that’s not how the author intended it! You have to read it to find out for yourself.
Writing? I liked it! No fluffing around. America narrates in 1st person, and it was clear and easy to read.
Plot? In all truth, it was slow. I liked it and didn’t get bored, but I easily put it down. The plot spends a lot of time doing photoshoots and wearing dresses. The only action-y parts were when the palace was attacked. And that included everyone huddling in their rooms. Not very exciting. I liked the web of intrigue and who-really-loves me, but it wasn’t enough. It reads like a reality TV show, or a dystopian version of Miss Congeniality. But it is about a bunch of girl competing for ONE guy. Bring on catty attacks and feline snark.
All, in all, I definitely enjoyed reading this book! Awesome narrators always win big favours for me…and the fact that I was interested in the love-triangle and not cringing is a bonus. Book 2? Bring it on.