A.M.'s Reviews > Pretties

Pretties by Scott Westerfeld
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's review
Jun 14, 2012

liked it
bookshelves: 2012-challenge-list, young-adult-childrens
Read from June 11 to 14, 2012

I did not find Westerfeld's second installment of the Uglies Trilogy nearly as compelling as the first. Pretties took more than 100 pages to get remotely interesting and was a bit sloppy in its presentation (i.e., in the final third, a backpack and supplies that were lost are mysteriously back in use with no explanation).

Westerfeld spends more time than necessary describing life as a Pretty. Pretty speech is reminiscent of Valley Girl, and halfway through the book, the word "bubbly" had the same effect on me as nails on a chalkboard. The reader gets introduced to Tally's new life and new boyfriend, Zane. We are also initiated into the life of "Crims" - a special sect of Pretties who like to play tricks and live on the edge (basically, rebellious Pretties).

Tally's nemesis, Dr. Cable, makes her appearance, borrowing heavily from The Matrix's Agent Smith: ". . . humanity is a disease, a cancer on the body of the world. But we . . . Special Circumstances . . . we are the cure." Given she tempts Tally to join the Dark Side of Special Circumstances, she plays a good Vader, as well.

Suffice it to say that Tally does not stay satisfied with her charmed life and seeks adventures out in the wild. There is a love triangle and another best friend blow-out as Tally's life gets increasingly complicated by best laid plans going awry. Westerfeld attempts to tie this novel together by a recurring dream of a princess being locked in a high tower with mirrors, yada yada yada. We've heard this one before.

So will I invest anymore time in this series? You betcha. I only hope Specials wraps things up a little neater.


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