Aug 16, 09
Read in August, 2009
The Uglies Trilogy contains three stories about the same character, Tally, as she finds her place in a post-apocalyptic earth. A biochemical weapon went out of control and invested the world's oil supply, destroying life in the process. Now, controlled cities with extreme rules on physical appearance are the name of the game. In the first book, The Uglies, Tally watches as all her friends turn 16 and get the extreme plastic surgery to become Pretties. As an Ugly, she can't wait. Until she meets a new friend that is considering an escape, from the surgery and the city. Tally is blackmailed into following her to the settlement of runaways called Smoke, and learns the truth about the Pretty operation.
In the second book, the Pretties, Tally struggles to come to terms with her new look and life in Pretty Town, the parties and the adventure, while there is still a nagging reminder of what she left behind in Smoke. In the third book, The Specials, Tally is recruited (and subsequently given superhuman bones, abilities, immune systems, etc.) to join an elite organization and root out dissidents once and for all.
Yes, it becomes difficult to figure out what "side" Tally is on in each chapter. Another difficulty is Westerfeld's obsession with hoverboard chases. Yes, hoverboards are cool and dangerous, get over it. Another frustration I felt towards Westerfeld was that the plot was too similar from book to book. There was so much potential for story in the world that he created, I just wished for more.
I don't give a book two stars lightly. I would recommend it to kids, for sure, its pretty cool. It will make an exciting movie.