Erica Chilson's Reviews > Uglies

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
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's review
Jan 03, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: digital, dystopia, nook, young-adult, 4-star, paper

Uglies was so close to getting a 5 star rating from me. A few issues made me drop a star. The main issue that I had a very difficult time to get through was the dialog. I understand why it was written the way it was, but that didn't make it any less annoying. My eyes wanted to bleed every time the words UGLIES & PRETTIES were uttered. A few times they dominated the entire paragraph. I know the main reason behind this was the there were two factions in Tally's world at the time. I, however, do not say man/woman or say someone's skin color in every sentence that I speak or even as internal dialog. Such as: American Man/American Woman then their name. It was extremely redundant and annoying. These words were the biggest offenders Uglies, Pretties, Littlies, Rusties, Specials. This almost stopped me from reading, making me miss out on an enlightening storyline.

I also want to mention that I am not sure a teen would get the concept of the moral Westerfeld is trying to express. I don't think they have the capacity to see it, while they themselves are borderline living in an Ugly/Pretty world. As an adult, I obviously picked up on this immediately. I'm not sure what the best way was to fix this issue. You would have to practically write the moral out for the teen to grasp it while this would result in dumbing it down for the adult. I guess I would say that this is an adult book set in a teen's world, if you can put up with the juvenile thinking. I don't think I am explaining this properly. I believe a teen would see the relationships between the characters but not the underlying meaning of the premise.

I read this book, fast. I didn't want to put it down. I will say that there were times that the book dragged or it felt as if the characters were repeating scenes we previously read. I was interested in the storyline to read through these sections because I hungered to see what happened next. The last quarter I could not put the book down, I had to know what happened. The ending was a perfect set up for the follow up installment, Pretties

This book was a great start to the series. There was no info dumpage, the descriptions were not overpowering. If you can get past the redundancy of the wording, the voice the book was written in was very smooth. It was interesting how Scott Westerfeld wrote a female protagonist, I might add, very well. Having a Male author eliminated all of that ridiculous tween heartthrob internal dialog that makes me want to never read the YA genre. I don't understand it, maybe because, even being a female, I never was a boy crazed idiot. This is one reason I fell in love with the Dystopian fiction genre, less boy crazy girls and more independent thinking ladies. There is a romantic undertone to the story, but it is so subtle that it's refreshing.

I loved the premise of the story. I won't explain it in case you are reading reviews to determine if this book is for you. I will be vague, so the ones who read this book will know what I am writing about. The flowers, they represent so many of the things that we screw up in our world and I loved the symbolism of something so beautiful(Pretty) can be destructive. The view the Uglies/Pretties have on the Rusties is ingenious and a little disconcerting to read knowing that it is in reference to today's people. All of this also shows how easy it is for our governing body to brainwash a large section of people and the lengths they will go to to stop the independent thinkers that will end their ignorant world view. Going back to my previous statement about most not getting the underlying theme of the storyline, I noticed that many reviewers stated the environmental issues in the story. I believe that is the smallest point of the story. The biggest being that no matter what we believe is right for our world, we are wrong. It is a delicate balance between each and everyone of us along with technology, nature, and evolution. A delicate balance that will be impossible to reach.

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Reading Progress

January 3, 2012 – Shelved
January 18, 2012 – Started Reading
January 18, 2012 – Shelved as: nook
January 18, 2012 – Shelved as: young-adult
January 18, 2012 – Shelved as: dystopia
January 18, 2012 – Shelved as: digital
January 18, 2012 –
page 45
10.59% "I'd like a word counter for *Uglies* *Pretties* My eyes are bleeding. It's a good story. This detracts from it. I'm not kidding, Maybe 10 times in one paragraph. I hope it lessens or I will have to give up, missing out on a fantastic premise."
January 19, 2012 –
page 378
88.94% "Almost finished and I want to dive into the next book in this series! I will flinch every time I hear certain words for the rest of my life. Pretty sure it's worth it tho. "Pretty" *cringe* "Ugly" *flinch* This may be a problem when someone eventually compliments me."
January 19, 2012 –
page 378
88.94% "Almost finished and I want to dive into the next book in this series! I will flinch every time I hear certain words for the rest of my life. Pretty sure it's worth it tho. "Pretty" *cringe* "Ugly" *flinch* This may be a problem when someone eventually compliments me."
January 20, 2012 – Shelved as: 4-star
January 20, 2012 – Shelved as: paper
January 20, 2012 – Finished Reading

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