Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page)'s Reviews > The Selection

The Selection by Kiera Cass
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As soon as I saw the cover of The Selection, it grabbed my attention and made me really want to pick it up. Once I did pick it up, read the blurb and saw Kiersten White's quote on the back, describing the book as a mix of "dystopian and reality TV", I was completely sold to the idea of this story and knew that I'd have to give it a try. There are a lot of dystopian-themed books out there and some have been disappointing, just trying to follow in the footsteps of The Hunger Games. Thankfully, this book was different and just left me wanting more!

The Selection centres around Prince Maxon of Illea and his need for a Queen. A group of thirty five girls from all over Illea, of different castes (classes), are chosen to attend The Selection where Prince Maxon will choose his desired partner. The Selection is also filmed as a reality TV programme so that the country can follow it all. Our main character, America Singer, is selected as a potential Queen and we follow her as she discovers her fate.

At the beginning, we're given a rough introduction to Illea's caste system, something that I found very, very interesting. Though she isn't right at the bottom, America doesn't live a privileged life as a 'Five' and finds herself struggling. America is also having a secret relationship with Aspen, a 'Six', someone who is even further down the ladder than her and has an even more difficult time trying to live in poor circumstances. I found the start of the book to be fascinating and it really set the scene of the book. Though we don't get to learn things in detail, we are given a good idea of the state of Illea and the impact that the caste system has. Throughout the book, we do get to learn more about society and how Illea came about, though there is room for development as the series continues.

I warmed to the characters and found them endearing, although they were slightly predictable. Aspen plays a large role in this story, though he is absent for quite a significant portion of it. I found him interesting and strong and know a lot of people will like him. Of course, Aspen isn't the only love interest though - there is Prince Maxon who America is meant to fall for and want to become his wife. I can definitely see there being split sides with readers, some being 'Team Aspen' and 'Team Maxon'! Although Maxon isn't ever completely open, unlike Aspen, he is very intriguing and does seem to have a good heart - the only trouble is America's feelings. I thought that the love triangle was engrossing and I am looking forward to seeing who America chooses in the long-run - I honestly am not sure who she will choose.

Other characters in this story include America's family who seemed quite realistic, though her mother was a bit selfish! I loved hearing about America's little sister as she was just a big bundle of energy and acted like a real little kid. It'd be interesting to see if Kota, America's older brother is mentioned again too - it seems like he is a character that has a lot of 'story' behind him. Of course, I can't forget to mention all of the girls at Maxon's palace too - I can't deny it, I loved the girlish, bitchy drama between them all!

I will admit that there aren't many surprises in this book, but that didn't bother me in the slightest. I think there was actually a certain sense of comfort in sort of knowing the format, where it was going and just sitting back and enjoying the story without trying to criticise it too much. I am also so pleased to finally read a dystopian book that isn't just a complete bloodbath! Where there is the terror of potential attacks and also near-successful attacks on the palace, it wasn't very eventful or event-upon-event which can become overwhelming. I actually got so relaxed and engrossed that I was up into the early hours reading this one! My advice for this book is to just chill. Don't try and analyse it for imperfections or plot-holes, just enjoy the reading experience - I know I did! I'm really looking forward to book 2 which will be definitely going on my wish list.
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Reading Progress

January 24, 2012 – Shelved
May 15, 2012 – Shelved as: books-i-own
May 15, 2012 – Shelved as: arc-or-review
June 5, 2012 – Started Reading
June 5, 2012 –
page 1
0.3% "Here goes!"
June 5, 2012 –
page 1
0.3% "Here goes!"
June 6, 2012 –
page 44
13.1% "Not over analysing this book, so I'm enjoying it so far."
June 7, 2012 –
page 168
50.0% "Really enjoying this actually."
June 8, 2012 – Finished Reading
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: young-adult
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: title-appeal
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: series-or-companions
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: really-good
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: realistic-fiction
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: read-in-2012
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: sci-fi
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: dystopian
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: cover-appeal
June 9, 2012 – Shelved as: better-than-expected

Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)

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Let me know what you think!

Donna {Book Passion For Life} I did the same thing Stephanie and loved it! =)

Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page) Loving it so far! I don't really see why there's so much dislike for it. :)

Jess The dislike is mainly from the way the author and her agent acted towards a blogger. Check out Wendy Darling's review for this book for more info on all that.

Donna {Book Passion For Life} Yeah I tried to ignore all the author/blogger drama because I wanted to give the book a fair shot and it's really good. =)

Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page) Yep, I'm doing the same as Donna - reviewing the book and not the author so it's going well!

Mimi Valentine Oh, I'm glad! I think I have a copy of this coming from the library soon since my own got stuck in the mail, but I can't wait t read your thoughts on it! :)

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