The Selection and The Elite by Kiera Cass

“True love is usually the most inconvenient kind”The Selection

I read this book for my own pleasure. Amazon was having a deal on it and it looked interesting enough to warrant me buying it. Another dystopian novel like Hunger Games, Divergent, Uglies. Though Uglies by Scott Westerfeld will always be my favorite series. He wrote the series long before Hunger Games came out and started this whole thing. So when yet another series came out I was hesitant to read it. I have felt over the past few years that YA(young adult) novels have been getting too young for me and dystopian series were all over the place. And I was SOOOO over the love triangle(though Uglies does have that as a plot) I wasn’t in the mood to read a young teenager love another but something happens and she falls in love with someone else and the other guy comes back and blah blah blah. I hated that in the Hunger Games. I didn’t mind it so much in Uglies because it was my first one. But to get back to my point (I have the problem of ranting), this one was different. The Selection surprised me. Yes it was set in the future, yes the main character was fighting to survive in an unfair world, yes she was in love with a boy, and another boy came along. But something changed. But I’ll get to that point soon.

The novel follows American Singer who is 17 years old living in Illea with her mother, father, younger sister and brother. Her family is pretty far down the totem poll (the caste system is a pretty awesome/unique idea) when the prince of the country becomes eligible to find a wife/princess. Illea has a unique way of picking out that princess. They have all the eligible ladies(just like in Cinderella) fill out a form to be chosen to be 1 of 35 girls to try their hand at winning the prince. Obviously America doesn’t want to do it but she fills out it out anyway and lo and behold she gets chosen. Now before she heads off to meet the prince, she has been in a secret relationship with a neighborhood boy for 2 years. They planned on getting married and such. But sadly, he is even further down the totem poll then she is and to marry down is not good. He gets upset and breaks up with her over stupid pride(which I found annoying for his reasons but teenage angst won’t go away) and so she goes to the prince heartbroken but with the knowledge of what love is. Now this is what I’m talking about!!! I was excited to see that happen. She fell in love, got her heart broken, knew what love was and knew that the best thing was to move on. I was ecstatic to see something new (now at that time I wasn’t expecting him to show up again but alas my dream was crushed) and to see her be strong in the wake of such betrayal for her. So she goes on to the palace and learns to become a princess, makes friends, eats the food and befriends the prince. Her heart slowly starts to mend but NOOOOOO! The first boy came back. Of course he did. I rolled my eyes at this and wanted to shake her silly. (I have this image in my head of me shaking stupid characters in the books I read that piss me off).

So by the end of the first book I was a little disappointed that this was going to be another love triangle. I was hoping for her to be a stronger character on her own and to have loved and moved on and found another. Isn’t that what happens in reality? (Maybe just in mine?) But I guess we read these books to escape our reality(I do) but at the same time I don’t think I ever want to be in a situation where I have to chose between two boys(men in my case). Not only does America have to chose between the two but there’s so much more at stake. So after reading The Selection I had of course have to finish the series and see what happens next. Luckily enough, my library has online books and The Elite was available. I downloaded it and started right away. I hate when you have to wait a year to read the second installment because by the time it comes out I have forgotten everything from the previous book.

So…The Elite. At the end of The Selection, the prince(he does have a name, Maxon, which is lame) has narrowed down the girls to 6. The other boy(Aspen) has come back into her life and now she has the difficult decision of choosing Maxon or Aspen. Not only that but she is still competing with the other girls for Maxons affections.But each boy has their downfalls but other stuff that I haven’t gotten into has happened and now has escalated. Of course when you have a dystopian novel you have to have some kind of rebellion. This is no different. It started in The Selection with small attacks but now the attacks have escalated but no one knows why. America has also started to wonder about her world and how unfair it really is. This book was slow as most second books in series usually are. It’s more of a transition from the first to the third book. Rarely, do the sequels actually have a point besides moving the story along. America has asked for time from Maxon to decide what she wants but she doesn’t have time obviously, it is a competition. She has also been seeing Aspen on the side which she doesn’t tell Maxon of course and you KNOW that’s going to bite her in the butt. (Again, I want to shake her silly). Near the end it started to get good with a secret that Maxon has been hiding his whole life and American possibly coming to terms with what she really wants but still not quite sure. So now I am on the wait-list to read The One.

I hope that the series comes to a nice conclusion unlike the Divergent series (which I have not read but I did Wiki it). I don’t know if I will try another dystopian YA novel for a while unless something really exceptional has come out. I have other books that I NEED to read for reviews so my pleasure reading list might be put on hold until I’ve finished with them.

“You know that you’ve found something amazing, and you want to hold on to it forever; and every second after you have it, you fear the moment you might lose it.”- The Elite

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