|Image and Synopsis from Goodreads.com|
Title: The Selection
Author: Keira Cass
Genre: Teens, Young Adult, Distopia, Romance
Published: April 24, 2012
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.
But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.
Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself—and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined
Kiera Cass is a talented writer, that bring unique and imaginative story lines, characters, and worlds to life. The premise of this book is a wonderful change from other dystopian novels I have read recently. And although there is a competition of sorts, as in other books, the selection brings a unique twist to the genre.
The Selection, although a dystopian Young Adult book, is decidedly different from other dystopian books I have read as of late. The world Kiera Cass creates in this story is a post war united states, much like in other books. Similar to Hunger Games or Divergent, the country has been divided into different sections, however, in this world, these sections are known as a persons "Class". Being first class means you are a who's who of the rich and famous, and being a class 7 or 8 means you are the bottom of the barely getting by with minimal to no income, or you are completely poor, homeless and forgotten by the rest of the world. Those in the lower classes are typically the servants, hired help, or hired entertainment for those in the higher classes. Though the classes are not divided by great walls or long distances, and the people can seemingly intermingle, it is clear that the classes are decidedly separate from each other, and crossing from the poorer classes into the higher classes (or vise versa) does not happen often, and when it does there is a distinct difference between the people, buildings, and area in which the change occurs. The world, its class divisions and set up, is very intricately done, and very well set up, with it's own unique backstory and history that will slowly be revealed as the story goes on.
The first book in this series, is filled with so many different characters it can be hard to keep them strait. you are first introduced to America Singer, her family and best friend, and just as you get to the beginning of how her life is, the selection actually starts, the book plot kicks in and a whole new slew of characters are thrust at you as America is forced to leave her family to take part. Although there are several characters taking part in the selection, and introduced in such a short period of time, each one has a unique quality to them that helps them stand out from the rest.
America Singer, our main character is introduced first, and as the story goes on her character stays strong throughout. Although I found her to have started out strong, and in certain situations I, at times, thought she had faltered from the character she started as, her decision or actions in some situations seems off for her character. There were enough of those moments for me to wonder if her character was going to continue to grow in this book, or if she was going to throw away who she was and concede to what others thought she should do or wanted her to do. There were times that I was confused by her actions, or her thoughts and feelings. As the story goes on, the situation either changes, or she rectifies these actions on her own, which was pleasant to see.
The plot moves slower in the first half of this novel, picking up close to the middle and keeping up a steady pace for the rest of the book, but it does not detract from the overall story. A lot of what happens in the first portion of the novel is introductions to characters, the world, the situation the main characters are going to be put in, the history of the world created for this story and so much more. There is an abundance of information and set up in the first few chapters, and as the story goes on, the information is revealed and the plot kicks in, everything gets that much more interesting!
This book has a colorful cast of characters that you will love, hate, and so much more! Once the story starts to take of there is a steady moving plot, interesting and intricate back stories, not to mention a little bit of teen angst, lust, and even a few cat fights, this book is definitely worth giving a try, there is a little bit of everything for everyone! Once you get through with this book you will want to read the rest of the series, you will want to know what happens next!