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The Selection (Selection - Trilogy) by Kiera…
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The Selection (Selection - Trilogy) (edition 2012)

by Kiera Cass

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1,5461954,750 (3.78)51
Review by Sliced Open Reviews

Note: adding book to my fav reads of 2012!

While I could use so many words to describe this book, but I won’t flood you with one word descriptions...so here we go.

The Selection gripped me from the opening chapter, I *accidentally* started reading this at work while getting my Nook library organized and it was the biggest *accident* I could ever make. I read chapter 1 one while sitting at my desk on lunch, and then, almost went into hysterics while waiting for 5 o’clock to come so I could go home and get my Nook and curl up on my bed and read. I did just that and was so angry when it ended. I don’t just want book two I NEED it, with a need so bad that I’m not sure how I will make it to next year, but I will try.

Kiera Cass floored me, her writing and relationship building was by far some of the best I have seen in some time, and with this book she is defiantly making my top loved authors list. When I read the blurb a couple months back I vaguely remembered it until it popped up as downloading on my Nook (I know Kiera you can kick me for that later).

I usually HATE love triangles in a book, but I almost think Kiera Cass took everyone’s feelings into consideration while writing this, she didn’t make your typical, girl likes boy, boy likes girl, girl finds other boy she likes, other boy likes girl, and OH NO boy hates other boy. While she does follow some of that, the book wasn’t centered on it, it was the building of Relationship between America and Aspen and America and Maxon, which is how it should be. Dare I say, Cass did the love triangle right, YAY!

This was not your typical Dystopian novel, while we are used to being tossed into the horrible society in a dystopian and the carried away through the characters life and learning and growth in their said society, this novel shows you how the society works but then you follow America through her journey in the “Selection” so little to no grueling battles or fiery towns or running from the law, which is not a bad thing, it was actually quite refreshing if you ask me!

So now I am going to go scream from the roof tops that everyone should go out a buy this book and read it, then, they too can go scream from the roof tops, this may hold us all over until the next book...Well Done Kiera, well done! ( )
  KimberlySlicedOpen | May 20, 2012 |
English (194)  German (1)  All languages (195)
Showing 1-25 of 194 (next | show all)
For thirty five girls, the selection is a big deal, but not all girls are the same. It wasn't supposed to happen to her. She didn't wanna be here in the Palace. She didn't want to be apart of the selection. But, here she is at the Palace finding out day after day if she has what it takes to be, the princess of Illea. America Singer lives in a time of caste systems and kings, queens, prince, and princesses. Maxon Schreave, prince of Illea, Maxon held his own selection in hopes to find love. Instead he found America Singer. America was different from the others. She didn't want to be there, but she stayed anyway. As the book goes on and the war continues Maxon's love for America grows. America's love for Maxon grows, but can 34 other girls get in the way, or will she make it to the elite.

The selection is one of my favorite books ever. I love how America goes in not wanting to do the selection but instead she might have found love? This book is full of drama and always keeps you wanting to know more. I rated this book a 5 out of 5 because it is very well written and there is always a suprise, whenever you think something good is gonna happen something (or someone) always ruins it but that's not always the case. There are alot of cliffhangers that only leave you wanting more. I guess well just have to wait to see what happens in the next book, A.K.A The Elite. ( )
  JadeR.G1 | May 22, 2015 |
This version of USA is astonishing and very original.
America is the typical adolescent girl, or maybe just my kind of adolescent girl, she's red-haired, super beautiful and super smart and doesn't care with her appearance more than she should.
She and Aspen are two people in love that are departed from each other by distance and fear and I feel that it also happens with a lot of young couples.
When she participates in the Selection and meets Maxom, while she's trying to get over Aspen, America realizes that she might fall in love again.
I loved this book and it's one of my all time favorites. This series is so involving and original I want to read these books over and over again. ( )
  anaesteves | May 21, 2015 |
This version of USA is astonishing and very original.
America is the typical adolescent girl, or maybe just my kind of adolescent girl, she's red-haired, super beautiful and super smart and doesn't care with her appearance more than she should.
She and Aspen are two people in love that are departed from each other by distance and fear and I feel that it also happens with a lot of young couples.
When she participates in the Selection and meets Maxom, while she's trying to get over Aspen, America realizes that she might fall in love again.
I loved this book and it's one of my all time favorites. This series is so involving and original I want to read these books over and over again. ( )
  anaesteves | May 21, 2015 |
This version of USA is astonishing and very original.
America is the typical adolescent girl, or maybe just my kind of adolescent girl, she's red-haired, super beautiful and super smart and doesn't care with her appearance more than she should.
She and Aspen are two people in love that are departed from each other by distance and fear and I feel that it also happens with a lot of young couples.
When she participates in the Selection and meets Maxom, while she's trying to get over Aspen, America realizes that she might fall in love again.
I loved this book and it's one of my all time favorites. This series is so involving and original I want to read these books over and over again. ( )
  anaesteves | May 21, 2015 |
**Fair warning right now, this is a review(ish) or a review-lite because I'm not sure I'm able to get things together enough on this book for what I'd call a review with nothing stuck on the end of the word ;-) **

The Selection is probably the most talked about YA novel (aside from maybe Cassandra Clare's novels) outside of book sites, lately. In both positive and negative ways. Some of the talk has undoubtedly been started by things other than the content of the novel (some drama by the editor and/or author and the possible TV pilot) . . . but a lot has also been about the book.

I'll admit that seeing a lot of really positive early reviews got me really excited for this one . . . that and the super gorgeous cover (what can I say, I'm a sucker for a pretty cover).

. . . Then some of the 'I-hate-this-book' reviews started to show up (or they were always there and I just don't follow those people on Goodreads or didn't look hard enough).

Any book that can draw such mixed reviews had me intrigued (again, just my Goodreads friends/those I follow - Goodreads as a whole has pretty balanced reviews 5 stars - 37%, 4 stars - 33%, 3 stars - 18%, 2 stars - 6%, 1 star - 4%).

So, I gave it a shot.

Described as The Bachelor or Cinderella meets The Hunger Games by the editor or blogs, I actually didn't see much, if any of The Hunger Games in The Selection. The Bachelor? Sure. With the one guy dating thirty five girls, that's kind of a given. Cinderella? Yeah, with disadvantaged (singing, even) girl becoming like a princess overnight.

Actually, though, the book reminded me a lot more of Wither. The whole set up of Illea in the beginning of the novel reminded me of the world Rhine was living in. It only reminded me more of Wither more once the story got going.

Wither had the different girls all living in a house and married to the same man, The Selection had them dating him, in Wither Rhine promises to despise him, in The Selection America's going to hate Maxon and just play along for a bit, in both the girls wonder if their feelings are changing.

That's not to say The Selection copies Wither, at all, just that it's what it reminded me of . . . and why I can't quite figure out why The Selection didn't work for me. Something about America just rubbed me the wrong way throughout the book.

She didn't seem like a real character, one that you could connect with. In the beginning she seemed obstinate just for the point of being difficult . . . then she'd start to give some and being difficult would kick in again. She just didn't work for me.


If you want to give The Selection a shot - like I said, a lot of people did love it, I'm just not one of them - do know that this is very much an introduction-y Book I. It doesn't end on a cliffhanger, per se, but it's the most prequel-like first book in a series I've read lately.

(If you read all of that, or even most of it - I love you!)
  BookSpot | May 18, 2015 |
To start off, I will say that I liked this book more that I thought I would. I was originally looking for a book for a reading challenge (needed blue covers) and just happened to see this at the library and figured it didn't look too bad and that I would just read it since nothing else was working.
I will admit, the concepts are not very original. The ideas that is is in between The Bachelor and Hunger Games (in the dystopia sense)is fairly accurate, with heavily leanings on The Bachelor. The love triangle setting adds a bit extra to character complexity.
I will not say much on what the books is about. The summary already does that in itself on this book. The book is written from America's perspective and what I will say otherwise is what I thought. First, I must admit, I dislike the character names. Yes I know the last names refer to what the person does, but the first names are horrid in my opinion. Yet the main thing is the writing style and pace. I literally laid down last night thinking I would read a few chapters. Next thing I knew, the sun would be rising soon and the book sat finished in my hands. I don't get that with many books anymore. This book made me giggle at times, and twitch in anticipation at others. It left me desperately craving the sequel. Wondering who she picks, or who Maxon picks,what is up with the other girls, etc.
So, while the concept is not original, the characters are interesting, and the story is written in a way that is easy to get wrapped up in it. I actually just put it back on hold at the library so I could skim through it once again before them next book comes out. I read it so fast I fear I might have missed things. I honestly had a hard time rating this. In the way in captured my attention once I started reading, and my desire to read it again I would normally say 5, but since it does lean SO heavily on the concept of The Bachelor. So, I give this a 4. ( )
  jljaina | May 16, 2015 |
I had to stay up all night to finish this book, but not for the reason you think. The plot does a good job of hooking you, but very little happens, and I was waiting for something exciting to happen. I didn't even realize when the climax of the book had occurred until I checked the page number. While it is a good premise, I did not feel that there was much risk being taken. The main character wasn't taken out of her comfort zone other than to leave home. In fact, she embraced leaving since she was angry at Aspen. Climaxes require the character to be knocked off balance, which America wasn't. She felt like a Mary-Sue with a slightly more developed range of interests. The world was not very developed, and the villains (Celeste and the rebels) remained either two-dimensional or faceless. It felt as though someone had taken the part of "The Hunger Games" where Katniss is made presentable in the Capitol and expanded it.
There was no meaning to the story. The only thing that comes close to showing a hidden depth is the classism between the girls. The rebels were fighting the government for some unknown cause, and America briefly wonders why there are no history books.
The part I found hardest to accept was that she determinedly says that no boy owns her and she is her own person, therefore rejecting the love triangle, but proceeds to agonize over her choice. I was tempted to buy the other two books because it didn't feel like the story had even come close to ending and I was curious about how the story would play out, but I changed my mind because of the plot holes and dramatization. ( )
1 vote furieous | May 11, 2015 |
I really enjoyed The Selection. To me, it was like a cross between The Hunger Games (without the fighting to the death) and Mean Girls with a bit of Cinderella mixed in. I felt there was a lot of similarities to The Hunger Games. Even the castes seemed very similar to the Districts of The Hunger Games. Even so, I couldn't help but really enjoy myself whilst reading and I couldn't stop turning pages. It was a nice, easy quick read.

The events of The Selection are told from the point of view of America Singer. I felt that the plot was somewhat predictable, i.e. the whole girl torn between two very different boys. However, despite this I felt that the plot moved forward at a nice pace and Kiera Cass dealt with a multitude of different characters very well. Of course, being part of a series the story didn't completely wrap up at the end but I'm definitely going to read The Elite.

I also liked most of the characters, the exception being Celeste and wish we got to know more about them all. But there is fairly a lot so I understand that wouldn't have been the easiest and many aren't actually featured in the story for very long.

I felt so sad for America when her heart is broken but she shows that she can be strong and work her way through the heartbreak. She is probably the nicest girl to be Selected, apart from Marlee. She doesn't speak down to her maids like the other girls and treats them as equals even though they are a caste below her. Unlike the majority of the other girls, she knows what hardship and being hungry is. However, I do find her name a bit silly. She is also quite whiny and immature but what teenage girl isn't at at least some point.

I also really liked Maxon. I think he has quite a naive quality to him due to probably having quite a sheltered life so far in regards to struggles of those in the lower castes. I also found him quite adorable as well as quite witty in places. I loved his interactions with America. It was sort of like he just wanted someone to talk to. There probably wasn't many other boys (or even girls) his age around the castle for him to interact with before.

I do like Aspen... BUT he is an idiot! For instance, he says to America:

"I'm supposed to be providing for you."

UGHH!! I mean I wanted to strangle him for having such an old-fashioned view. There is nothing wrong with a woman providing for a man.

I can't wait to read more of America, Maxon and Illia. I really want to find out what is in store for them next especially in regards to the rebels. So it's safe to say I will be reading The Elite as soon as I can.

Although The Selection is a dystopian novel, there is a lot of romance involved therefore I would recommend it to teenage girls who are fans of romantic novels. It is a really easy read and I believe it could potentially be enjoyed by older girls but the language is fairly simple and there is a lot of whining and bitchiness to the story. ( )
  MyExpandingBookshelf | May 4, 2015 |
An easy and entertaining read. The first love triangle where I'm rooting for the second love interest (Prince Maxon @_@). Nothing original, but definitely fun.

For my full review visit my blog here (but beware because there are some spoilers: http://brittanysbookrambles.blogspot.com/2013/03/the-selection-review-spoiler-al... ( )
  bpress | Apr 20, 2015 |
I started this book one evening before bed, and ended up staying up until 3 am just to finish it. It was that good. It's not a literary masterpiece, but sometimes it's good to just read a light-hearted page-turner!

This is a dystopian novel, but the dystopian aspect is not way "out there." There is some political unrest in the country, which I'm guessing will play a part in the next couple of books, but it wasn't heavy, a la Hunger Games. Basically, it's a Cinderella-type version of "The Bachelor" with a little love triangle thrown in for good measure. I loved it. I loved the characters. I can't wait to see how it all plays out. (That being my only, common, beef -- that it's part of a trilogy, and therefore not a stand-alone story in one book). ( )
  lauraodom | Apr 16, 2015 |
Plucked out of her life, America Singer reluctantly participates in the Selection, a competition where thirty-five women try to win a spot in the royal family as Prince Maxon’s bride. Cass tries to make the unfortunately named America Singer spunky, special, and a protagonist to root for; whether or not she succeeds is up to the reader. The Selection has been accurately referred to as a cross between the Hunger Games and The Bachelor, only less so. Cass continually lowers the stakes throughout the plot: Maxon verbally guarantees America a spot in the final three of the Selected and the women who are sent home enjoy elevated social status and do very well. The reality television aspect of the competition is slight and the elimination of Selected women happens mostly in a few large anti-climatic events, abruptly ending the first book in the trilogy. The Selection is a more intellectual read than watching an entire season of a Bachelor-type reality show, but only just. The Selection is best suited for readers looking for a light escapist read involving a royal palace, descriptions of pretty dresses, and a romance with (the slightly awkward) Prince Charming. Recommended for ages twelve to sixteen. ( )
  Jessie_Bear | Apr 15, 2015 |
Oh my gosh. Okay, so this book is completely and totally best described as "The Hunger Games" meets Jane Austen. I don't really know how else to put it.

Let me start by saying that this book is completely outside of my comfort zone and I am so glad that I stepped outside of my little box and read this one. This is by far one of my favorite reads of 2013 so far. Whether it will stay there is going to depend on what else I read, largely, but it definitely has set the bar VERY high.

I read this book in less than 24 hours. That should tell you something. I absolutely loved the word that was painted. I wish that we would have gotten a little more history about why things were the way they were a little earlier in the book, but the information does come out slowly.

I was completely and totally mad at Aspen for the way events changed, and I cried and laughed along with the characters as the story played out. And Celeste? Well, she needs to be ...she needs to go home. That is all I can say and still be polite!

I cannot wait to read The Elite, and will be sitting down here momentarily to read that book because I just have to find out what comes next. There is not much more I can say without spoiling the book for someone, so I will leave you with this: Read this book. You absolutely will not be sorry. ( )
  destinyisntfree | Feb 28, 2015 |
Oh my gosh. Okay, so this book is completely and totally best described as "The Hunger Games" meets Jane Austen. I don't really know how else to put it.

Let me start by saying that this book is completely outside of my comfort zone and I am so glad that I stepped outside of my little box and read this one. This is by far one of my favorite reads of 2013 so far. Whether it will stay there is going to depend on what else I read, largely, but it definitely has set the bar VERY high.

I read this book in less than 24 hours. That should tell you something. I absolutely loved the word that was painted. I wish that we would have gotten a little more history about why things were the way they were a little earlier in the book, but the information does come out slowly.

I was completely and totally mad at Aspen for the way events changed, and I cried and laughed along with the characters as the story played out. And Celeste? Well, she needs to be ...she needs to go home. That is all I can say and still be polite!

I cannot wait to read The Elite, and will be sitting down here momentarily to read that book because I just have to find out what comes next. There is not much more I can say without spoiling the book for someone, so I will leave you with this: Read this book. You absolutely will not be sorry. ( )
  destinyisntfree | Feb 28, 2015 |
I first became aware of this book while looking through the giveaways page. I wanted to read it so much that instead of waiting for it to come to the local library I went out and purchased it.

The cover art is beautiful. I enjoyed the book. It was a quick read, but I wasn't as excited with the way this book ended. I know that there is *hopefully* going to be another to follow it, but I wish the author hadn't dragged America's decision all the way into the second book.

I would say that the fact that this book came out during the height of the Hunger Games buzz is going to help sell this book. Now it isn't the same by any means, but I see definite similarities, girls entering a Selection process to become the princess, having to compete with other girls. Set in a dystopian land where rebels are attacking. Then the love triangle between America, Maxon, and Aspen. I'll be waiting for the next book to see how it all turns out.
( )
  PrescottKris | Jan 26, 2015 |
Ok it isn't the best book in the world. The writing is too simplistic; the story isn't even that unique. The characters and setting lacks depth. Despite all this things this book is SO ENTERTAINING!!! I couldn't put it down. I was really interested and I loved the love story aspect. This book is a quick book to read and if you are in the mood for a fun light read pick it up! ( )
  KatesReviews | Jan 24, 2015 |
Once again, I'm late to the party when it comes to a relatively popular book. I actually purchased this in May 2012, shortly after its release, but I've gotten to the point where I won't start a trilogy until the final book is nearing publication or already published. Otherwise, I forget a lot about the prior two books, and I usually end up having to re-read them to remember.

Hmm. So I'm not sure who thought that this was "The Hunger Games" (one of my favorite book series EVER) meets "The Bachelor." I've never watched an episode of "The Bachelor," but I vaguely know the premise, and this book is a heck of a lot more like "The Bachelor" than "The Hunger Games." It might be marketed as a dystopian YA novel, but I was hesitant to label it that on my own shelves (I ended up doing so, but it took me a while to commit). There are a few mild dystopian themes - a bizarre caste system that makes little to no sense, a monarchy in power instead of a democracy. the United States of America no longer existing (replaced now with the Kingdom of Illéa), some nameless rebels that seem intent on taking down the monarchy for no explained reason except they don't like the monarchy, etc. But when push comes to shove, I don't see much of a dystopian edge to this book.

It's probably because the world building is minuscule at best (this is my major problem with the Divergent series, as well). There's a random "history lesson" thrown into the middle of the book, which tries to explain to the reader, I suppose, what exactly went down to create Illéa, but I really think it muddles things up more than explains them. Other than that, the reader is supposed to just suspend all belief, rationality, and critical thinking skills and just believe whatever the author spoonfeeds the reader. Sorry, I don't work that way. I want to know why, why, why, and I want those answers to make at least some sense, thank you. But the answers in this book are few and far between, and to make them make sense would take some crazy suspension of logic.

Why, for example, is there a rigid caste system in the former USA? Granted, they are at least a few generations removed from a functional democracy, and apparently history is not the Kingdom of Illéa's strong suit (the "instructor" says, at one point, that history isn't something that should be studied but known - and apparently owning a history book about the USA is something, inexplicably, Not Allowed), but still, doesn't ANYONE remember what the United States was like before the Third World War (in which China invades the United States and makes the country its bitch)? Didn't grandmothers and grandfathers pass along stories of "how it used to be" to their grandchildren? Heck, America's family is kind of like the Illéa version of troubadours - don't they have ballads in their repertoire, ballads that are set in the past? No? Why not? The United States was a melting pot of ideas, with over two hundred years of democracy and individual rights, with people standing up for themselves. How does this get erased seemingly overnight? How are these ideas completely lost from the social "memory" of Illéa?

The caste system, at any rate, makes no sense. Even America's young brother, Gerad, hints at this. Gerad is born into the "artist" caste, Five, so he has to find some form of art he's good at eventually. But he's a typical kid, and he just wants to play ball and look at bugs. Why is it because some ancestor of his was good at art, it is assumed that all of that man's progeny will be good at art? Once again, welcome to the land of "this makes no bleeping sense."

And what do the other castes even DO? The Ones are apparently royals; the Twos and Threes are higher ups, but no one really explains what they DO (except for America making some aside that, since she is now a Three since she is part of the Selection, she'd like to be a teacher). What is the real difference between Twos and Threes? Fours work in factories and farms; Fives are artists/musicians/etc. Sixes are servants. Sevens...I'm not sure. I don't think this was ever explained, either. Eights are homeless. So there are three castes out of the eight that the reader has little to no knowledge about, and yet the caste system is Very Important! And if the caste system IS so important, WHY do they allow intermarriage between the castes (including the monarchs, hence the Selection in the first place) and people to "buy themselves up?"

And that leads, sort of, into the monarchy system itself. Apparently, kings and queens have come back into style BIG time since the takeover and collapse of the USA. I'm not sure why, except that it adds drama and excitement to the story for younger readers who don't really care about examining the story in depth. I mean, come on, this story is set in some vague future. Monarchies are dying out in the world today; most of those that do exist only do so as figureheads and not real leaders with real power. And yet the United States, born out of a struggle against an overbearing monarchy, with "no king, no monarchy" thrumming through the veins of the social conscience in America, somehow decided that, hey, maybe monarchy might work after all. Riiiiiiight. Please explain to me how this makes any sense at all. And apparently the former United States, now Illéa, isn't the only country that thought this was a good idea. The King and Queen of Swendway (what a name that is, haha - I assume it's some weird conglomeration of Sweden, Finland, and Norway?) appear to have power, and the royal daughters of Illéa are married off to other monarchs to cement the fragile peace between Illéa and those other countries. But Illéa doesn't take the chance to make more connections with their sons; instead, for some inexplicable reason except Because That Is The Way It Is, those sons marry into the "lower castes." Once again...why?

Well, it's not like the royals are all that smart in the first place; in fact, I think they're probably in the running for the Darwin Awards at some point in their lives. There are, presumably, two groups of rebels who keep trying to (and often successfully do) storm the castle - the Northerners, who are slightly more peaceful and less bloodthirsty, and the Southerners, who are there to kill, destroy, and rape. It isn't exactly clear how long America is in the castle during the book (several weeks), but she sees more than one rebel attack during this time. Damn, those are some mighty puny walls if they keep getting breached all of the time - so badly, in fact, that during the last attack mentioned in the book, the rebels are actually IN the castle and IN the Selected's rooms. So why hasn't someone gotten the bright idea of, oh I don't know, actually building a castle that does more than look pretty? They still have electricity - ever heard of an electric fence? How about building walls so high that they're almost unscalable? How about a moat filled with piranhas or something? Come on, feel free to get a little creative. Metal window shades are obviously NOT working, and neither are the plethora of guards running around the castle.

So, not surprisingly, Prince Maxon is rather an idiot. Part of that, I am sure, is the fact that he's kept in the relatively-easy-to-invade castle for most of his days and isolated from others - so much so, in fact, that he was apparently ignorant that some of the castes have it bad. I mean, geez, come on, you know that there is a WHOLE CASTE THAT IS HOMELESS (Eights), but he figures that they have enough to eat or something. Seriously, he's that dumb. How swoonworthy is that? He's also rather a moron when it comes to dating girls, but that's probably to be expected, since, once again, he's kept relatively isolated from others. In fact, America is his first kiss. So I can forgive him for being hopelessly naive when it comes to dating. As an aside, though, how skeevy is it that Prince Maxon keeps running around calling all of the girls "my dear" and smooching them? Ick. No thanks.

But what really grinds my gears when it comes to Prince Maxon is his insufferable attitude. Yes, he's naive. Yes, he's a royal, and so probably more than a little spoiled and pampered. But his search for a wife is horribly self-centered; he's only concerned about how she will fit into his world. He doesn't seem to care much about her, except that she must love him. And, heaven forbid, she actually has her own opinions! He does, actually, do something when America brings it up to him that there are people out there starving. But when she tries to tell him that Celeste is a viper in the grass, he goes off on America and tells her that he makes the rules around here, so she'd better watch her step. Seriously? I'd be packing my bag and telling him where to shove his attitude.

But Prince Maxon isn't the only one who comes off as a shade misogynistic; in fact, he's one of the "better" ones. Sigh. This whole world is solidly misogynistic. Girls can't have sex before marriage; if they're found out (by ratting, caught in the act, or pregnancy), they are often sent to prison (there's mention of this in the beginning of the book). And Aspen, America's love interest, is a turkey and a half. When America manages to save enough money to buy him a feast, he flips out and breaks up with her because he's the man and he's supposed to be spoiling her. No thank you, no "oh my god you are awesome," no "I love you because you did this for me," no "I am going to take this home to my sisters and mom so they can share in this too." Nope, he man, America woman, America bad. Ick.

But don't worry - America herself is rather insufferable as a character, so I didn't feel TOO bad for her. She is also quite self-centered, and she's one of those horribly cliched characters. She's sooooooo beautiful, but she gets mad when people tell her she is, because she really isn't! And she has suchhhhhhh a hard life (even though her family has a television set, electricity [most of the time], a way to make a living, usually enough food [and enough that she can pass on whatever leftovers remain to Aspen], tea with LEMON [she lives in the former Carolinas, so I am going to presume those are imported from another region], etc). She's also apparently really bad at math, because she seems to think that if she enters the Selection, she'll win. Her mother is also bad at math, because she thinks the same thing.

And what, exactly, is with America's name? The reader is told, right around the weird "history lesson," that the people of the United States of America didn't want to go back to that old name because it had a bad connotation. Or something. Once again, that's not well explained. So they picked Illéa, after a private citizen who helped them win the Fourth World War (don't ask...there really aren't any answers for you). So, why, then, would ANY mother name her child America if that is how the name is viewed in the new Kingdom of Illéa? That's like naming your kid something along the lines of "turdface."

I also don't care for America's attitude. She's a Five, and she loved a Six (who is a member of the servant class), but she seems to think that her maids, all Sixes, just live to serve her and the royal family. Which, I guess they do, but America seems to think that this makes them genuinely happy. Umm. Look, I work in a service-oriented career, and I cannot tell you how many times I have put on my Stepford Wife smile and mentally cursed most of the human race in my head. I am sure real maids would be the same way.

Also, the lack of diversity seriously sucks. There's one brief mention of one of the Selected having ties to New Asia (but it is not clear if she just KNOWS people, if she is related to someone, or what, and it definitely isn't clear if she's actually of Asian heritage or not), but other than that, everyone seems to be pretty damned white. Please. This is the former USA we are talking about, and apparently part of it is comprised of Hondorus and Nicaragua (and then, one could further assume, at least part of Mexico, because how hard would it be to have all of these random pieces of Illéa in North America without any connection at all to one another?). Why isn't there one girl of colour in the Selection? Is there racism as well as caste-ism in Illéa? Honestly, I wouldn't be too surprised at this point.

So, basically, if you can look over all of the glaring contradictions, plot holes, and contrivances, you might be able to enjoy this book. Maybe. Especially if you like boring princes, misogynistic servant boys, and plenty of pretty dresses. I gave the book two stars because I did end up finishing it, and I may, if drunk enough, finish the series at some point in my future. But it was a hard slog. I need something more substantial to read now. ( )
3 vote schatzi | Jan 17, 2015 |
Wow. This was so bad it's funny. No, seriously. I don't recommend you try it, but I may keep reading these books. ( )
1 vote IsaboeOfLumatere | Jan 14, 2015 |
America is chosen to compete for Maxon heart in the selection. She must say goodbye to everyone, including her boyfriend, Aspen. America started to go on a lot of dates With Maxon and she seemed to like him. Maxon started to kick girls out. The castle got attacked a lot and a lot of girls had asked to leave. in the end there was supposed to be 10 girls but there ended up only being 6 girls. America is one of them.
This book was amazing. I think all girls should read it. I gave it five stars because it was one of the best books I have ever read. I wish the book was mine so I could read it over and over again. now I need to move on to the next book, which I think will be great. ( )
  HaleyC.B4 | Jan 12, 2015 |
Another dystopian young adult trilogy with castes and a teenagers opportunity to elevate her whole family from poverty... but at the cost of true love? ( )
  asawyer | Dec 31, 2014 |
Can't wait for the The Elite!!!!!! I've already started wishing my life away to get to 2013 to read the next book. ( )
  sjerrolds | Dec 15, 2014 |
"The Hunger Games" meets "The Bachelor"
  DaffiMere | Dec 13, 2014 |
(unknown level)
  mshampson | Dec 12, 2014 |
My friend Susan got two of these books and was nice enough to offer me up a copy. I read it last night in one sitting. As far as dystopian worlds go this one was pretty easy to grasp and understand. I liked the subtle shifts in world power that caused the creation of this new land. I also thought that this book has some Hunger Games undertones.

America is independent but not so far as to forget her family. I like that about her, she knows (or at least has a pretty good idea) of what she wants and does the selection only for her family (well, and Aspen's) sake. I enjoyed Maxon al ot, he was not at all the way I started out the book thinking he was. I fell more in love with him than I did with Aspen...even though they are both dreamy in their own ways.

The plot moved rather fast although I would liked to see Maxon get rid of more girls early just for things I felt they were doing that he shouldn't have put up with. I enjoyed the emotional growth between Maxon and America as well, it was slow and sweet.

On those very positive notes...I HATE cliffhangers...HATE HATE HATE! I am so tired of them I want to scream every time I read a YA book these days. Maybe this book ending could be called a happy-for-now but ti stops at a critical part for all the main characters and that is my definition of a cliffhanger. I will read the next one only because I am dying to know who Maxon chooses.

This book is a cross between The Hunger Games and The Bachelor. Decently written and engrossing. ( )
  mojo09226 | Nov 21, 2014 |
I loved this book. I just can't help myself when it comes to dystopian young adult books. America is a great character and Cass makes her feel like a 'real' teen - just one in a different world. I can feel America's uncertainity, and I feel the unfairness of the whole institution of selection, even if its not actually brought up in the book that much. But then again - by not talking about how weird/strange it is Cass really puts the reader in the world of Illéa.

I'm truly baffeled by the mixed reviews this book has recieved. I'm an adult who enjoys YA books, I read them because they are entertaining - that's it. Its a nice way to spend an hour or so. I'm not concerned with the moral or anthing like that - I want to be able to block out the fat man sitting next to me on the train while I commute. If you like YA distopian books and a good time read The Selection, if you take life too seriously then don't read it. ( )
  sscarllet | Nov 20, 2014 |
Much better than I thought it would be! I was reluctant to read this book for a long time because I didn't care for the concept of a bunch of girls fighting over a prince (I'm a feminist, thank you very much!). But a good friend highly recommended it and so I put myself on the (very long) library hold list for this book. It was a good read, very typical of the YA dystopian genre, but also very readable and with a likable narrator. I can't wait to continue the series! ( )
  wagner.sarah35 | Oct 26, 2014 |
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