At first, I thought I was going to be disappointed — I was prepared to be disappointed. After reading numerous reviews and seeing a lot of 1 star reviews, I wasn’t expecting it to be a decent read. So why did I even bother? I just wanted to, I mean, look at the cover! It’s gorgeous. I also wanted to see my own insights and reactions.
Let me put out now I was thisclose to putting the book down after reading up to page 20. It was a really stupid read: Ms Cass was writing anything, jumping to different scenes, and it was all too confusing. She also added unnecessary passages. The names were stupid, America Singer? Maxon Schreave? Honestly, why do authors think that, because they’re writing a dystopian novel, they could name their characters with weird names? She never explained the caste systems. Not to worry; after reading up to 145 pages, I get the drifts. So let me explain the castes to you before you pick up the book. Your caste system is based on your ancestor’s income.
Ones: You’re a royal; you’re filthy rich. Forget about starving, forget about shabby clothes, and forget about cleaning.
Twos: You’re living large; this is because your husband was in the military (from what I’ve read. Please correct me if I’m wrong).
Threes: You’re a normal citizen. You’re neither rich nor poor. You’re living comfortably.
Fours: The income is pretty low, but it’s enough to feed your family. The clothes are so and so. Not bad, but not good either.
Fives: You have to use your talents to make money. You have to work kind of hard and you’re barely making enough to feed your family.
Sixes: You’re a maid; you cannot refuse to help whoever (only from castes 1-5, mind you) ask you to do what needs to be done. Sometimes you miss out on food because you failed to make enough money.
Sevens: Sorry guys — didn’t read much on the Sevens. :/
Eights: You have no homes, no food, and you have to wear filthy rags for clothes. You can’t work.
With that being said, I hope it makes the first chapter not as confusing. Let’s begin with the review.
America Singer receives a letter to enter in the Selection to become a wife of Prince Maxon. Her mother couldn’t be more proud. So she pesters her daughter all the time to enter. America doesn’t want to go, she rather she’d stay at home with her secret lover, Aspen . . . a Six. It’s not recommended for someone to marry below a four, but can you truly help who you love? With America being a Five, she doesn’t see anything wrong with it. Unfortunately, things have to end between the two lovebirds because Aspen wants what’s best for America. He wants her to enter the Selection.
35 girls are picked (America included). They have to make the Prince fall in love with one of them. America befriends one girl; she’s the only one who would talk to her. All the other girls are throwing her dagger eyes. She doesn’t mind it, though. She wants to hurry and be done with it so she can return home. She used to hate Prince Maxon, but after meeting him, she sees some good in him and they become friends.
She doesn't want to marry him, but wants to be there for him and help him find a wife. I like their friendship. Maxon isn't a bad guy. The story reminded me of Wither by Lauren DeStefano, not The Bachelors. I don’t think the reviewers literally mean this is like The Hunger Games, just the fact that women from a lower caste has to compete to win the crown and Maxon’s heart to become rich; in The Hunger Games, people are selected from different districts to compete to win for fame and be drowned with riches.