This review can be found on my blog https://booksnacksblog.wordpress.com/
The Selection had one of those qualities where you pick up a book, read a few chapters, then tell yourself you will stop after a few more. And a few more. And a few more. And a few more, just until you’re finished. I can’t pinpoint exactly the ‘why’ this happens, it just does. But it could definitely be attributed to (for me, anyway):
-Plot. This book is categorized as a dystopia and romance, but other than the caste system, and a government/royalty ruling over a country, and rebels, The Selection is not as much a dystopia as a romance. But that was all right with me. The romance part of it was just so sweet, and the story was written in such a way I just got wrapped up in it.
-Love triangle. I really enjoyed the love triangle. Say what you will about love triangles, the love triangle in The Selection really worked for the good here. It added more complexity to the plot and characters, not to mention that the love interests in the love triangle are swoon-worthy characters! Maxon’s sweet and caring nature is really cute, and Aspen’s ‘protecting the damsel’ thing works for him too (although I’m Team Maxon).
-Characters. America was a strong female lead, though she has her faults. She comes off as a bit whiny in some parts, and her confusion between Aspen and Maxon was also a bit annoying some times, but overall she was a good protagonist.
At the end of the book, I was dying to know more. Luckily for me, the second book, The Elite was released by the time I started reading The Selection, so I didn’t have to wait long to jump on the next book! If you like romance in a dystopian setting, love triangles, and an unputadownable (even though that’s not a word) book, The Selection is definitely a recommended read!
This book was definitely different from most dystopian novels, more of a romantic dystopian. If you don't like books that focus mostly on romance then this might not be for you. With that being said, I LOVED this novel! I like that this novel takes place in the future yet the world has returned to some of the older ways. Everyone is separated into different castes from 1-8 which determine their jobs and success in life. America is a strong heroine who is doing the best she can to help support her family who is in caste 5. She eventually ends up joining The Selection in an effort to help her family out. Aspen and Prince Maxon are two completely different characters that both love America. Aspen is America's childhood love and I have to admit, not my favorite character. Prince Maxon on the other hand, is more than America imagined him to be and definitely my choice for the man that deserves America's love. The Selection competition is basically a reality television dating competition to marry the prince. Of course there is a lot of competition between the ladies entering the competition and that adds to the interest in the book. I think America's connection with Aspen is the only thing that annoyed me in this novel partially because I didn't like him and also because it bordered on obsessive. This book ends on quite a cliffhanger that will leave you anxious to read the next one to find out what happens. I definitely recommend this novel if you like romantic novels with a dystopian feel to is.
Of all the cheesy, eye-rolling and slightly heart-warming releases so far in 2012, The Selection is most definitely my favourite! Though it's not a literary masterpiece - it should be read with the expectation that you will be entertained, and nothing more - it is a LOT of fun!
While there's no rose ceremony, the resemblances to The Bachelor in The Selection are striking! There's elaborate dresses, priceless jewels, a bunch of girls all vying for the love and affection (or money and crown!) of the same Prince, and the tension that only comes with fierce competition. There are definitely some over-the-top cheesy girl-bonding moments, but there is also a lot of suspicion and cattiness. I loved watching the tension reach boiling points, and how quickly the girls were sneaking furtive glances at one another and switching from friends to competitors.
America is an absolute sweetheart who's full of spunk. She's stubborn and opinionated and unafraid to show it. Her interactions with Prince Maxon made for some of my favourite scenes, as I never knew what to expect from her!
"I'm not fighting. My plan is to enjoy the food until you kick me out."
I kept waiting for her to change who she was, in order to both avoid hurting Maxon's feelings and to stay in the competition longer, but she stayed true to herself. It was easy to admire her tenacity and refusal to let her circumstances dictate her actions. Even though she made it clear to Maxon that their relationship was to be merely platonic, as she was still dealing with her feelings for Aspen, I couldn't help but hope for her to let her guard down and let Maxon in.
The dystopian elements are quite light - a futuristic North America wherein everyone is divided into a different caste based on their ancestor's ability to contribute to society - but the light world-building was a non-issue for me. I wasn't interested in how North America came to be Illea (though we are leaked information throughout the book about it's formation), or how everyone was divided into a caste (though, again, the answer is hinted at) because it didn't matter: I was so caught up in America's story, and how much I hoped that she would return Maxon's affections, that I didn't care about how they had gotten to where they were at. I am interested to see what part the rebels will have to play later in the series though!
The Selection is a light-hearted, fun and entertaining read. It's got a little bit of everything - the hope for a fairytale ever-after, a spunky protagonist, two boys to swoon over and a frosting of dystopian-like elements. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it, but would recommend it to anyone who was looking for a little mindless entertainment!
I enjoyed reading this book but was really miffed with the ending....I wanted to know and read more! The book reminded me a little of Matched by Ally Condie though I can't put my finger on exactly why. I enjoyed the whole love triangle, though I have the guy in mind who I hope America will end up with in the end.
The concept of the different castes was a great idea, though nowadays we don't have numbers that tell us where we are in our class/caste system it still exists.
The relationship between america and her little sister May is great and provides the book with some humour too.
America goes into the selection very reluctantly, and not interested in Prince Maxon and the crown at all. America literally joins the selection to put food on her families table. america thinks Prince Maxon must be a spoilt arrogant man, but her opinion rapidly changes when she meets Maxon and gets to spend some time with him.
So basically as the byline on the book says there are 35 girls, and 1 crown that they are competing for....let the fun and games begin! Of course there is lots of jealousy and bitchiness among the girls, regarding who the Prince will finally choose., though Maxon seems blind to these goings on. Some of the girls are there for the romantic element of falling in love with a Prince, some are there to gain themselves a better caste number, as all those who take part in the Selection leave as number 3's. Other girls are there for the crown and the power they think it will give them.
The girl who wins will become a 1 the highest caste number possible, her family will also be lifted up the caste system.
So for a girl like america that would mean her family would never be hungry. Her brother Gerad could choose to do whatever he wished, he wouldn't have to be an artist just because his caste number dictates he should be.
I love the cover as I would say it represents America in a beautiful blue gown
The book is well written with good descriptions of the palace and the surroundings as well as descriptions of the beautiful dressers that the Selection girls are provided with to wear whilst at the palace.
So did I enjoy the book? Yes Would I recommend it? Yes Would I read more by this Author/in this series? Yes I have to read books 2 to see what happens to America, and to see who becomes Maxon's Princess.
World’s worst character name goes to...*Drumroll*…America Singer! Congratulations Mer, you earned it. It took me pretty much the whole book to adjust to her name. And FINALLY around 60% they give a reason for why she was named America. Makes it much easier for me to deal with, even though it didn’t make me hate her name any less. Of course there’s much more to a book than character names.
The banter and conversations between America and Maxon felt fun to me. They sound like countless conversations I’ve had in my life. I read a few reviews that called the dialogue unrealistic and I just laughed. Maybe to you, but not to me.
My guilty pleasure has always been reality tv. I have a habit of saying oh goodness that show looks stupid, then proceeding to put it on and bingewatch the whole season. When I heard what this was about I was so excited, reality tv in a book? Count me in! I can see why people may have found the book unlikable or annoying but it was fun for me. It was my guilty pleasure in a whole new form. The contestants you root for and the ones you want to stab are in the book. And with the setting being a competition you always wonder if you can really trust the others.
My only big complaint about the book was how long it took to get a real description of how the world came into being. I believe it was at 63% before they explained everything that had happened to create the new world Illea. Up until that point I was like I love this, but how the heck did it come to this caste system and monarchy in what used to be the USA?
Even if I hated every other aspect of the book, which I didn’t, I would have still loved Maxon. He’s sweet, clueless, funny, and next in line to rule the country. I felt like another contestant who was unnoticed by the prince and was jealous of all the attention he gave to America. NOTICE ME MAXON, PLEASE!
Yes a lot of people stated that this is a book that’s all fluff, no substance. Sometimes that’s what I want. I had a terribleweek and wanted to enjoy a book, get lost in a world where I’m not cleaning floors and having back pain. And this book did that. I don’t generally pick up a YA reality tv-esque book when I want substance. Though I wouldn’t be upset if it offered that as well. So to sum up, this book brought me the relaxing evening away from my worries that I was hoping for when I opened it up.
The Selection was one of the books I wanted more than any others, because it's a dystopia and it has a completely gorgeous cover. Even though I actually don't like the fluffy dress (never been a ruffle fan), it still makes me stare, especially with the ice. Even now, I just got distracted staring at the cover. I think it's something about the colors and the textures to the dress.
Anyway, the description kind of made me laugh a little bit; I mean, it really does sound like a dystopian version of The Bachelor/Cinderella. As far as dystopias go, this definitely is pretty light fare. The society depicted here is a caste system as in olden days, with one's role in society determined by their occupation. Accordingly, women do not have much say in their lives and are required to remain virgins until marriage. Basically, this is a futuristic version of an ancient civilization, which is interesting, but, so far at least, the society really doesn't seem all that bad, although the attacks on the capital are worrisome.
The heroine, America Singer, is as one snarky reviewer pointed out a singer. Surprise. That reviewer deemed this a failure of originality by Cass, but clearly does not understand that historically many people, if they had a last name, had one that referred to their profession (i.e. the reason Smith is so common as a last name is because of blacksmiths, silversmiths, etc.). Research: it is a good thing.
Anywho, the writing definitely is pretty simplistic. Although I prefer complex sentences, I'm okay with Cass' writing. She can get away with it because the story is told from America's perspective. America, as a five (her caste), did not have a great education, so she might not think or speak in a particularly complex manner. Of course, I look forward to seeing Cass really show off her writing skills in later books.
Both Aspen and Maxon have their good points, and their moments that make me feel concerned. As yet, I am not declaring any sort of Team allegiance to either. So far, I suspect that Maxon would be better for America, but I'm not entirely sure that I like him better in general. Aspen definitely strikes me as more swoon-worthy, but Maxon's much nicer. Plus, he can afford to give her the tastiest food.
More than anything, The Selection actually reminds me of Princess Academy by Shannon Hale, which I would definitely recommend to anyone. The Selection is a fun, absorbing read. Will you like it? Well, it's going to be made into a CW television show, and I think it will be a good one (which I know I'll be watching), so if that doesn't appeal to you, The Selection might not either. I, personally, will be looking forward to book two.
First of all, this review was NOT influenced by childish behaviour of anyone, nor was it by all the bad publicity it got. It's just me being honest. Secondly, if you read this book and liked it you will not like this review... Just thought I should let you know.
The cover really tricked me into reading this one. I read some negative reviews of it, and there was a lot of commotion around this book. I wanted to know what they were really talking about, so I decided I should read this book. And I did. And I think I should get a price for finishing it, because it was horrible, aweful, eye-bawling bad.
Also, I wanted to read this book because it was "The Bachelor meets The Hunger Games" Well, Hell no it wasn't! How dare they call this book anything like The Hunger Games. I'm not the #1 Hunger Games fan, but this book certainly wasn't anything like it. I don't really like the Bachelor, but I have watched some episodes. Maybe even an entire season. It had no rose ceremonies or something, and that's the thing that I really like about the Bachelor.
I usually like dystopian books, and this one was referred to as dystopian. While reading it, I was getting more confused by the page. Where was the dystopian bit of this book?? I was looking for it. But it was nowhere to be found. That really sucked. Cass made some poor attempts, a caste system, which doesn't seem dystopian at all. It's just today's reality, only a little bit exaggerated. Then there is this new country, Illéa, which is the new USA. There have been 2 more world wars. It is extremely strange, after the 4th world war, it would be strange if there was anything left on this world, right? But well, no way I will call this book dystopian.
The main character is called America Singer. What a stupid name is that! All other character names were
'normal', which is pretty strange, considering this book was meant to be dystopian.
Also, America was a very flat and stupid character, and a very disappointing female protagonist. Let me explain it by the means of a random quote: "Would Maxon want me to change? Was that why he was off kissing other girls? Because there was something not quite right about me?" Quotes like me just make me want to bawl my eyes out, multiple times. Girls should be strong and independent, not whiny and stupid. I will not even start talking about Maxon, just to keep this nice and prevent me from having to censor this review... :l
The plot of this book -series?!?!- didn't amuse me at all. I was so glad I finished it. And how on earth does the author manage to write so many words about so little?! She can write a whole trilogy about NOTHING AT ALL!
The way it was written was very immature and basic. Something happened, a thought popped up, it gave me a feeling, I did this. This made the book even worse to read.
So, please, if you want to try this book you should check it out in your library or borrow it from someone, but please don't buy it for your own sake. And remember, this is just my own opinion, I am all right with you if you like it. I'm just being honest.