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the selectionWhat: The Selection (The Selection #1) by Kiera Cass

Who: HarperTeen

When: April 24th 2012

How: Borrowed from library.

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.

3cats2I had heard a lot of things about The Selection before reading it. I had read negative reviews, glowing reviews, mediocre reviews. And, to be honest, I just wanted to see where I would fit in with these thoughts on The Selection. I wanted to read the book, as well. Of course.

I liked The Selection. For me, there was nothing horrible about it, nor was there anything superbly fantastic about it. It was good enough to have me read it in one day, but not good enough to have me fall in love with it.

I think the characters are what drew me back from this novel. I wasn’t a particular fan of America. Besides the fact that I didn’t like her name, I thought she was pretty shallow, and thought quite highly of herself. SPOILER Towards the end of the book, she says she won’t choose between her two love interests for her. Uhm, I’m sorry. So you’re just going to string these two guys along, for you? That’s kind of ridiculously selfish, if you ask me. END SPOILER Whilst there isn’t anything wrong with accepting the fact that you’re good-looking, admiring your own beauty is a little too self centred for me. For this, and a few other reasons, I simply could not gather up any especially warm feelings towards our main character.

Or her two love interests.

I thought Maxon was shallow. In personality, that is. I thought it was unbelievable that he would have fallen for America after she yelled at him, and kicked him in the groin etc etc. And his ‘adorkable’ speech felt REALLY put on. I didn’t think it was cute, I actually kind of thought it was lame. I know there are people who adore this guy, but I just can’t see why. He’s pampered, naïve, and kind of annoying. Sure, there were some pretty cute moments with him in them, but the fact that he’s still off kissing other girls whilst proclaiming his feelings for America ticks me off.

In the beginning of the book, I was ALL TEAM ASPEN. I thought he was cute, and I loved the fact that he wanted to take care of America, and his family, and all that other stuff. And then pride reared its ugly head, and I went off him. Like, dude. Please. All she did was buy you dinner with her money. HER money. She can do whatever she wants with it, and if she wants to freaking make you a dinner, EAT IT FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY. Don’t yell at her and then break up with her. Jerk. And the thing that happens towards the end of the book – totally saw that coming. But it was still kind of cute-ish.

There wasn’t a lot of spotlight on any of the other characters, except for your token bitch, and the token nice girl. Celeste (beeatch) could have been a lot worse than she was, and Marlee (nicey) was alright. Nothing particularly special about her. For me, anyway.

The whole book was focussed a lot on dresses and makeup and girly things. I thought this was okay, since that’s what the Selection is all about, but I would have liked some depth in there, as well. I mean, the whole ragamuffin attackers thing could have been explained a bit more, and the castes were really interesting but kind of took a backseat. Nonetheless, I am still looking forward to The Elite.

© 2014, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved.

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Posted on: November 19, 2014 • By: Chiara

24 Responses to Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass

  1. I had fun with reading this one. It doesn’t require too much thought, you know? But UGH, Maxon’s whole “my dear” thing was so annoying. I did like America, though (despite the name…why does everyone in this book have an awful name???).

    • Chiara says:

      That’s true! It was a nice easy read. Yeah, I found Maxon in general to be very annoying, haha. At least you liked America! And yes, I have no idea what is going on with the names in this book …

  2. Great review Chiara! I too have heard some really differing opinions on this book, from one end of the spectrum to the other. I guess it’s expected that it will be ‘fluffy’ in places, but I can see how it would be nice if it did have a bit more depth to it. Either way, if I see this at the library I’ll definitely pick it up :)

    • Chiara says:

      Thanks, Eugenia! :D I always find it interesting when a book gets both ‘loved it’ and ‘hated it’ reviews. It always makes me want to read it heaps more than a book that only has one or the other.

      I hope you like it if you do end up finding it at your library!

  3. I didn’t hate it but I didn’t like it either. I didn’t like how the story portrayed like novelty (no pun intended) by being the “different” girl, when in fact she wasn’t. It offered basically nothing for me. :(

  4. Olgia says:

    Agreeing with you on this one. It was all kind of meh for me. I didn’t mind but I also didn’t really care. Not the biggest fan of these kinds of books.. :(

  5. I think I read this a year ago, but some of the characters were just annoying. All I can remember though is that I DID enjoy reading this book despite the flaws. I’m definitely going to read the next three books and see who America picks. Lol I also don’t like her name. I think it’s weird to name someone America.

  6. I did not ship anybody in this book. o.O I know that’s a little crazy, but reeeaally? What kind of boyfriend tells his girl to enter a MARRIAGE competition?!! HELLO. Stupid stupid stupid Aspen. And I agree that Maxon was totally shallow and full of himself and ugh. So basically I shipped America with…nothing. I did love her! But I hated her name. It was totally ridiculous. How can you set a book in America and CALL the character America?!! SO CONFUSING.
    I do need to finish this series…especially when more are coming out…

    • Chiara says:

      I don’t think I really cared enough to truly ship America + anybody, to be honest. I simply did not like her enough to want her happiness. AH, SO CRUEL OF ME.

      I hate her name. I pretty much hate ALL the names in this book.

      BUT THE ENDING OF THE ONE IS RUINED BECAUSE OF THE TITLE OF THE FOURTH. I MEAN “THE HEIR”. IT’S OBVIOUS WHO SHE PICKED NOW.

  7. alicia says:

    HAHAHAHA i read this book as a joke and it lived up to its role xD i’m not in support of any character of this book because umm they have not done anything to win my respect as yet?

    i think America’s insipid personality is perfectly suited for all the girly things this book deals with (why bother even labelling it as dystopian lol it’s like every girl’s fairytale), but i have no idea how they’re going to make this into a SERIES? i was pretty shocked that it became a trilogy and WHAAAT now there’s going to be a 4th book?? *FAINTS*

    • Chiara says:

      I don’t think there’s a lot of respect for people in this novel at all, so I can definitely understand your lack of support, Alicia!

      Yeah, I think the “dystopian” edge was to make it more interesting, because those themes were really not there at all.

      The fourth book is apparently about America’s kid, who is a girl, and has MEN in a competition for her hand in marriage. Which i don’t understand at all. Surely America would have abolished that awful tradition??

  8. Alise says:

    Yeah, I feel pretty much the same about this book. They are somewhat guilty pleasures, like reality TV almost :P I also thought Maxon was being really stupid and shallow, especially when he would tell American one thing but still mess around with the other girls. Although the next books do focus a little more on the rebel plot, I disliked The Elite more than this one because America still couldn’t make up her mind. Glad you somewhat liking these so far though! I’m actually looking forward to the fourth book xD

    • Chiara says:

      Yes, haha! It was like reading a really bad reality TV show XD

      Yeah I had no love for Maxon or America AT ALL.

      I have read The Elite, and I must say I am not a fan, and I don’t have any real desire to read The One or The Heir, haha.

  9. Ahh, your review is spot on. From a critical point of view, this book (or rather, this series), doesn’t have a lot going for it. However, I enjoyed it because it was light, somewhat fun and a quick read. I hope you enjoy The Elite more than I did, for me that was when I started noticing more of the negative points you mentioned here. It was also when I found America to be as annoying as most people said she was. I keep getting The One out of the library and never reading it…hopefully I’ll read it before the release of the next book. Speaking of the fact that this is no longer a trilogy, I don’t have any strong feelings towards that anymore, but from what I’ve read, I don’t think it’s necessary.

    • Chiara says:

      It was a light fun read – perfect for the day I read it.

      Ah, I have read The Elite and WOW it was awful. Whilst I could somewhat overlook the bad aspects of this book, I just could not forgive them in The Elite. Which makes me not exactly keen to read The One – especially since I know the ending.

      The fourth book is about America’s daughter, apparently.

  10. I completely agree with you! The characters were all rather selfish and annoying in general. Funnily enough, I gave this book a really high rating because it was just all really entertaining. I hope you enjoy the next books! Celeste and Marlee are nothing like they seem. ;)

  11. So sorry to burst your excitement or whatever for The Elite, but that was so much terrible than The Selection… For me at least. I did mostly enjoy The Selection but got annoyed at the same things you did. But The Elite.. ugh. Every annoying thing was magnified. Maxon was unbearable, America strings the guys along even more, there’s so many things I could rant about but won’t because I’ve blocked them from my memory! Yet inexplicably I still want to read The One. (Is this what being addicted to terrible TV shows feels like?)

    In any case I hope you have better luck with The Elites than I did.

    • Chiara says:

      I read The Elite ages ago and I hated it. It was SO BAD I JUST COULD NOT. I wrote a really snarky review that I still haven’t decided on publishing or not XD

      I want to read The One, as well, even if the ending is now ruined due to the announcement of the fourth book.

  12. I think this would book end up being a typical 3-star book. Nothing too special, but also not too bad. The only thing that bothers me is that there are two love-interests and lately, I’m so tired of that.

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