Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass
Author: Kiera Cass
Series: The Selection #1
Publication Date: 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. (Cover and synopsis from Goodreads.)
An Attempt to be Unbiased…
I LOVED this cover when I saw it, and automatically wanted to read it, no matter what. Yeah, we all judge a book by a cover sometimes. And then I heard the controversy over this book and one of its reviews, and I have to admit, that did make me a bit hesitant. But I knew I still wanted to read it and so I tried to go into the book as unbiased as possible. There was a chance I’d love this book, and there was a chance I’d hate it, and there was a chance I’d think it was okay. Just like with any book, really. Luckily, I ended up really enjoying it. I also met Kiera Cass recently and she was a total sweetheart.
An Iffy Start…
That’s not to say I didn’t have my problems with this book. It started off with me having more problems with the book than parts that I enjoyed, but they were mostly little problems, not huge things. For instance, the names in this book are kind of annoying, especially the fact that there are at least 3 characters with some form of the name Amber. But it’s set in the future, and more and more parents are naming their kids strange names with weird spelling so I guess that’s to be expected.
Also, it was kind of convenient that even though America didn’t want to enter the Selection, her parents wanted her to and her boyfriend, Aspen, basically forced her to enter. And don’t even get me started on Aspen. He was just such a goody two-shoes and I was already tired of him by page 50. I mean, I value putting other people before me and thinking of their needs before mine. I think that’s a great virtue. But Aspen lets people walk all over him and he just seems to be this guy with a hero complex who has no other qualities whatsoever. And yes, there are people like this in real life and like I said, I strive to put others before myself and I think kindness is the highest virtue but there really doesn’t seem to be anything else to Aspen. I am totally, 100% Team Maxon. In fact, I wanted Aspen to die in this book just so she could grieve and then MOVE ON.
But I did have a few issues with Maxon, as well. I think Cass made him talk the way he talks and use phrases like, “my dear” to make him sound princely, but when he calls America “my dear” it just makes me feel like he’s an old man talking to a young girl. It really annoyed me. And maybe that’s what she was trying to do, since America really hates it when he calls her that, too.
But I Squeed With the Best of Them…
I have to admit, though, even though I had problems in the first parts of the book, I was sucked into this story. Reality TV shows like The Hills and America’s Next Top Model are guilty pleasures of mine and this just fit that bill in book form for me.
I loved the cat fights, and I ended up loving Maxon even though I still don’t like him calling the girls “my dear.” And I really enjoyed learning about the world that they live in, and I liked the political subplot. And I also love the decision America makes near the end in regards to the two boys. I don’t want to go into detail because of spoilers, but I think it was a nice change, because we normally don’t see that with love triangles.
My rating for The Selection by Kiera Cass:
Actually 4.5 stars. I went into this book trying to be as unbiased as possible, and when I finished, I found myself really aching for the next book, The Elite, which I have since bought and will be reading VERY SOON.