After pledging to desperately try and maintain this blog, I just didn’t. I mean, I don’t even have a good excuse. I did spend last weekend at the ALA Midwinter Conference in Philadelphia (um, awesome) but that was one weekend. What about all of the other weekends?! Slash the rest of the days that were spent reading book and watching copious amounts of Netflix but not blogging? Ugh.
However, I’ve decided to start back up again with a post about a book about which I could not make up my mind.
The Selection by Kiera Cass, is the first book in a trilogy. It’s a story about America Singer, a teenage girl who lives in a society of castes which are determined by your family’s occupation. Her family is a level 5 meaning that she and her family are artists. Not rich by any means, but certainly not lowest of the low. The book’s entire premise is centered around competition- between selected girls in the kingdom- to marry Prince Maxon. 35 Girls are chosen and they head off to the castle to fight for his heart. America is one of those girls, but her heart already belongs to Aspen, a lowly 6 who is destined to remain in poverty. After pretty much ending their relationship because he believes she is better off without him (a very Downton Abbey-Bates-esque move), America heads off to the castle to compete with the other girls.
So, this series has been described by various reviews as The Hunger Games meets The Bachelor. Naturally I was all “MUST READ THIS NOW.” Plus the cover is freaking awesome.
After about 50 pages, however, I still was not sold. I thought the writing was weak and the relationship between Aspen and America to be annoying. Then America arrived at the castle. The writing still left much to be desired, but I began to allow myself to get lost in this “dystopian” world. I put dystopian in quotations, because this particular dystopian scenario wasn’t as fleshed out as I would have liked. It was really just about the dating competition.
Having said that, I really, really liked friendship between Maxon and America. I mean, the writing still seemed weak, but the actual relationship was believable. Most of the scenes in which they were the main focus, were just them having conversations- legitimately getting to know each other. By the end of the book, I totally believed that America could potentially fall for this guy. And better yet, that is exactly what she thought as well. She wasn’t all “Oh em gee I love this guy and I must lust after him alllllll the time.” No, she simply acknowledged that there was a chance that he could win her over.
Of course, freaking Aspen had to miraculously show up and be her guard or whatever, but, to me, his character is so weak that I just think there’s no way America can ever choose him.
So after being extremely skeptical for almost half the book, I ended up totally falling for this book, and immediately purchasing the second. I heard that the second book is even better, so I’m hoping that along with the plot, that Cass’ writing develops into something that doesn’t have me cringing every-so-slightly.