by Kiera Cass
Released: April 24th 2012
Genre: Fiction - YA: Science Fiction, Dystopia, Romance
How I got it: Bought
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.
Review: I have to admit I probably never would have read The Selection if I hadn't joined a book club that was reading it. I'm really on the fence about this one. I liked aspect, and didn't like others.
America frustrated me. She kept claiming she wasn't princess material and yet she kept doing things a leader would do. I found her to be strong, smart and likeable, yet her dealing with Aspen irked me. I didn't like Aspen, who is her first love. Something about him rubbed me the wrong way. Even if she didn't win the Prince I still didn't want her to end up with Aspen. I think that's why the ending made me so upset I kind of glossed over the last few pages. I didn't mind the cliff hanger, but I'm probably not going to read book 2 either as this just isn't my cup of tea.
The plot once America got to the castle was basically a reality show. I know many folks compare it to the Bachelor having never been inclined to watch I'm not sure. Prince Maxon was likable enough, and I liked how Ms Cass actually worked it so that the relationship between Maxon and America grew slowly. I have to say I hope that America comes to her senses and picks Maxon over Aspen. I felt Maxon truly cared for her while, I felt Aspen had alternative motives.
Another reason I probably would have never read this is I'm not a hug fan of dystopian books. For me the world building in this was eh, a lot was well developed yet some was left unexplained. I think, not 100% on this but I think it may have been intentional.
Ok my over all impression of The Selection is mixed. I feel the characterization was good, the romance aspect was good (although not crazy about the love triangle), but the plot and world building could have been developed more.