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Saturday, May 4, 2013

Book Review: The Elite (The Selection Trilogy #2)



NOTE: If you haven't read The Selection, book one in this trilogy, be aware there may be spoilers for it. Also, feel free to read my review of book one instead so you don't spoil it for yourself.


Release Date: April 23, 2013
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: HarperTeen
Length: 323 pages

The hotly-anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestseller The Selection.

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Iléa.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

Review:

Protagonist: The America we saw at the end of the previous installment, the one who when prompted by Aspen who she chooses said, "I choose me." is sadly missing at the beginning of this installment. During the book it seemed like her only choice was Aspen or Maxon, and that it would be a choice that would define the rest of her life, and in some ways it did. However, I held out hope that we would see this strong and confident America again, whose choice wouldn't define her as much as it would amplify who she already is.

Romance: I really tried, you guys. I really tried to like Aspen, and as many of you may know I don't like to pick teams. That being said this is a special circumstance as I cannot stand Aspen in this book. I feel that throughout the book he is selfish and narrow-minded, preying on America's insecurities and doubts about Maxon and herself, to get a leg up in the struggle for America's heart. I'm not saying Maxon's perfect by any stretch of the imagination, he like everyone has his own flaws, that being said I don't think he'd be as calculating as Aspen is with America's heart/

World-Building: The stakes are higher as the Selection winds down. There are moments of pure terror and moments that are full of joy and celebration. We learn more about Ilea's past and how it came to be formed. We learn why the caste system was put in place and who it was made to protect. We also discover terrible secrets from a few of the main characters. America learns what taking the crown and becoming the next princess and if she feels ready for that kind of responsibility.We find out what the Northern rebels may be looking for as well as getting a new villain in addition to the Southern rebels.

Predictability: I have to say predictability-wise I was kept on my toes. I would always see trouble around every corner only for it not to come. I would think the worst was about to happen when it wasn't. Sure there were a few moments here and there I saw coming, however for the most part I felt kept in the dark about many of the twists and the outcomes and consequences of those new developments. I love that I couldn't get a handle on what was to come next as it made those moments all the more enjoyable.

Ending: The ending held so many emotions in such a small amount of pages. As things wind down from the final climactic scene, so many things happen, some that make me smile, some made me laugh and some made me want to magically enter my book and throttle several characters. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger and it's not too agonizing though the ending doesn't in any way plateau like the previous one. I can say this, I'm secretly happy I didn't get this book in advance because it would be far too hard to wait so long for the next installment.

Rating:



This book was great, though not as great as the first installment. I didn't like America's fickle heart and Aspen's manipulations of it. That being said it was still amazing and sets the stage for what could be a magnificent final installment in this breathtaking series. If you loved or even liked the first installment, this one won't disappoint, though it may cause moments of blinding rage at various characters.


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1 comment:

  1. If you liked the selection you'll love this! Fun easy read. Couldn't put it down and finished in a day. Can't wait for what's next!
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