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.
I found the world to be pretty interesting, and I liked the idea of a caste type system and a monarchy used in a dystopian USA, but I didn't really understand how it came about. There was some explanation throughout the book, but it didn't give me enough information to really get it, if you know what I mean. To be honest, it was actually really confusing. Like, say, a six. How did they come to be slaves and servants, based on what their grandparents were? Because, well, how were they picked? We have people who cook and clean as a job, but no one who's really a servant for a living. (At least, no one that I know.) And the fives, the entertainment? The people who entertain for a living are usually not starving. Just, everything was so screwed up that I just couldn't help but question the very foundations of their caste system. Every single bit of it was questionable, in my opinion.
America was an okay character, and I liked how she was fierce, but there wasn't much else to her. And I can tell you right off, that if she goes for Maxon rather than Aspen, I just won't be able to respect her. Trust me, as much as she talked and thought about Aspen... I'd go for him.
I've seen a lot of mentions on the names used in The Selection, and I have to agree. They are pretty ridiculous. Aspens are a type of tree, and it's ridiculous to have a King Clarkson. Not to mention the fact that America Singer is in fact, a singer. And living in America. I'm so proud of the creativity employed here. *sarcasm*
But in spite of the goofy names, and the world-building flaws, it really was a good read, mostly for the light and fun stuff. It reads kind of like a contemporary romance book, and you all know how much I adore those. If you think you can get past those problems, I would give The Selection a shot.