“That was the truth at the core of everything. I didn’t know what I wanted yet, and I couldn’t let myself be swayed by what was easy or what someone else thought was right. I had to give myself time to decide what was best for me.”
-Kiera Cass, The Selection
America Singer is happy with what she has. Yeah, her and her family were born into the Fives caste. And yeah, her boyfriend is a step lower at the Six level. But America just wants to live the simple life. Five and Six are just a number and she’s already found the boy of her dreams. But has she really?
The Selection happens every time a prince of Illea needs to find a wife. Thirty-five girls between ages sixteen and twenty participate in The Selection, which is basically just like a season of The Bachelor. He wines and dines these girls and slowly narrows them down until he finds The One.
America has no interest in being the princes plaything. He seems cold, and rigid. Why give up Aspen for that? Even if he is below her caste and moving down a caste rarely happens. But when trouble in paradise happens America decides to enroll and to make the best of it. If not, just for the good food and for the money that gets sent home to her family. She soon realizes Prince Maxon is not the cold, boring suit she thought he would be. Could she actually love him AND get over Aspen?
There has been so much hype about this series for the past three years or so. SO.MUCH. I had to give it ago. I’m usually not the biggest fan of straight up romance, but I do love YA and I enjoy most dystopian novels.
The beginning of this novel was kind of slow for me. I did not feel very connected with the characters until the last third of the book. I know America is a teenager, around the age of 17 I am guessing, but she seems so childish in the beginning. Even though she cares deeply for her family, I just got a sense of childish stubbornness from her and it made me not like her very much. It was also hard for me to like Aspen, he seemed like such a horn dog! And I couldn’t tell if he was using her in the beginning.
Once America arrived at the palace I started enjoying the novel much more. I love her maids and Maxon. I like how stiff he is because he’s a teenager too and is learning how to juggle becoming regent one day and courting all these girls. America does stand out in the group of bachelorettes. She has a kind heart and her stubbornness turns into good. She starts to use it to stand up for what she believes in and I think she grows as a person.
To be honest, I didn’t miss Aspen at all. Good riddance! He just wasn’t my cup of tea. And I feel as if America and Maxon struggle with them things. They both just want to be true to themselves. She wants to get over her heartbreak and do whats best for her family. He wants to improve as a ruler and war strategist and find a girl who will love him back. I feel as if they are more cohesive than her and Aspen.
All the while, there are Northern and Southern rebels attacking the palace sporadically. It seems as if they are searching for something within the palace walls but the monarchy has no idea what for. They are also getting increasingly more violent with their attacks. I love this extra aspect of the book. It adds some suspense to the love story. It also makes you wonder if the monarchy will continue their love connection competition for their son or if he will just have to send everyone home eventually to keep them safe for the war that begins raging.
I gave this book 4/5 stars on Goodreads. I love the way it ended and I will definitely be purchasing the next novel.