It doesn’t happen very often (never?) but I was so caught up in this book that I didn’t have time to write a single thought or quote.
After failing to love the second book of the series as much as I felt I should have, this one was an improvement. However, I remain with the fact that the story worked too much with delays in the main story and over dramatization of what I had considered a side-plot.
I give that the progress of the Selection couldn’t be overly dramatized, as the girls were not allowed to fight, so, naturally, everything else had to compensate. Mostly, this happened in America’s character and her struggle between the two boys – which ended ridiculously. By ridiculous, I mean easy. Convenient. Obvious. But also certain details of the rebel attacks were over-described, giving the novel a whole new tone, and setting it so far apart from the actual Selection process that it could have been a different story altogether. The book finally ended far too soon – or the last bits of action happened far too late – so that half of the questions that I considered important remained unanswered. (Her Dad?!)
Unfortunately, I felt that the author got scared of her big storyline, especially the part of the rebels, that she couldn’t do the build-up justice. Or maybe she just wanted it to be more than a book about girls fighting over one boy. I found this approach, for whatever reason the rebels were added, very promising, but as it got more and more bumpy, and kind of crashed (horribly) towards the end, I was disappointed. This might only be in my personal opinion. I was expecting something different from what I got. There is also the possibility that a side-story such as this one would have needed a different narrator than America, who lived in the palace and had her personal future to worry about. The basic idea was undeniably amazing though.
Compared to the previous book, America showed much more promise, but she still regularly destroyed my good faith by doing something she didn’t think through. Or because she can’t get her mouth open. (I’m a communicator.) She is surprisingly spoiled for someone who was raised so humbly – which, I fear, she was only in the first book, but not so much in the second, nor in the third anymore. In the end, however, I would have loved for America to make up her mind and stick to it. More importantly, I would have loved that, every single time she thought she had decided, for her to start acting accordingly – like accepting the fact that she had certain responsibilities and ways to act as princess/queen, or that she would just leave the contest and be herself or Aspen’s and figure out how to be that person. Maybe she just changed her mind so quickly that she couldn’t even get started with that.
I have, obviously, known about this series a long time before I started reading it. Therefore, I feel like I’ve built up this story so much in my head that there was just no way I could ever be happy with what I’d get in the end. But I have to admit that I read the end twice, just because I could. That wasn’t so bad.
Idea: 3 Stars
Characters: 3 Stars
Realization: 3 Stars
Writing Style: 4 Stars
General Rating: 3 Stars
Personal Rating: 4 Stars