Friday, March 8, 2013
by Ally Condie
Date Read: 12/05/2012
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★
At the beginning and even half way through, I was planning to give this book 3 stars. But when everything started coming together in the end, it got much better. The story is what saved this book, and pushed it to the 4 stars. It's probably still getting rounded up to 4 stars, but still.
The characters weren't exactly enthralling. I liked Ky. He had a good story, and it was interesting to learn about his past which made him the way he is today. But it was hard for me to understand why Cassia was falling for him so fast, because we as readers didn't really get to know him until about half way through. But once I did finally get to know about Ky, I think he ended up being my favorite character.
Cassia was an okay main character. She just didn't seem like she was 17 for most of the book. But also as the book goes on, you realize that this society doesn't allow people to make choices. Everything is predetermined for them. Predicted. So perhaps because she's never had to make choices, she is a little more childlike. A lot of what makes us grow up and mature comes from making choices and knowing choices have consequences. So I actually ended up liking her more by the end of the book. When she decides she doesn't want to be stuck in the bubble the society put her in.
I never really grew attached to Xander. I thought he would kind of be like Gayle in The Hunger Games. And his character was kind of that character that you see at the beginning but you know she's not going to be with. But at least Gayle I got a little more attached to. I didn't really see Xander as attached to Cassia as I thought he would be. Again, this goes back to the society they are living in, in which they don't show a whole lot of affection or anything. But still. [SPOILER: I didn't even feel sad for him when Cassia told him that she loves someone else. I didn't really believe his reaction to it either. This might be because we didn't read a lot about Xander. But I also didn't see them as a couple, even when they were together. ]
The story is what really kept me involved in the story though. It took a while to figure out what the societal conflict was going to be. But when it finally happened, it got me hooked. There were some things I expected, and some things I didn't. It is an interesting story. It's almost like a Hitler story - the society trying to make a perfect world, but does so by a kind of choosing the best thing. I like how this story is looking at the perfect society. A society can never be perfect. If you look closely, you will see that things are happening that are not okay. I liked it.
I didn't really understand the sorting concept though. Cassia was supposed to be so good at it. But it was hard to figure out what the purpose was. I finally understood when Cassia was doing her final sorting test. But I was confused the entire time. I am still a little confused over the purpose of a lot of the sorting. Like the number sorting - maybe if I knew what the numbers were for, I'd have understood the sorting better. Just like I understood Cassia's final test better, because I knew what she was sorting.
I definitely want to read the next book. I think it will be more entertaining because it will focus more on the story than on the romance trying to set up why she is going against the Matching system.
[SPOILER: And I have to know what happens to Ky!! They took him away! And to FIGHT?! Ah. And it's because poor Cassia sorted him into that group because she thought she was helping him. I feel so bad. She has to find him and save him!! ]
Posted by Kristen at 8:09 AM