I didn’t want to be royalty. And I didn’t want to be a One. I didn’t even want to try.
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.
Why I Chose It: This came up on my Goodreads and I definitely thought it was worth checking out!
So I thought The Selection was actually quite good, and this is for a couple of key reasons. First of all, I expected the book to be quite predictable. You have a girl who does not want to be in a love competition, who then meets steamy Prince Maxon and is forced to interact with him over several weeks. There are only so many ways to do this story. Yet The Selection managed to surprise me in a few different ways. I had initially thought that it would the the traditional “I hate you as I slowly fall in love with you” type of story, but to my delight America and Maxon strike up an interesting friendship and deal right at the start, and I thoroughly enjoyed their interactions. On top of this, there were a couple of different plot twists, and – without giving them away – they definitely kept the book interesting.
Another really interesting aspect of the book is that it consistently drops hints and small details about both the history of the land and the “Rebels” who live outside of the kingdom, but who have some serious beef with the Crown. The history I found a little weird – it makes the Kingdom out to be some sort of future dystopian United States that has been rearranged into a caste system. I found it to be a strange combination of dystopian and real-world history, and I might have preferred the kingdom to be set in an entirely fictional world. However, it was not so off-putting to really bother me, and I did enjoy the caste system in place in the novel. The Rebels, on the other hand, I found immensely interesting, and I ate up all the details I could about them. You can definitely tell that there is a bigger story going on outside of the Castle, and that there is a much more than the Selection of the Queen waiting to emerge in future books.
Finally, The Selection was just fun to read. It was almost like a fun girly movie in book form, yet I loved all the foreshadowing of bigger plot lines to come. Even though parts of it were really predictable, I couldn’t put the book down! I tore through this book, and I absolutely enjoyed every little hint it had for the sequel. Not to mention my shock when it ended in a completely unexpected cliffhanger! The Elite, sequel to The Selection, is due out in April, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it!
Rating: 4 / 5