Sunday, April 26, 2015

The Selection by Kiera Cass Review #85

Author:Kiera Cass
Publisher: Harper Teen
Pages: 327
Source: Chapters
Links: Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Chapters/ Book Depository
Rating: 4/5
"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." Image and Bio from Goodreads
Prince Maxon is the number one reason why this book is so enjoyable and addictive. Readers will fall in love with Maxon's character as he is noble, kind and similar to a puppy dog in that he is cute, adorable and sometimes naive. The readership will also immediately be drawn to Maxon as he is charming and romantic.

I attempted to read The Selection two years ago and failed. After the first two chapters I gave up on reading it. However, after watching the new television show, The Royals, I was immediately drawn back to Cass's books.

When I finished The Selection, I had to think long and hard on what rating I was going to give it. In the end, I chose four out of five stars. When making my final decision, I had to decide if The Selection was a book I would later think about (a year or two from now) and would possibly re-read parts of it again. The answer to that was yes and that was why I gave this book 4 stars instead of 3.

This novel is addicting as it a) completely romantic and b) a lot of readers want to be in America's shoes with two guys vying after her.

Maxon is the reason I stuck around and kept on reading. Once he was introduced in the book the reading experience was much more pleasant and did not drag at all.

I don't really have much thoughts, at the moment, of America Singer. There was nothing about her character, yet, that screamed: I LOVE HER or I HATE HER. Towards the end of the novel she felt like she was cheating on Maxon but, all I could think about was....well he is technically dating how many other girls? There should be America's selection (Maxon and Aspen) and Maxon's Selection.

America was also really insecure with the other girls and I definitely could relate to that. At times she was afraid of how the other girls viewed her and at others she was a take charge kind of girl (ex; her maids).

By the way, America's maids (Anne, Mary and Lucy) were the best (second best to Maxon)

 However, that being said, there was a lot of stuff that bothered me while reading this novel.

A) Description : I felt that a lot of stuff was under-described. These things range from characters to rebel groups to Illéa itself.

-I felt the 35 girls within The Selection were not fleshed out as well as they could have been. I could barely remember their faces let alone their names and personalities. I felt no emotional connection with the girls and there was nothing that stood out about them (except Celeste's meanness).

-This is a dystopian novel however, it did not feel like one. I felt like the first novel in this series should have devoted itself to world building and really giving the readers a feel for the horrors of some of the castes (starvation etc;) and the dystopian rules instead of focusing on America's relationship with Aspen and Maxon.

Sidenote: Does anyone else not like Aspen? At the beginning of the novel Aspen's presence really dragged the storyline for me (not so much towards the end of the book).

How did the two of them keep their relationship a secret for so long?... When Aspen's mom even suspected her son was dating  someone.

 I would have really like to know more about : the Illéa logo, guards uniform etc; I also thought their should have been a deeper explanation of how Illéa formed.

-The violence the rebels caused seemed always in the background and when the big one came I did not feel scared or worried for the characters.

B) Action : I felt like their could of been a lot more of this especially with the rebels and whatnot. I really wanted to see the characters in danger--and actually facing the rebels, instead of hiding from them.

In all it was a good read and Warner Bros. just acquired the rights so hopefully will soon see it on the big screen.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (2): April 25th, 2015

(Image from Tynga's Reviews)
"Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!"-Hosted & Quoted By: Tynga's Review
"Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea. America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide. Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending." Image & Quote from Kiera Cass's Website
Thoughts: The Selection was very addicting and I am looking forward to reading The Elite. I am in love with all the covers of this series :) So gorgeous.
"When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control. Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones. When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents. When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living." Quote & Image from Goodreads
Thoughts: I saw the "Book Plot Judging" video by polandbananas on youtube. The Darkest Minds is briefly talked about and I immediately liked the sound of it. This past week, while visiting my local book store, I picked it up and read the first few chapters (without looking at the synopsis). THIS BOOK IS SO AMAZING & ADDICTING!!! Why did it take me this long to find it!?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

#1 FF: Feature & Follow

How did you come up with your blog title and address? Does it have a special meaning for you? – Suggested by The Paperback Princess

I don't think I have ever talked about this before. Back in 2009 I was trying to come up with a name to call my book blog. Obviously, I love paranormal-romance type novels so I thought something that would relate to that would be best. Immediately, I thought of the Harry Potter series. However, maybe I should clarify, I thought of all the movie adaptations of Harry Potter since I have yet to read the books. 

I cannot recall if I had been re-watching the films at that point or if I just could not forget this little guy.  However, my mind quickly thought of: 

I love devouring books....I'm a monster of books...I eat books up *not literally*. So thanks to Harry Potter's The Monster Book of Monsters and my love for paranormal I mashed them together to create my blog name.  That was the inspiration & creation behind my book blog name. 

This is a blog hop hosted by Parajunkee & Alison Can Read

Thirsty Thursday and Hungry Hearts & That what HE said

(Image comes from Goodreads)
"I bit into the strawberry tart. It was so sweet and the dough was so flaky, every millimeter of my mouth was engaged, taking over the rest of my senses entirely. I didn't mean to make the little moan, but it was by far the best thing I had ever tasted. I took another bite before I ever swallowed the first."
Pg. 135 , The Selection by Kiera Cass

Thirsty Thursday and Hungry Hearts is a meme hosted by (un) Conventional Bookviews   ! On Thursdays we post a quote, containing to food, from a recent read.

That what HE said
"'Speaking of which!' he said a bit louder.'If you don't want me to be in love with you, you're going to have to stop looking so lovely. First thing tomorrow I'm having your maids sew some potato sacks together for you.'
I hit his arm. 'Shut up, Maxon.'
'I'm not kidding. You're too beautiful for your own good. Once you leave, we'll have to send some of the guards with you. You'll never survive on your own, poor thing.' He said all this with mock pity."
Pg. 251, The Selection by Kiera Cass

The what HE said is a meme hosted by Chapter Break.   

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