The Selection Trilogy – Book 2 & 3
Synopsis for The Elite:
The Selection gets fierce as rivals stake their claim on the Prince.
Six girls, one life-changing prize… America Singer will leave her pre-destined life for a world of glamour and luxury, if she wins… But surviving The Selection is tough. Rivals are battling to become Prince Maxon’s bride as the threat of rebel violence just beyond the palace walls escalates into war. Only six girls are left and sworn friendships are tested to breaking point. America’s feelings for Maxon grow stronger, but she suspects darker mysteries in his royal past. With ex-lover Aspen waiting for her in the shadows, where do her loyalties truly lie?
I decided to persevere with this trilogy as I was already halfway through The Elite at the time of writing The Selection’s review. I’m also one of those people who cannot walk away disliking something unless I have the whole story in which to ground my opinion in – It’s why I suffered through all of the 50 Shades of Grey books.
I feel that it was necessary to make this post covering the remaining two books as doing them individually would be a slog for readers. Who wants two somewhat negative reviews in a row? I sure don’t.
I honestly feel that Kiera Cass dropped the ball entirely in the execution of her ideas for this trilogy. I say this because I feel that nothing of significance occurs throughout The Elite. There are a couple of moments where you inwardly cheer for America through her staging of a ball in which she garners important political allies of her own and not for the aid of the kingdom. Other than this event you don’t experience much more than a lot of crying in her room and an underwhelming love-triangle.
America behaves awfully to both Aspen and Maxon; I have no idea how either of them continues to put up with her theatrical renditions and wishy-washy idea of love. Ultimately she hurts the Prince, Maxon, more and more throughout the book and yet he continues to pursue the girl. As I outlined in my previous review, I can make allowances for the fact that the characters are all teenagers but with Maxon’s upbringing surely he could tell when someone is a walking red-flag and unworthy of remaining in The Selection itself. He had far better prospects to chose from even being down to the final six girls.
In this instalment, we learn a little more about the history of the caste system and how it came to be through revelations in the diary of Illea’s founder. It isn’t enough to garner a full understanding but feeds into the age-old stance of the richest paying their way to the top.
Synopsis for The One:
Entering the Selection changed America Singer’s life in ways she never could have imagined. Since she arrived at the palace, America has struggled with her feelings for her first love, Aspen–and her growing attraction to Prince Maxon. Now she’s made her choice . . . and she’s prepared to fight for the future she wants.
Moving into The One we find only a few remaining girls and still very little competition between each other. With it being a Bachelor style televised process there’s only one incidence of The Report being broadcast to the citizens of Illea and boy is it a big one. America presents an idea that earns the wrath of the King himself and emboldens the rebels and citizens alike. She regains popularity among the masses and inspires them to want more than their station. Within the previous book, Kiera Cass had almost lost sight of what this whole story was built upon – overcoming adversity in society.
The One finally introduces true strife to America’s existence. She encounters difficulties that cause her actual harm and also a loss that should have been portrayed as a lot more emotionally destroying than Kiera delivered to us. Thankfully this final book became the page-turner that the other two books lacked. It was nicely paced, tugged a little at the heartstrings, and ultimately tied things up quite well in the end.
Maybe I have been more critical than I should have been with this series but, honestly, I still feel like this could have been a really good 600-700 page single edition instead of three books totalling just over 1,000 filled with very little substance.
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