Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection by Kiera CassRelease Date: April 24, 2012
Age Group: Young Adult
Received From: Publisher
IBSN: 9780062059932

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 the palace and compete for the heart of the 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.


The Selection and I….we have a odd relationship. It’s a roller coaster of feelings. It started out with that cover. It was love at first sight. The description didn’t sound too shabby either. I quickly added it to my Must Read ASAP list. Then I started hearing that the book was only so so and my excitement dwindled a little. When I first opened the pages I was a bit wary and I’ll admit that the first 100 pages were difficult for me to get through, but after that I was utterly addicted. I couldn’t put the book down and I flew through the rest of it in no time at all.

At first I didn’t think I was going to like America. She didn’t jump off the page at me. We kind of had to feel each other out. I did end liking her. She probably could have been a tiny bit more developed, but I enjoyed her honesty. She told people the truth and her real motivations for the most part and I found that refreshing. She was also just plain nice. I really, really liked Maxon….Aspen who?

There were a few things that felt forced, especially in the beginning. I didn’t care much for America and Aspen’s relationship. Maybe because we see much more of Maxon, but I did like him a lot more. Another thing that I didn’t like were the names. Not America – although America Singer isn’t the most serious and realistic of names – I’m not even bothered by Maxon or Aspen. Those are fine names. But when I’m fully emerged in a story and I come across a name like King Clarkson or Tullulah Belle (this was the worst because it’s the name of someone fairly well known) it sucks me right out of the story. It’s hard for me to take things like that seriously. It’s a little silly. That’s a very small complaint. Names aren’t going to keep me from liking it.

Another thing was some of the elements of the story were a little tiny bit The Hunger Games-ish. Hunger and food played a big role, the lottery for the Selection, a huge TV personality that does interviews. I didn’t like that stuff at all.  Some reviewers haven’t cared much for the world, I’m okay with it. It’s basic and it works. The focus is much more on the Selection than the dystopian world. The Selection is so interesting that I didn’t mind.

So, there’s my few complaints. Now let me just say that The Selection has this very, very addicting quality. It’s hard to put down. Just like a reality TV show is hard to turn off. I’m not sure what made it so addicting but it was. For the most part I really enjoyed the book. I’m anxious for book 2 already. This is a good debut and hopefully the series will only get better and better.


  1. I’m glad you ended up liking it.  I’m going to hopefully read it soon since I think I may be able to go to the release party :)
    Reading Angel recently posted..Review: Pure by Jennifer ArmentroutMy Profile

  2. I do think this book has one of the best covers of the year – and I don’t even usually go for girls in fancy dresses! It’s sort of hypnotic and awesome. Thanks for sharing your review!
    Cecelia recently posted..freshman year & other unnatural disasters author guest post (+ giveaway!)My Profile

  3. The cover is beautiful and the first thing that draws you, then the synopsis sounds so good, but I too have been seeing not so great reviews.  I feel let down and I haven’t even read the book.  Thanks for reminding me that I might actually love this even if others didn’t.

  4. I feel like the only reason I want to read this book is because of the cover. Which I think is a little bad… but I’m not 100% sure I get behind the concept. It sounds… I don’t know. Maybe not up my alley? However, I do think that it’s somewhat original and an interesting combination of dystopia and reality TV. I still want to read it, but am a little disappointed that most of the reviews I’ve read have been less than stellar. At least it has a pretty cover! :)
    Candice recently posted..Retro Reads Thursday – Lord of the FliesMy Profile

  5. It was slow for me to start too — I really couldn’t care less about Aspen! But once she code to the show and fought with Maxon, I was hooked! By the end I was in love with it!

  6. Wow, this sounds like a very interesting book. I will definitely look into it. Sometimes when I read reviews that a book is only so-so, I like to check it out and see for myself. 

    Thanks for the great review!
    Deborah A. recently posted..Review: The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, by Catherynne M. ValenteMy Profile

  7. So I’m still on the fence about whether or not I want to read this one. I had been really anxious to read it before but I’ve been seeing a lot of mixed and negative reviews so I’m not really sure anymore, since the time I have to read for fun anymore is so limited and cherished. The cover is and will always be amazing though! lol. I’m glad to have gotten a chance to read your thoughts in depth on it and to see you did still enjoy it. Thanks for the review!
    Briana (The Book Pixie) recently posted..Waiting on Wednesday: Tiger Lily!My Profile

  8. I am very glad to be reading a few mixed reviews for THE SELECTION lately, because ever since I first saw this I have been dying to get my hands on a copy of it. Knowing it might not be as awesome as I’m hoping, helps me adjust my expectations a bit, so I won’t end up being disappointed in case I won’t like it. So thanks a lot for sharing your honest opinion with us! :)
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  9. I’m not entirely if/when I’m going to read this book. I’ve come across quite a few *mixed feelings* towards it. However I was curious if you knew that this book is being piloted for a new show on The CW? So far they’ve cast a variety of actors such as William Moseley (Chronicles of Narnia), Aimee Teegarden (Friday Night Lights), & Ethan Peck (10 things I hate about you), etc. those actors alone have me wanting to check it out! :) 

    • I’m looking forward to the show! I’m a huge FNL fan so I’m happy to see Aimee on something else. I actually think it will work really well as a show.

  10. It does sound a bit hunger gamish like, but I loooove that cover so I’ll definitely give it a try and if you ended up liking it and are anxious for the next one than I’m sure I will too. Great review! =)
    cynthia recently posted..Hallowed by Cynthia HandMy Profile

  11. So glad you loved it in the end!!! I imagine you going through all those emotions while reading it – but it’s awesome you stick with it and didn’t give up! 
    I am so very intrigued by this one and is next on my TBR list! 
    DannyBookworm recently posted..The Chronicles of Nick by Sherrilyn Kenyon – Infamous Review and Infinity Giveaway!!!My Profile

  12. I am so intrigued by this book! A combination of good reviews and bad reviews only means to me that it is stirring up all kinds of emotions. The fact that it’s good enough to base a possible TV show off of it is good enough for me. That and Ethan Peck and William Moseley!

  13. Hmm…interesting take on the book! I’ve got to say I’m a little weirded out by the names, too. But I don’t even like “America Singer.” lol I think I’m just a little over the dystopian trend in general. But something interesting I’ve noticed about this story is how similar it is to the Biblical story of Esther. I mean, Cass might not have thought about it at all – but seriously, the stories are SO similar. haha
    KM recently posted..Review: Bourne, by Lisa T. Bergren *Five Star Rating*My Profile

  14. Thanks for your honest review! I’m on the fence about reading this one…
    Holly (Lily’s Bookshelf) recently posted..Top Ten Tuesday…but on Thursday! Spring Reads!My Profile

  15. Personally, I am absolutely dying to get my hands on a copy of this book. I’m literally counting down the days!

    I agree that the cover is gorgeous, and that’s always a plus. But it’s the premise that has me totally intrigued. This really sounds like my kind of story and I think there are a lot of possibilities and situations that could be explored here. There doesn’t seem like there are going to be any ‘easy’ answers.

    The only thing I will say is that the more I hear about the names, the more I cringe. Just a little. *laughs* America Singer makes me think of American Idol, and then we have King Clarkson, too? (My brain is already switching up King and Kelly; that’s gonna be *awkward*.) As for the guys names, I really like them — I think they are cool and original.

    What I do know is that this will likely be a day one buy for me. I’d be a bit more cautious and download a sample from Amazon first, but *that’s* where *my* pretty cover weakness shall rear its head.

    I enjoyed reading your thoughts about The Selection. Will I think it is brilliant in its execution, or will it hang itself? We shall have to wait and see. 
    Kathleen Ann Coleman recently posted..Review: BZRK by Michael GrantMy Profile

  16. I was like you in that it was the cover that drew me in and had me adding this to my tbr list.  I didn’t pay attention to any of the gossip about it so I went in without any real expectations set.  I agree about the relationship with Aspen.  It seem mostly like a relationship where they liked to make out to me.  I love, love, loved Maxon though!  America’s name was the one that bothered me the most.  At least America was kind of explained but then to have the last name Singer seemed like over kill just because she sings.

  17. Wow! Those are some names. I’m definitely nervous about reading this due to the mixed buzz but I really love the cover and concept so I’m just going to have to give it a try for myself!
    Bookworm1858 recently posted..SpellcasterMy Profile

  18. Ha. I had to come look! Yeah, I was hooked too, against my better judgement but still hooked. Great review :)
    Sab (YA Bliss) recently posted..The Selection – Kiera CassMy Profile


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