Author: Ally Condie
Summary from Goodreads:
Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate… until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.
The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow
*Spoiler Alert* I cannot review this book without “spoiling” it. The reason is that I really, really, really disliked this book. I wanted to like it a lot. I love Dystopian novels and this one had a really interesting premise, but I just could not bring myself to like it.
I am Team Xander all the way. Passionately so… So much that I kind of hate Ky. To me, loyalty is extremely important and it ticks me off that Cassia carried on with Ky behind Xander’s back after they had been matched… after she had initially choosen Xander. To me, that is inexcusable and unforgivable. Plus, I could never trust a guy who made moves on another’s betrothed.
Aside from that, Xander showed true love for Cassia. If Ky had really loved Cassia, he would have let her go and not dragged her into his dangerous affairs. If he really loved her, he would never have put her in danger. But he did… and to me, that says it all. Xander, on the other hand, would have done anything for Cassia. He really loved her. He loves her so much that he agrees to help her “love” even though it kills him. He loves her enough that he hides what he believes is her artifact, and still hides it even after he knows that it is not her artifact that she gave him. I am also fairly positive that she is the reason that he gave his pill to Em… because Em was Cassia’s best friend. He knows her enough to read her and know when things are wrong.
To me, this is a lot like The Hunger Games, except that in this time, the best friend has the personality of Peeta. And just like in the Hunger Games, I rooted for the one with the desirable personality of a life partner. I do not believe that it is good to be with someone who is too similar in personality. I think that all of the passion that Ky and Cassia have could be explosive, and not in a good way. Just like Cassia pointed out that it is because her father and mother compliment each other with their differences that their love is so true. Cassia and Ky are too similar in what matters. Cassia is a bit like her father, and Xander is like her mother… and she needs someone like her mother for when things settle down.
I now try to put aside my feelings about the romance and focus on the rest of the plot… but the problem is that the romance aspect was so interwoven into the plot that it is hard to seperate it. If Ally Condie had managed to keep those aspects seperate, then I would have perhaps been able to find that part interesting, but it was so impossible. This book was like a horrible remake of The Giver and The Hunger Games… It’s plotline was stolen and all ideas are unoriginal.
Have you read this book? What do you think? Am I over-reacting? Anyone agree with me?