The Selection

The Selection - The Selection by Kiera Cass is a dystopian book I fell in love with!Backstory:This world is set various years in the future and we are told the U.S. was in serious debt to the Chinese. The Chinese got tired of waiting for their money, so they attacked the U.S. and took over. While in a transition state, the Russians saw an opportunity and attacked as well.A private U.S. citizen, Gregory Illéa, who had a lot wealth and power, fought back the Chinese and Russians, setting the U.S. free. People were tired of their old ways and set out to make a new country, calling it Illea after their hero.A system of Castes began, and there are a total of Eight Castes with Ones being the richest and most privileged, and the Eights being a little above slaves. At the head of the country are a King and his Queen.To offset the chances that anyone can be on top, if there ever is an unmarried prince of age, every eligible girl from any Caste can enter a contest called The Selection. In The Selection, the prince chooses thirty-five girls from all the entrants and moves them to his castle. From there, there are several contests and trials the girls must pass before they are chosen the queen.(Life isn’t so bad for the losers. As a consolation prize, the cast-off girls marry prominent men who can brag their wives made it to The Selection.)The new system isn’t without it’s problems, though. The rich always want to get richer and suppress everyone else *le sigh* So there are a lot of rebels who constantly attack the palace and try to kill the King and Queen.Story:We meet America – she’s seventeen and her family are artists. She’s a Five. She lives a good life, though sometimes food and supplies are scarce when they can’t find work. Still, she’s pretty much a happy soul and more importantly she’s in love with Aspen, who’s nineteen and a Six (Servant class).For two years, they’ve met in secret at America’s tree house. One night, he tells her to enter The Selection as he could never forgive himself if she didn’t take a chance to better her and her family’s life. America goes along with it, amidst pressure from her family who sees it as way to improve their lives. But for America, becoming Prince Maxon’s wife is the furthest thing from her mind. He doesn’t mean anything to her. He’s just a face she sees on TV. America never thinks she’s ever going be chosen and keeps on living her life.Just when things seem at their brightest and it looks like Aspen is going to ask America to marry him, Aspen tells America that he can no longer be with her. Devastated, America doesn’t have time to process the breakup because she’s told she’s one of the thirty-five girls selected to enter The Selection.On the day she’s set to leave for the castle, she sees Aspen with another girl! *faints* Determined to put Aspen behind, she goes wholehearted into the contest. It helps that her family gets paid for every week she remains there, so she tries to make the best of it.On her first night there, all she wants to do is be outside and explore the palace gardens, but the guards tell her she needs to go back to her room. Things are about to escalate until guess who comes along to her rescue? You guessed it, Prince Maxon! *faints*Even though America’s seen him countless times on TV, nothing prepares her for seeing him in person. He’s nineteen and so handsome, but don’t get too excited, she’s still pining for Aspen and mending her broken heart.Still, America is honest with Maxon from the get-go and they become fast friends. She tells him she’s just there for the food and he makes a deal with her to keep her around as long as he can so her family can keep getting money. LOLAs time goes by, America forgets all about Aspen and starts falling for Maxon as not only is she doing right by her family, but she sees a chance to change the entire country should she actually win the contest. As you can guess by now, Maxon has fallen for America and is only waiting for her to come around and love him, too. *awww* He’s all sorts of caring and thoughtful to America and her family I can’t stand it *flails*But just when America is all set to give her heart to Maxon, the unthinkable happens – Aspen shows up at the palace. He’s been drafted into the military and is part of the palace guards! *faints* His status has now changed to that of a Two and he’s dead set on getting America back now that he can provide for her.But now that America’s in The Selection, she is considered property of the prince. If she’s caught with another man, she could be sentenced to death. But that’s not the worst of her problems. The rest of the girls in the contest will stop at nothing to win Maxon’s heart and the kingdom. Can America rise to the top?My Thoughts:The Selection is all sorts of inventive, and I loved how the author who seems like she is awesome (check out her blog), went to such lengths to create such an amazing world. I love all the flaws that come with this “utopia” the government is pushing on the people. Love how everyone is just on the brink of a riot, the rebels keep attacking the palace, and yet in the backdrop we have this little bachelor contest going on, distracting the people from the true problems in society.Plus, you know how much I love a love triangle. I can’t get enough of Prince Maxon and Aspen! *le pants* Who is America going to choose?I can’t wait to see what happens in book two, The Elite!The Selection Features: Young Adult making out kissing no sexual content mystery intrigue suspense romance