Release Date: April 23, 2013
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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 Iléa.
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.
The Elite is the follow-up to the alluring and wonderfully engaging The Selection. A unique concept with unexpected twists and endless beautiful dresses. The Elite has more romance, more rebel-action, and plenty more situations for the young girls to get through in order to win over the prince's heart.
Our main girl America has made it into the Elite stage of the Selection and it looks like she has Maxon's heart more that the others could possibly have. When she's with him, she couldn't be happier, but thinks are tough when she has her old boyfriend as a guard outside her room. And America has to decide whether her heart really is with Maxon because the group is smaller and the girls are doing everything to get Maxon's attention and time is running ouot. But with rebels attacking and a tragic secret unveiled, America is no longer certain about anything in the palace.
Reading The Selection over a year ago, it's hard to remember the little bits that happened and how I actually really, really loved it. But reading The Elite has just reminded me how much I adore the dystopian world the story is set in. Also, I forgot how much I enjoyed the characters! America is such a great proganist with a complicated yet intriguing personality. Maxon is lovely and, during the first half of the book, I thought he was perfect, but the second half is where all his secrets are spread on the table for America to see. As for Aspen, he was cute and America's rock while she is in the palace.
I must say, this is not one of the most exciting or action-packed books out there, and it's not a book that is everyone's cup of tea. But it certainly is mine! I loved the dresses, and all the girls' feistyness, and the romance... or should I say romanceS? I adore the love triangle in this book; It's complicated, and each boy has different qualities and very different lifestyles to offer America.
Now when I say lifestyle, I almost mean the Hunger Games lifestyle. How everyone is in Districts? Well, in this book people has numbered; from royalty, Ones, to Eights, those who work long hours for hardly any money. America is a Five, the Caste specializing in the arts and music. Her family is very poor and she is only in The Selection to get her family some money.
I know how so many people hate love triangles, and this one was so cheesy, but I love that type of stuff so I fell head over heals for the romance plot. I'm still caught between Maxon and Aspen. There were times when I was completely team Maxon but then he would do something or he wouldn't pay enough attention to America and that just really go on my nerves. Hopefully Kiera will give us a satisfying ending with a clear choice between the two boys.
Like I've mentioned in my review of The Selection, the story is not the most exciting, but it is addictive and you manage to get pulled into the world very easily once you start reading. I could not put the book down until I reached the end.
Despite all the negative reviews about how this trilogy is too similar to The Hunger Games, I still think that Kiera Cass manages to slip in a few surprises and her writing style is very engaging! I am anxiously waiting for the release of the last book since Prince Maxon hasn't actually chosen his princess yet! Bring on 2014.
A review copy was provided by HarperCollins Children's Books