I love this genre, dystopian literature. What seems perfect always isn’t and for Cassia, it’s turning seventeen and getting her match (the person the Society has approved her to marry) that sets off a series of events that will forever affect her, her family, and her world.
Something has gone wrong, while viewing her datacard with her match’s information, another face flashes on the screen. But this can’t be right, the Society doesn’t make mistakes. And in that moment, everything Cassia has believed and trusted shifts.
(I think we should pause now so that I can just say I’m a sucker for a love story. And I’m an even bigger sucker for a love story where people aren’t supposed to be together. I fall for it every time, but I just want everyone to be in love and happy, gosh darn it! And that sentiment tinges a lot of my reviews. I’m a sucker for love and need it to work out. And when it doesn’t, I don’t like the book. I’m really a baby about it. I just felt like that should be brought up because it makes my reviews slightly skewed, this “love” bias that I have.)
As Cassia looks at her world and those around her with new eyes, it becomes apparent that something is off with their world and changes are coming. And when they come, it takes everything that Cassia loves.
This book is the first in a series of three. I fought the urge to go out and buy the second book immediately after finishing this one (the third book doesn’t come out until November 13th–and yes, it’s marked on my calendar). I think I have shown great restraint which isn’t normal for me. But we’ll be at the mall tonight and I will be picking it up then. (Random tangent: I don’t have an e-reader of any kind and sometimes I think it would be so nice to have one so I could instantly get the next book I need and not have to wait. But many of the books I read are young adult books. I read them because I love them, but more importantly so I can talk about books with my students. Recommending books and raving (or hating) them with my kids is a powerful tool in the classroom. And if I was reading all these great books on something my kids don’t have access to, it would be pointless and cruel. So when/if I ever get an e-reader of any kind, I’m still going to be reading all young adult books in paperback so they can make their way into my classroom library and into the hands of kids. So if you were thinking you should suggest I get an e-reader so I don’t have to wait for the next book, I’m with you, but it’s not happening with YA books. I really just love holding a book in my hand. Call me old school, I’m okay with it.)
I loved this book. And I know I’ll be staying up late tonight reading the second one, Crossed. We do a unit in my classroom with dystopian novels (we all read The Giver together and then do literature circles with books like The Barcode Tattoo by Suzanne Weyn, Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and others like them). I think this book would be a perfect fit for that unit.