May 26, 2013

Review: The Elite by Kiera Cass

The Elite (The Selection, #2)

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 Illea.

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.
Hardcover, 323 pages
Published April 23rd 2013 by Harper Teen

Long Story Short:

If you crave a lighter read, fluent writing and not too much detail, you should check out this trilogy. Also, if you liked The Selection, give The Elite  a try. Some of the characters actually do develop in this book and the plot didn't fail to surprise me once or twice. Especially in the summer time, you might not feel like devouring a heavy dystopian novel, but might also be fed up with the usual contemporary romance, "beach reads". The Selection and The Elite are unique and entertaining enough to spend one whole entire day by the pool with.

2/3 Smarties

Review for You:

There seems to be something about this trilogy that gives it the absolute love it/hate it quality. I mean, I was torn. After finishing The Selection last year I wasn't immensely impressed by how the book turned out, but man, it wasn't as bad as some people claimed, either!
It had a very unique premise, a nice setting, and - gotta admit it - Maxon, who made everything better, always! And OK, neither The Selection nor The Elite could actually convince with the characters or plot. America, just like Marlee and Aspen, May and pretty much all of the side characters seriously lacked depth or surprising elements. They continued to be the a little bit flat beings that they were. One exeption was Maxon. His story -as revealed toward the end - really caught me off guard and let me see him in a very different way.
The plot did pick up  in The Elite. It's still not the fastest paced dystopian novel I've ever read (by no means, actually), but there were some twists and turns that kept things interesting.
Sometimes it seemed a bit forced, I'll give the critics that. Cass certainly made it quite easy for herself sometimes, simply giving Maxon the power to change everything whenever he wanted to.
However, a good book does not always have to have unique characters or plot or a detailed background or whatever the usual reviewing aspects are. Sometimes, it's enough to just enjoy the story that unfolds in front of you.
I'm going to be honest, I didn't want to spend a lot of time on The Elite. It wasn't on my TBR list originally and I just got it on Netgalley, pretty unexpectedly, and decided to squeeze it in. Also, at the time I was ten books behind on my Goodreads challenge and really hadn't any time to waste.
And in that situation, The Elite was great. Exactly what I needed. Quick and light, but not contemporary. No endless highschool drama and blabla (which, if you know me, I love when the time is right), but a completely different world to sink into. Literally like a reality show, it confronted me with entertaining problems and fights that I didn't have to find a solution to. It had a nice little love story (and yes, a love triangle) that I didn't have to wrap my brain around, either (weird imagery, by the way...)
To cut it short, The Elite - like The Selection - did have its flaws, it's by no means for everyone. If you crave something on the lighter side, something unique. And if you like authors who do not spend three hours describing a tree that has nothing to do with the actual story (am I getting a littly cynical here?), but who simply tell their story, fluently and to the point, then you should try this trilogy.
Especially compared to other books, I really don't understand why these novels seem to get so much hate. 


  1. Thanks for the review! I have yet to read The Selection. Can't wait to do so and see if I'll like it.


    1. Oh, let me know if you read it! Somehow these novels get so many contradicting reviews - it makes me excited about everyone who decides to read them :)

  2. I thought that The Selection was a really fun read, so I'm looking forward to the next installment.

    Kate @ Ex Libris

    1. Mhm...if you liked The Selection I'm pretty sure, you'll like this one, too. It's plain entertainment - even if it lacks depth :)


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