Title: The Elite
Author: Kiera Cass
Series: The Selection
Previous Book in the Series:
1. The Selection
Date Originally Started: June 25, 2013
Date Originally Finished: June 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover from my local library
America Singer is part of The Selection; thirty-five girls have been selected to try and win Prince Maxon’s affection and to become The One. There are only six girls left and the stakes have never been higher especially for her. Her heart is in tumult. On one hand she has Maxon, who loves her and who she might be falling for. On the other, there’s Aspen the guy she was in love with until he broke her heart, but he’s a guard in the palace and is desperately trying to win her back. What’s a girl to do? Well, pretend nothing is wrong and keep playing the game, of course. Maxon helps her out and decides to throw a Halloween party, where he’ll also invite the families of the final six. It’s at this party that America realizes that she has completely fallen for Maxon and she tells him. Things have never looked better, except if you’re a reader and you notice that this happens barely a third of the way through the book. There’s just too many pages – plus a series that seems to correspond with the different rounds of the game – for things to end happily.
And boy, do they not end happily. The next morning, all the girls and their families are requested out into the courtyard of the palace, only one of them is missing. It happens to be Marlee who is brought out with one of the members of the guard in chains. They were caught in a compromising position, a crime punishable by death, but Maxon has decided that the punishment is too extreme and instead they are to be caned. America isn’t happy about this and tries to stop it, but is escorted from the room. She is so mad at Maxon that she wants to go home, but he won’t let her, he asks that she does the same thing that he has done for her and give him time. She agrees reluctantly but she doesn’t want to talk to him right now. In fact, she doesn’t talk to him for a few days, and that’s really where things change. Now, because of this rift the other girls have moved in, and Maxon’s affection for America is called into some serious doubt.
So, when I originally read this book in 2013, it wasn’t my favorite. In fact, it was a major let down from the first book. Re-reading it two years later, and it still isn’t my favorite and it’s still for the same reasons. America likes to self-sabotage and it really costs her in this book. Her temper tantrums after the Marlee incident made me want to slap the crap out of her. Like, I understand that she’s pissed off at Maxon for his role in her friend’s beating, but c’mon girl. If you want to be a princess you’re going to have to have a better poker face than that. And man, her jealousy issues! I can’t believe that she was so surprised that the other girls would take move in on Maxon considering their separation. But I was just as surprised as she was when she came across him and Celeste in the hallway. You know, for a guy who claims to love America, he sure didn’t act like it in that second.
Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Still a good captivating read if you can get past America’s rash decisions. The one thing that was interesting about the final few chapters of this book was the fact that the true villain was revealed. King Clarkson is a prick and I’m curious to see how America manages the rest of the competition with him gunning for her. What about Apsen? I mean, they parted on okay terms, but that was because he thought she was leaving, but now that she’s not, what’s going to happen now? And with America’s idea to get rid of the caste system thanks to those diaries I’m curious what’s going to happen with that.
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