Series: The Selection #2
Published by: HarperTeen on April 23, 2013
Genre: Dystopian, Romance
Source: ARC From Publisher
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The selection began with 35 girls. Now, with the group narrowed down to the Elite, the competition to win Prince Maxon's love is fiercer than ever. The closer America gets to the crown, the more she struggles to figure out where her heart truly lies. Each moment she spends with Maxon is like a fairy tale, filled with breathless, glittering romance. But whenever she sees her first love, Aspen, standing guard, she's swept up in longing for the life they'd planned to share.
America is desperate for more time. But while she's torn between her two futures, the rest of the Elite know exactly what they want—and America's chance to choose is about to slip away.
I feel like an author. With writer’s block. I’m sitting here, staring at a blank page, and I have no idea how to form my words. The Elite was everything I hoped it would be: it was intense, romantic, emotional, but it was also conflicting. There were a few things I was very unsure about and my emotions were pulled all over the place. But even so, I loved this book!
The Selection itself is an odd thing, because it’s so weird, and so… disgusting. It is so completely un-romantic. In The Elite, Maxon dates six girls, he whispers sweet things into their ears, and he kisses a handful of them… all at once (not literally, like some giant orgy, but you know what I mean). There were some very specific moments in The Elite where this really threw me for a loop. One example: Maxon is leaving for a while and all the girls are lined up to bid him farewell. He literally goes down the line of girls, kissing them on the cheek/hand/whatever and whispering sweet goodbyes to each one personally. It was literally like Maxon was a man with six wives, and that was pretty gross. If I were America, I would feel like my boyfriend was cheating on me five times, right in front of me.
As someone who doesn’t take cheating or jealousy well, that whole idea sits ill with me. But despite all my reservations and aggravation towards this fact, I cannot help but adore this series. It’s like a drug. Something about the competition draws me in. Who will win?? But that being said, there were times that I just wanted to bash Maxon’s face in. He claims that America is the one for him, but then why does he have to continue being sweet with the other girls?? I almost felt like it was happening to me, because the anger and jealousy were so strong. I was SHOCKED when he started making out with Celeste. CELESTE! BITCH FACE CELESTE! And his explanation was basically, “You were unavailable, the other girls were holding out, and I was horny.” Fuck you, Maxon.
I started out this book as a 100% Maxon fan. I hated Aspen’s guts for his reason for breaking up with America. It’s so annoying and so selfish (despite the attempt to actually be selfless). But The Elite rocked my emotions in so many different ways, that now I’m not even sure whose side I’m on. If it weren’t for the whole “multiple girls” thing, I would still be Team Maxon. But seeing him with other girls has made me doubt. Even though I have sworn to hate Aspen for all eternity, at least he’s a one-girl man. Maxon is sweet and all, but it was so hard for me to stay completely devoted to him. I feel myself wavering!
I personally still love America, but I can understand how she’s not for everyone. America cries a lot in The Elite and she’s not always portrayed as the strongest character. It didn’t bother me much, but I know some people really don’t like girls who cry a lot. I think I can sympathize with her though. I see the amount of stress she’s under, and I just want to hug her. I can totally understand the love triangle because, in this book, I felt it too. I’m so confused about which guy I love more, so I completely get why America was confused and stressed and unsure, and thus breaking down into tears and hysterics. I got it!
One of the things I loved most about The Elite was how we learn a lot more about how the country was founded. The world building isn’t a huge part of the story, but it was a nice side plot to all the girl drama. The tid-bits we do learn are pretty morbidly interesting (does that even make sense? Probably not, until you read the book). But the facts we learn start to play a big role in forming America’s political opinions and ideals. I imagine, and I hope, that they will also play a huge role in the third book!
I am so insanely grateful for this book. It was EXACTLY what I needed, because I was getting ready to commit reading suicide due to reading so many “meh” books. But with The Elite, I was ripping through the pages and giggling like an insane person. There were times when I even spoke to the book. Yes, you heard correctly. MY NAME IS ASHLEY AND I SPOKE TO THE BOOK! You know when a narrator/MC sometimes asks rhetorical questions? I answered them. Out loud. Example:
America (to herself): “Can I win this competition?”
Me: “YES, GIRL!! YOU TOTALLY CAN!£!@”@”e£”j”””$3242141”
I may need to be committed.
Also, I was just like America. I was crying over everything. Happy, sad, you name it. There were tears involved.
Sweet letter from father? Tears—check.
Maxon making sweet promises? Tears—check.
Heartfelt moment between America and her maids? Tears—check.
Another letter from her father? Tears—check.
Sad moment with one of The Elite girls? Tears—check.
Yes, I had reservations with this book. I love Maxon to bits, but there were still times when I hated him. The whole idea of The Selection is kind of “what the hell”, but this is one of those books that I just love with every fiber of my being. I adore it. I love it. It’s my drug. This book, along with The Selection invokes my strongest emotions. It makes me cry, it makes me laugh, it makes me want to read more, more, more, MORE! I gobble up every word, every kiss, every hysterical meltdown. I am confident that fans of The Selection will enjoy this book just as much as I did! It will not disappoint, and I must say, I’m super curious to hear about everyone’s thoughts about Maxon! Have they changed?
I don’t even want to know what the release date is for book 3, because I’m sure it will be depressingly far away.