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Book Review: Matched by Ally Condie

I must have missed the crazy hype for Matched because it took me by surprise!

Book Review: Matched by Ally Condie

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matched by ally condie

Title & Author: Matched by Ally Condie

Genre: YA- Science Fiction

Release Date: November 20, 2010

Series: 1nd in a planned series

Publisher: Speak

How I Got the Book: Bought

Description:

“Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate… until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.”

Science Fiction + Suspense ÷ Love Triangle = Matched

I’m surprised I’m saying this, but I’m happy to see so many science fiction-y books out in the YA market right now. Between Under the Never Sky, Matched, Across the Universe (I still need to read this!) and a ton of others, there’s a healthy representation of this sometimes-feared genre.

Matched had all the right science fiction elements, too. Too-controlling government? Check. Super-smart technology complete with weird outfits? Check. Futuristic society that’s starting to lose some of its humanity like poems, songs and art? Double check.

Plus, there’s some seriously suspenseful moments that had me reminiscing about Mara Dyer. Ally Condie knows how to leave a reader dying for more.

When I realized there was going to be a love triangle (by page 10), I did inwardly groan a little. Love triangles are rampant in YA (now and forever, probably), but I have to say that Matched was fairly clean of instalove. There was some strong attraction going on, but no one declared their love after a few days – heck, a few hours.

I don’t normally ask these types of questions, but…Team Ky or Team Xander??? I’m so on the fence, it’s ridiculous. Though, to be fair, I haven’t read Crossed yet, so I’m not sure if anything’s tipped either way, but I’m hoping Condie hasn’t made the choice for us yet!

Hyped Up

I had the great fortune of reading this book recently, i.e. a hypeless time period. I decided not to read Matched for a long time because I’d read a ton of reviews stating that this novel was over-hyped and that the reviewer was disappointed. Without the mass hype – almost the oppositie – I was very satisfied with Matched. Granted, I haven’t read Delirium or other similar-type books, but I was very happy with the writing, characterization and setting in the novel.

Condie writes clearly, with great insight and telling observations. I felt for Cassia right away and patiently waited for her to find her voice and strength. Plus, the world is exciting, scary, utilitarian to a fault and realistically described.

OVERALL:

I thought Matched was refreshing and different and I’m dying to read more. Condie introduced me to a brave new world (pun intended) that I can’t wait to read more about. Cassia, good luck choosing between Ky and Xander. I don’t envy you that choice…but I will anxiously wait to see the thrilling results. If you’re late to reading Matched like me, don’t let the negative reviews scare you – it’s a great science fiction novel for teens!

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • http://twitter.com/jakile Jan

    i read matched after reading Divergent. i was not really happy with this one coz not much was happening, not a page turner for me, no suspense, not really action packed. i was hoping for Xander to fight for it but he didnt.

  • http://readinginthecorner.blogspot.com Jessi

    I read this one early on this year before I was really paying attention to reviews and such and I enjoyed it, too. I am totally on the fence about the boys. :)

    I will say that I’ve had trouble really getting into Crossed. I need to sit down and just really go for it I suppose…

  • http://readinginthecorner.blogspot.com Jessi

    I read this one early on this year before I was really paying attention to reviews and such and I enjoyed it, too. I am totally on the fence about the boys. :)

    I will say that I’ve had trouble really getting into Crossed. I need to sit down and just really go for it I suppose…

  • Sabrina

    Great review. I like that you waited some time to read the book until the hype (and anti-hype) was over. IMO that often works best.

  • Sabrina

    Great review. I like that you waited some time to read the book until the hype (and anti-hype) was over. IMO that often works best.

  • http://ems-reviews-books.blogspot.com/ Ems

    I loved Matched. I also read it after the hype had died down somewhat, so I think that helped. Crossed is awesome too! (I’m on the fence as well with the guys…you’ll learn things in Crossed that make it even worse!)

    (Also, when you get a chance, definitely pick up Delirium…it’s awesome! Also, Across the Universe = book love.)

  • Pam Wright

    I loooooved this book and have already read the next! Loved them! Reviews are not always correct as I have found out. Even movie reviews are never right. I love to make my own decisions about the books I choose. This was an unusual view of how the future could be. Think about the way we are directed by the people governing us today. It could be a possibility! Thanks for your view points. I thoroughly enjoy your blog!!!!

  • Melissa Hayden

    Glad to see you enjoyed it. And I know what they mean about the over hype. It happens. But sounds like a good one. :)