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Book Review: The Elite by Kiera Cass

I may be alone in feeling this way, but The Elite did not live up to The Selection for me. It didn’t have that magnetic I-literally-cannot-put-this-book-down pull to it, and America wavered between choosing Maxon or Aspen at least 5 times each.

Book Review: The Elite by Kiera Cass

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The Elite by Kiera Cass

Title & Author: The Elite (Selection) by Kiera Cass

Genre: YA – Historical Fiction, Dragons

Release Date: August 23, 2013

Series: The Selection #2

Publisher: HarperTeen

How I Got the Book: Final Copy via Publisher

Description:

“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.”

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not

For what it’s worth, America could have made a more definitive decision between Maxon and Aspen if she had actually plucked petals from a daisy and let the age-old decision making game decide for her.

Girl, what the heck?! Nevermind that the rebels are hitting harder than ever and girls are dropping like flies in the competition. America’s got her eyes on the well…they’re darting from prize to prize.

I really wanted to LOVE The Elite. I really enjoyed The Selection and didn’t even expect to. Maybe that reverse thinking (having high hopes for the second book) is what sabotaged my experience…? It’s just sad to see that I was literally gushing over the first book, and now I don’t even want to pick a “team.”

Was it just me? What did you think about The Elite?

The things I did like:

  • Strong friendships prevailing
  • Mean girl drama (it added some excitement)
  • Competition challenges shaking things up
  • Tension of what will happen to Ilea next

Ultimately, this series is definitely entertaining. I mean, it’s a mix of The Bachelor and The Princess Diaries. But, I just didn’t think The Elite lived up to the added hype and thought it wasn’t as great as The Selection.

I hate to bum people out, so here are a few second opinions:

  • Once Upon a Twilight: “Unlike the Selection, The Elite will bring out your emotions. You will cry, laugh and will have a strong desire to slap someone. LOL”
  • The Book Belles: “The Elite was a great sequel, although I felt it didn’t quite live up to The Selection.”
  • Chick Loves Lit: “I am very, very interested to see what happens in the next book. I have high hopes for Cass to pull it all together in a great way!”

OVERALL:

I was definitely disappointed with this second book in The Selection series. I was hoping for more action, adventure and warm fuzzies. Instead, the story was a bit flat with little genuine emotion. Those who wavered on liking The Selection may be pleasantly surprised, though. Although The Elite isn’t my fave, I think this series has real potential, and I know I’ll be sticking it out till the end.

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.
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  • Karen

    I finally read this and I totally agree with you…this book was not good..at all. I didn’t like the the constant switching or the fact that NOTHING HAPPENED.

  • Josephine

    I actually really liked this book. It showed the humanity or flawed side of the characters. Maxon’s personality was given depth. Albeit, I hated it when he was with Celeste, but America was distant, moody, and altogether standoffish when he just did everything he could to make her happy. We saw the personality of the supporting girls, not like in the Selection when they were somewhat in the background. Celeste became worse as a person, Elise is unwaveringly focused on the competition, Natalie is a airhead, and Kriss is winning Maxon’s heart.
    Kierra just gave us bits of the rebels. Now we know what they’re after, but what is their purpose? Did anyone else just cheer for them when they made it into the castle? Maybe that was just me. I, I don’t know, wanted them to just wreak havoc. I cannot wait to discover their cause and purpose in the last book.
    Yes, the constant switching was annoying, but who can blame America? She is in a very confusing situation right now. This book made me angry, sad, and so very eager for the next book.
    Overall: I liked this book more than the Selection because it moved away from the fairytale fantasy of idealism and became a realistic, exciting story with very human characters.

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