Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Matched (Matched #1) by Ally Condie: review

Goodreads rating: 3.78
Paperback, 366 pages
Published November 30th 2010 by Razorbill
Series: Matched #1
Source: bought; signed

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.

I actually wasn't sure what to expect with this book. All I knew was that it was dystopian. And you know how I love dystopians. But for some reason I kept putting it off. With all the excitement of the final book coming out soon, I figured I should start this series now. And I'm glad I did. But I didn't like it as much as  thought it would. I really enjoyed the first half of the book. Cassia was naive but still had a little spark in her. Her grandfather is about to die and she's very close with him, and he's a bit rebellious which was awesome Even though he was only there for a short time, he was one of my favorite characters. And I loved Xander. Maybe it's because his name reminds me of a certain character in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but I couldn't see how she wasn't in love with Xander. He's her best friend; what could be a more perfect Match than that? But I guess that's what the Society thought as well. When she goes to view his information card she's been given, she sees another face. Ky's face, who is the other guy in this love triangle and the one she falls in love with.

More than halfway through, it became about the romance between Cassia and Ky. First off, I don't understand why she wasn't feeling more guilty about falling in love with someone that wasn't her Match. I get that it wasn't her choice and so maybe she was rebelling a little too, but the guilt I would have felt for betraying not just my Match, but my best friend, would have eaten me up from the inside. I think Cassia fell for him because his life is complicated. Xander is pretty simple (although she finds out he knows more about a lot f things than he's letting on) and dramaless, but she chose the broken soul. I don't know if it's because she think she can save him or because she's also broken in some way. But Cassia starts spending more time with Ky, finding out who he is, and falling in love with him. We find out though that it wasn't exactly a glitch or fate that brought them together.

I think I enjoyed the love of Cassia's family, and the mystery and corruptness of the Society more than I did the romance. Cassia's parents love each other, and will do anything to protect everyone they love. The father breaks rules and the mother keeps them, so I can see where Cassia gets her rebellious streak. Cassia's little brother Bram was cute, but I wish there had been more on him. There was so much more of this story that could have been fleshed out, but instead we were forced to focus on the romance and the small things that became because of this romance. I loved the parts that had the poems in them, and the main poem is one of my favorites. But all of a sudden, everything was about Ky and I lost interest. I wanted it to be a better love triangle, but maybe that'll change in the second book. Overall, an enjoyable read with lyrical writing and a great setup for an interesting dystopian trilogy.

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