I’m always excited when there is even a spark of romance in a book I’m reading, so it’s no wonder why I am such a fan of Kiera Cass’ Selection series-romance! I recently finished the second book, The Elite and I’m craving book three!
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.
I really enjoy reality type shows like “The Bachelor” (although I rarely watch it) or “House Hunters” where the characters have to choose between multiple options by the end of the show. There is something deeply interesting about observing someone else make a decision. I’m always intrigued by what factors they consider as the options are weighed and, in the end seeing what they considered to be the most important. I think this is where the main interest is for me with this series; I want to know what choice will ultimately win for each character. Also, there is some big time romance!
The Elite picks ups exactly where The Selection (see my review) left off. America Singer is one of six contestants left in the competition to win Maxon’s affection and become Princess of Illea. America is struggling to make a choice- is her heart in the competition (with Maxon) or does it still belong to her first love (Aspen)? As someone who has a difficult time making even insignificant decisions I totally understand where America is coming from. She is enjoying herself more than she thought she would in the palace, but sometimes wonders if she is really the right girl for the job. I get this and I do love America, however I found myself very frustrated with America’s waffling throughout the story. She wants Maxon’s attention is surprised by her jealousy over the other girls, but continually sneaks off with Aspen when no one is looking. She’s hot and she’s cold. It really does just make a reader want to throw something at her! But, when I really sit down and think of it, America is smack dab in the middle of a highly stressful situation and who wouldn’t get decision paralysis if your choices had so much riding on them?!
So, America is a little annoying, but I really got into the way Cass added a little more depth to the story with all of the politics, rebellions, and dark family secrets. The story is obviously still focused on the competition of the Selection, but now there are other factors to consider which clearly add more stress to the situation. This made it much more than a YA version of “The Bachelor”. Plus we get to know a little bit more about Maxon’s backstory and his relationship with his parents, which I want to know more about. But don’t be alarmed by the addition of darker things, there is still a lot of romance going on, thanks to that love triangle America can’t seem to wriggle herself out of!
If you’re like me and you enjoy romance and a good reality-show-like vibe, then you need to get your hands on this series. The Elite is just plain romantic fun and I seriously don’t know how I’m going to wait until May to read the final book!
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: Harper Teen (April 23, 2013)
Length: 323 pages
Series: Second in The Selection trilogy
Buy the Book: The Elite (Selection)