Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Review - Matched by Ally Condie (Matched #1)

Picture from Chapter.ca
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Dystopia
: Trade Paperback (369 pages)
Publisher: Penguin Young Reader Group
Publication Date: September 20, 2011
Source: Bought
Rating: 3.5/5
Get it at: Chapters | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Summary from Goodreads:

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 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

Side Notes:

Matched was one of the first Dystopian story I willingly read. Don't get me wrong, I love to read but I was forced to read many dystopian and utopian back in High School. So I guess with all the forcing in English class, I tend to associate this genre back to all the unpleasant English classes... That is why I avoid this genre until now because a lot of people recommended good novels and they are all dystopian themed. 

What I think: 

Matched was definitely an interesting story, however, I thought that the plot was a bit unoriginal as it very similar to A Brave New World by Aldous Huxley and The Giver by Lois Lowry. However, it was a good fast read. 

The story follows Cassia Reyes, a normal teenage girl about to enter a ceremony that determines her future, to find her lifetime partner - her matched. The society in which she lives in is highly controlled by government - hobbies, poetry, fasion school, marriage as well as death days. Despite all the unpleasant things Cassia still looked forward to her Matching ceremony, in which is the only time she get to wear a extravagant dress. To her surprise, she got matched with Xander, her best friend and neighbor. However, the next day, Cassia learned that she has another matched, a mysterious boy named Ky. Cassia begins to doubt the perfect and flawless society in which she lives in. Why would a perfect society make mistake?

The beginning was certainly intriguing, however, as I read on, I can help to think about the whole love triangle because it seems really similar to Twilight - a confuse female protagonist and two male side characters.  I felt really bad for Xander, helping Cassia achieving her goal yet Cassia does not give him anything in return. 

Character development wise was a bit disappointing as author didn't specifically went into details about the protagonists as much as I hope. There was a LOT of  of guesswork going on, in particular with Xander's case.  But after all the twists, Ally Condie finally explained everything towards the end.

The plot was okay, I mean, with all the young adult dystopian story, the protagonist has try to change the government's cruel ruling right? Anyways, the plot has some potential, although it was not original, the twists and turns made up for it.

I look forward reading Crossed.

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