The Selection Novellas Reviews

So I recently just read all of The Selection novellas by Kiera Cass, and rather than do separate reviews for them, I’m just going to combine them into one review here. There’s a few spoilery kind of things in the reviews, just so you’re aware.

theprinceTitle: The Prince
Series: The Selection 0.5

Before thirty-five girls were chosen to compete in the Selection…
Before Aspen broke America’s heart…
There was another girl in Prince Maxon’s life…
Don’t miss this thrilling 64-page original novella set in the world of the New York Times bestselling novel The Selection. Also features a teaser to The Elite, Kiera Cass’s hotly anticipated sequel to The Selection.

In this novella, we got to see part of The Selection from the viewpoint of Prince Maxon, and I was actually excited to read from his perspective because I liked his character when I read the first book. In this we saw him dealing with his emotions before the Selection process and I think that he stuck true to his character: he was shy, but confident, and tried to make the right decisions.

And then there was this girl from France who just kind of made a situation in the novella seem kind of abusive and I was like, “Um, yeah no.” Trying to make Maxon think he was in love with her and he just didn’t know it? Yeah, no thanks. She was nice up until that point and then BAM.

Then we saw him during his first encounter with America and a few more after, and I really enjoyed those scenes, being able to get his thoughts on what had just happened and all of that.

There wasn’t much to go on here, but it was nice nonetheless to see from Maxon’s point of view. If you’re a fan of the series, give this a read!

3.5/5 stars

theguardTitle: The Guard
Series: The Selection 2.5

Before America Singer met Prince Maxon . . .
Before she entered the Selection . . .
She was in love with a boy named Aspen Leger.

Don’t miss this digital original novella set in the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection trilogy. This brand new 64-page story begins just after the group of Selected girls is narrowed down to the Elite and is told from Aspen’s point of view. The Guard also features a teaser to The One, the thrilling conclusion to The Selection trilogy.

So when I originally started this I thought I was going to read a bit more from Aspen’s point of view before he became a guard, and maybe his journey into it, or something like that. But this novella was about his time in the palace when America is going through her Selection and the various times they meet in The Elite.

Frankly, I’m not a huge fan of Aspen, so I had to push through this one. I found him kind of annoying like I did in the series, but it was still good to get a perspective from him.

He was confident in his role as a guard, but a lot of his thoughts were only about America. When he had a talk with Lucy, I was hoping for something else to happen, but he just went right back to thinking of America, which is fine since he was still infatuated with her.

Overall, I thought him to be a little too dependent on America. He tried so hard to show he still cared, but I didn’t really get that from him. I got a desperate boy trying to win back the heart of the girl he made brokenhearted.

The plot of the novella did follow some different sequences, though, and we did get to see him in action a little bit, which was cool. I wanted to know more about the rebels and see more fights, but alas, it didn’t happen.

3/5 stars

PrintTitle: The Queen
Series: The Selection 0.4

Before America Singer’s story began, another girl came to the palace to compete for the hand of a different prince….

Don’t miss this digital original novella set in the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series. This prequel story takes place before the events of The Selection and is told from the point of view of Prince Maxon’s mother, Amberly. Discover a whole new Selection with this inside look at how Maxon’s parents met—and how an ordinary girl named Amberly became a beloved queen.

This was actually my favorite Selection novella and I wish there had been more!

This novella followed Queen Amberly when she was in the Selection back in the day. I found her to be reserved and polite, knowing a little bit more strife than some of the other girls that were there. I think that it was kind of adorable that she had been in love with (then) Prince Clarkson ever since she was a little girl from having seen him on TV and whatnot and the fact that that little girl crush continued on into her Selection process.

It was nice to see Clarkson take an interest in her and show some concern in his own way for her because of her medical condition. From there, their subtle romance took off and I actually thought that it was really kind of cute and enticing.

The plot itself showed a glimpse as to why Clarkson became the king he was due to his parents, and it showed how Amberly handled that situation. The two seemed kind of made for each other, which was sweet.

Definitely give this novella a go if you’re a fan of the series.

4/5 stars

thefavoriteTitle: The Favorite
Series: The Selection 2.6

While America Singer’s heart was torn between Aspen and Prince Maxon, her friend Marlee knew exactly what she wanted—and paid the price.

Revisit the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series in this digital original novella. Told from Marlee’s point of view, this all-new 64-page story returns to the fateful Halloween when Marlee and Carter were discovered, and reveals how that night—and Prince Maxon—changed their lives forever.

This novella took place during the events in The One and I actually really enjoyed this novella, too. It follows Marlee during the time she’s going to be beaten for treason, and it also goes into flashbacks about her and Carter first meeting and the times in between to their first kiss and beyond.

I was super suspicious of Marlee at the beginning of the series, but as it progressed I saw that she was really just a genuine friend, and after her little rendezvous with Carter, it kind of really showed that her heart was elsewhere.

This novella was divided into two parts, and I was honestly hoping the second part had more to do with a little bit into the future of their lives, but it was during one of the attacks from the rebels. As with the other novellas, I just wished for more because I wanted to see how they’d act and react in certain situations.

I really liked the characters explored in this novella, and though I wish the plot in the second half had been a little different, it was still good nonetheless, though there were some parts where I questioned why something was funny or why something had to happen the way it did.

Either way, check this novella out if you enjoyed the series.

3.5/5 stars

*All novellas were read in ebook format on my nook Simple Touch.

The Selection Book Review

theselection

Title: The Selection
Author: Kiera Cass
Series: Book #1 in the Selection series
Publisher: HarperTeen – an imprint of HarperCollins
Publication Date: January 12, 2012
Genres: Young Adult – Dystopian, Romance
Pages: 327
Format: Purchased Paperback

“The Selection” by Kiera Cass is a story about a girl named America who lives in a post-modern world society where The Selection takes place to determine who will be the next princess of the kingdom of Illea. She doesn’t want to be part of the Selection, though, where eligible young women between the ages of sixteen and twenty-one, I believe, are able to put their name in in hopes of being one of the 35 chosen to compete for the prince’s heart.

The Selection really sounds like The Bachelor, if you think about it. All of these girls going on dates and vying for the heart of who they hope will be their future husband. Some are in it for the money or the crown, and of course some are in it for the prince, Maxon.

I actually really enjoyed this book a lot more than I thought I would. It was a fun, light-hearted read and I didn’t have many problems with it, but let me tell you a couple of problems I did have:

  • America could be whiny sometimes. And by this I mean that she seemed to either over think or be too critical in a given situation, but then again I know she’s supposed to be a teenager and teens tend to do that (I was one). Everyone gets like this from time to time, though, so I get it.
  • The love triangle between three of the main characters just seemed out of place toward the end of the book. I didn’t understand why Aspen had to be at the palace, but I guess it was sort of hinted at much earlier in the book.
  • Following that, I think the news America shared with Aspen at the end, and his cool response to it, just seemed out of place or not really true to his character. Though I guess we didn’t really get to know him much, so maybe that’s why it felt out of place.

I loved the whole system of the Selection and how it works, really. I could vividly imagine the goings-on of the days that they spent in training or in front of the camera, and I enjoyed how America developed within the Selection. She wasn’t this lovestruck, I-can’t-live-without-you girl as the story progressed; she actually had a mind of her own. I also liked that she was caring toward her maids and obviously not typical for that kind of lifestyle.

Maxon, himself, I got attached to, as well. He has the reflection of a typical stuck-up rich kid when America sees him on the TV and everything, but as she gets to know him (and injure him) he really opens up and shows his true character. I liked that about him, a lot. I kind of saw it coming, really, because it always seems like a recurring theme in YA, but I don’t mind it. It’s actually nice to see the true colors of a character fly when given the chance.

I want to know more about the king and queen and more about how their Selection took place. We got snippets and everything, but I just wasn’t satisfied. I hope that the next two books cover more of their backstory. (Oh hey, looking online there’s a novella, “The Queen,” that tells this story. Thank you, Internet.)

Also, the other girls in the Selection, like Marlee, Celeste, Bariel, Ashley, and the others, definitely have their own roles to play and it’s really interesting to see who is going where in terms of the Selection process. I have my own theories about Marlee, and when I read the next book I’ll let you know if I was right or not.

The world building was subtle, but at times it was definitely laid on hard because of the girls’ lessons from Silvia. I thought it gave a great chance to really expand upon how things happened and why Illea came to be. I liked it, though, so I can’t complain much.

The plot was predictable at times, I’ll give it that, but it wasn’t so predictable that I didn’t enjoy it. There were still a few things thrown in that made me smile, laugh, angry, etc.

I look forward to reading the sequels. This trilogy is actually now being turned into a five book series, so I can’t wait to read the rest.

I rated this book 4.5/5 stars.

Accompanying video: The Selection Trilogy Book Review