Title: The One [The Selection 3]
Author: Kiera Cass
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Romance
Rating: 4 Stars
The Selection changed the lives of thirty-five girls forever. And now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen.
America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants.
WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW
I adore this series, but out of the three books, this is probably my least favorite. As far as the technical side of things go, just like the other books in the series, it was well written. There weren’t any noticeable formatting, grammar, spelling, or punctuation issues. I never felt jarred out of the story. The narrative was clean, clear, and easy-to-follow. The cover is gorgeous.
Unfortunately, the book felt a bit rushed and a bit too tidy. After the emotional roller-coaster of the second book, I wasn’t sure what to expect from The One. I don’t know if it was because I was so drained by the previous book, or if it was just written this way… but moments that should have been tragic and heart breaking, weren’t. There were deaths right and left, rebel attacks, gun-battles in the street, but I didn’t feel the emotion of the characters the same way I did with the previous book. The drama between the characters, while still present, had been dialed down quite a bit.
Some characters, such as Aspen and Celeste, I learned to appreciate (and believe me, that’s hard to do with those two). Others, like Elise, I learned to loathe. There were several instances where I genuinely feared for America’s future. I think out of the three books, this was the book that made me question America and Maxon’s relationship the most. They were on seriously rocky ground, and there came a point where I wasn’t sure if I was on Team Maxon anymore. He was a bit childish, more than a bit angry at America, and after all the drama of the second book… I questioned whether he was right for her. America had no such doubts. It was nice to see her finally own up to the truth—that she dearly loved Maxon—even if she came to the realization really late in the game.
My biggest problem with this story was probably the little tidbits where the narrative seemed rushed. The whole matter with the King near the end (I’m trying so hard not to be spoilery right now—you have no idea) was over and done with like it was nothing. What should, and could have been a major bit of drama was over like a gunshot. Poof. No more problem—and it bugged me. On top of that, the matter of Maxon and America declaring their feelings seemed like it happened too soon. I know that sounds weird considering it’s the third book and they still haven’t even said “I love you”, but there was a moment where they went from “I’m not going to say it first!” to “omgiloveyousomuch” in a matter of minutes. The emotional switch in my brain overloaded… I just couldn’t understand what was happening.
That isn’t to say that there weren’t some really great moments. I giggled at the tea party and the northern rebel meeting. I outright cheered with how America handled the Convicting. These were fantastic moments and America was brilliant in them. She really came into her own in this book and began to not only believe, but show the other characters that despite all the mistakes she’d made, she was princess material. It was nice to see her becoming strong in a situation that she’s had so little control over in the series.
I will say: I wasn’t a huge fan of the ending. I know, I know… it’s pretty standard for romances these days to end with a tie-up chapter where everyone is obnoxiously happy and we get a peak at what the future holds for the world. I get it, but it’s cliché.
Overall, I liked the book. It wasn’t as emotional as the second book, and it was a bit too rushed, but I’m still glad I read it. This was a great series and I’d certainly recommend it to anyone who enjoys YA Romance.