Book Review: Crossed

Title: Crossed (Matched #2)

Author: Ally Condie

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Blurb: Rules Are Different Outside The Society

Chasing down an uncertain future, Cassia makes her way to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky–taken by the Society to his sure death–only to find that he has escaped into the majestic, but treacherous, canyons. On this wild frontier are glimmers of a different life and the enthralling promise of a rebellion. But even as Cassia sacrifices every thing to reunite with Ky, ingenious surprises from Xander may change the game once again.
Narrated from both Cassia’s and Ky’s point of view, this hotly anticipated sequel to Matched will take them both to the edge of Society, where nothing is as expected and crosses and double crosses make their path more twisted than ever.

My Review: So let me start this review with a confession. I have like thirty books just sitting around that need to be read and reviewed. With that being said I’ve had this book collecting dust for over a month and I have been so reluctant to read it. I can’t properly explain why especially because I enjoyed Matched. So although I did grudgingly pick this book up I was blown away. I started this book and was bewitched.

Crossed picks up a few months after where Matched ended. Cassia has been working in farming camps in the hopes of being stationed in the Outer Providences and therefore be closer to Ky. Crossed is told from both Ky’s and Cassia’s POVs and in the first half of the book it is great in letting the reader know how close their paths are to crossing. (I did find their switching narratives to be confusing at times and often had to go back and reread a few pages or most of a chapter.) Because I don’t consider it a spoiler I’ll spill: they do eventually find each other. The way their meeting was building up I expected it to be the climax of this book and also the ending. Well it’s not. Their reunion was exciting and beautiful and totally awesome. I loved it. But there is so much that happens in this book: action, romance, lies, deceit and plot twist after plot twist.

In trying to be honest I’ll say that Condie’s bewitching only lasted until the halfway point in the book. After Cassia and Ky find each other the book completely changes. A lot still happens but the characters change and that definitely changed the tone of the book.

  • Cassia, for example, is a really tough/ strong character. I love that. Especially in this book. She is every bit of the tough heroine as I’ve ever seen them. However, after she finds Ky I don’t see the strength anymore. I’m not sure if this was done purposely by the author or what but she went from thinking and acting like a grown woman to resembling an adolescent.
  • Ky has always been a strong character. But in this book Ky narrating really lets the reader get to know him. His history, his character, his personality and also his flaws. His biggest flaw, I find, are his insecurities. Which by the way, was a major turnoff. Also, in verbatim he says that telling people you’re whole story gives them ammunition to hurt you. He therefore never let’s anyone know everything about him not even Cassia. Well this results in A LOT of secret keeping which really upset me. That tends to be a pet peeve of mine and this resulted in a lot of frustrated brakes from this book. It’s one of the things that made me dislike the book and in a way, him too. I never knew him to be insecure or insincere but then again he wasn’t narrating in Matched. Maybe he was really good at hiding it.

Overall, Crossed is not a bad book. My biggest disappointment was the change of pace and tone in the second half of the book. I think if the book was consistent and ended the way it started it without a doubt would have gotten a 5 star rating from me. This book is without a doubt captivating and interesting and it presents a lot of questions that I’m hoping will be answered in the final installment of this trilogy, Reached. And yes, I do plan on reading it. However, in a bit of a spoiler I’ll say that this book does not seem to lead to the happily ever after one would hope to see. Yet I’m still interested to read how Condie finishes this series off.

Book Review: Matched

Title: Matched (Matched #1)

Author: Ally Condie

Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Synopsis: 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.

My Review: I started this book thinking it was about a love triangle. It even starts off feeling that way. With most of the love triangle books I have read, I tend to have a favorite; To want one relationship to work out more than the other. In Matched, as I read I was interested and intrigued but as far as the love triangle goes I felt as if I was riding a wave. I was going with the flow waiting for the pin to drop. For the defining moment that’ll give me a favorite. Contrary to my beliefs the central point of this book is not about a love triangle. Most books that share this theme tend to revolve around who she would choose. However, this “love triangle” is pretty one sided and I realized that this book is about something else entirely.

This book is truly about rebellion. For Cassia it revolves around the Dylan Thomas poem Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night. Matched is a novel about Cassia learning what it really means to “not go gentle.” It is about the moment where she decides to do things she wants because she chooses to and not because she is told to them. It is a nice story and I enjoyed seeing Cassia’s character grow. Because that is for certain, Cassia is a very dynamic character.

The book was interesting and I was definitely hooked. However, I really think it could of been better. There are so many dystopians that are similar in themes and scenarios and Matched seems to have a bit of a unique edge. What you unique edge, you ask? The biggest difference I found is how aware Cassia is of the effects of her actions. She is in no way ignorant and it was a nice change to have such a conscious character. Selfish but conscious. I just found that it wasn’t unique enough. It wasn’t different enough to not remind me of all the similarities it shares with today’s dystopians.

Still, it wasn’t a bad book and I am looking forward to getting my hands on the sequel.