I know I don’t do reviews often but when I win a contest I feel compelled. Lydia Kang held a contest for a [insert fancy, flourishing script here] signed copy of REACHED by Ally Condie. The very first day I got it, I sat down in my room with it wondering if I should read it now or wait until I finished my current book. I figured I’d try the first page and then it was two days later and I was done. So, yeah. It was pretty good.
The Review (Note: no major spoilers are here...if you didn't know there was a love triangle, you haven’t read any YA fiction in the last ten years)
Mostly good. I liked that Cassia was not either an action girl or simply waiting for her boyfriend to come back. She had her own goals and motivations and while sometimes it was being with Ky, most of the time it was not. Xander was even stronger. He loved Cassia but that was rarely his primary motivation for doing anything. Ky on the other hand…he makes it clear in his narration that he does things because he thinks it’s what Cassia wants. His only real motivation seemed to be her, as well as being the unlucky member of the group, something he and the other characters all recognize.
Ally Condie is a good writer, but I felt the three POVs weren’t all that distinct from each other, kind of an issue in a novel like this. Cassia’s was a bit more lyrical than the boys, but without the heading on each chapter reminding me who was the speaker, I might not have noticed the change. Also, there was quite a bit of telling going on throughout the book (most prevalent in the early chapters). It wasn’t quite as jarring as, say, MOCKINGJAY’s, but it did pull me out of the story once or twice.
Absolutely first rate. I started on one page and felt pained when I had to put it down until I finally closed the back cover. The Rising happens quickly, most of it between parts of the book, but it isn’t the most interesting part. The characters are. I’m not a huge fan of love-triangles, but this one really caught me. It goes to show that you don’t need a character juggling between her two boyfriends to have a captivating story. She can pick one quite clearly and it doesn’t end the tension, the what-will-happen, the sorrow of being apart from the one you love. Probably the only negative thing I have to say about the story is that the climax is somewhat weak. It wasn’t a bit disappointing, though, so don’t worry about it.
Yeah, I’d buy it. Even if you haven’t read the first two novels in the series, you’ll enjoy it.