Apr 8, 2013

Review: The Elite by Kiera Cass

Title: The Elite
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher:  HarperTeen
Publication Date: 4.23.2013
Pages: 336
Genre: Dystopian
Series: The Selection #2
Source: ARC from publisher

Rating: A-

Summary (from Goodreads):
Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

The Selection was one of my favorite debuts—favorite books—of 2012, so I was insanely excited to get an advanced copy of its sequel. In The Elite, Kiera Cass ups the ante with a looming war and royal politics while still blending together a story about a girl falling in love with a boy or two.

Yes, America still hasn’t chosen: Prince Maxon, the guy who utterly capture my heart this time around, or Aspen, the boy she loved and always believed she would be with. Ultimately it was America’s waffling that disappointed me. While I can understand the appeal of a triangle, the way America handled things made me want to slap her.


I can see having feelings for two guys would be hard, but America treats them both like a child who covets two toys. When Maxon did something that irritated her, rather than try and talk to him, she ran off to Aspen. Then a few days later she would realize Maxon was spending time with another girl (after America repeatedly turned him away) and would get jealous and run back to him. This constant push-pull infuriated me. Pick a boy, girl!

The Elite is Maxon’s book to shine. Any issues I may have had with America paled beside the awesomeness that is Maxon. I wasn’t totally sold on him at all in The Selection, but here I felt like he grew exponentially as a character and a boy becoming a man. His life isn’t black and white and he is often forced into unfortunate circumstances that he tries to make the best of.

Cass is an absolute gem of a writer. I absolutely adore her style and I would—and will—read everything she writes. She deftly navigates the fine line of layering more mystery with much needed revelations. I cannot wait to see what she has in store for the final book in this trilogy, but The Elite is a strong companion to its predecessor, at times outshining it.

Reviewer: Hannah


  1. I want to read this book! Thanks for the review.

  2. I can't wait to read this one!! I was guessing she still doesn't pick one. I am glad to hear that Elite sometimes outshines The Selection :)

    Ashley @ The Quiet Concert

  3. Yes! Yours is the first review I've seen of this and I am dying for my copy of it! I can't wait for it. So glad you liked it so much! I know I will! Love that we get to see Maxon shine!


  4. The Selection was my favorite book of last year and I can't wait till my preorder gets here. I am so happy to hear that Maxon shines in this one because I love him so much, I am definitely Team Maxon lol. Great review!

    Kristin @ Young Adult Book Haven

  5. You were far more forgiving of America's waffling than I was Hannah! I just couldn't deal with it in this book, but I agree with you completely on Maxon. I was leaning toward him in The Selection, but he completely won me over in this book to the point that when Aspen made an appearance I wanted to scream at him to go home, that America was Maxon's:) Despite my frustration with America, I will still definitely be reading the third book because I have to know what happens!


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