Wild Librarian Bookspot

Welcome, book-lover types and interested others! After years of running a bookclub, it's clear that folks need to spread the word about good books ... and bad ones. I'll be uploading as many titles as I can. Read on.

Friday, June 15, 2012

"Matched" by Ally Condie

For fans of "Hunger Games" this series provides a less gruesome alternative (at least, initially...).  Unlike Katniss, Cassia lives in a district that is clean and orderly and perfect.  Like most stories of this kind, too perfect.  Mix in a dash of Gattaca and 1984 and you have yet another tale of a world were everything works because uniformity is enforced.  Cassia is not your typical rebel.  She doesn't question the dictates of this totalitarian regime until small inconsistencies begin to crop up.  The book isn't about fighting back, but about becoming a fighter.  The characters are diverse, well-drawn and engaging.  Subtle rebellions are portrayed nicely, making even the reader question what really is occurring at times.  An avid Sci-Fi reader, I saw a number of plot devices coming, but not all.  Use of images, colors and lyric phrasing helps set the differences in the pallet of the drones versus those who would see their world for what it truly is.  There are reminders of the human past that evoke a sense of both nostalgia and irony.  The romance aspect here is much more of a driving plot-line than it is in "Hunger Games" and the "elevated tone," particularly at the end of this first book, gets to be a bit much, but it was good enough overall for me to seek out the second and third titles.  So far, it is dystopian fiction which is far less dark than some of the other tomes I've read of late.  In itself, that makes it worth it.  Add in decent writing and a page-turning factor and it is easy to see the popularity of this series.

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