I picked up the book because I liked the premise. A girl caught in the throes of society whose rules she didn’t want to follow. It was dystopian, it had a female lead–seemed like it would be good.
Unfortunately, I was disappointed.
Cassia lives in a world where every major to minor decision is made for them by the society. What to eat, who to marry, when to die… Cassia was happy with the way things are. That is, until she found herself falling in love with a boy who was not her society-approved match. Suddenly, the glaring inadequacies in this way of life come to light and she will do everything she can to break free.
Sounds good, right?
The book reels you in at the beginning. The description of her match banquet, the little snippets of information that we assume will be explained later, the easy prose–you’ll be happy with your choice of reading. But, halfway through is when the going gets tough, when you are searching for reasons to keep awake, but, the book gives you none.
Lead characters- card board cut-outs of good girl going on to rebel and emo boy with a past. And poetry. Of course, add the best friend who can’t help but love the girl. Apparently, we can’t have love stories without a triangle now!
The world–Dear God, the world! What makes dystopia great is that peep into a different world–the setting, their rules, and reasons! However, Ally Condie refuses to give me the pleasure of diving into her world.
Why did the world come to be that way?
Who is this Society and who rules it?
Why can’t they write when they can read and use computers?
What is an anomaly and warming and sorting?
I have finished the book and I still have no idea. The world seemed to evolve as per the convenience of the plot. This was the final nail in the coffin for me. You do not write dystopia and then deprive me of a new world!
The prose- Ally Condie has a flowy writing style, natural and easy. However, that writing needs accentuation with a fast plot and a mean edge when writing dystopian fiction. Even if it is a dystopian love story. This series I’ll let go, but I will look forward to her writing a new book that will not make my eyes glaze over half-way through.
BOTTOMLINE: Matched is not dystopian fiction; it’s a love story. So, do not pick up this book because you love the dystopian genre. Do not pick it up if you like explosive action or any action at all. Pick it up only if you are an enthusiastic reader of teenage love stories (triangles, quadrilaterals and that entire thingumabob). Who knows, you might even like the characters.
Book review contributed by Overrated Sensibilities. This blogger is on a mission to read some of most timeless books of our generation, be it ones written years ago or just recently. Also included are groups of short stories and poetry.
10 thoughts on “Matched – Book Review”
Thanks once again for another honest and in depth review that gives reasons both to read – and not to read. In this case, the review decided me. I would be frustrated by all the loose ends and things that were written in simply to stitch it up for the convenience of the author and not for the entertainment of the reader.
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I really wanted to read Matched but after reading this review I think I will skip it.
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I’ve had this on my ‘to read’ list for a while, but after reading this really honest and well written review, I think it might be time to remove ‘Matched’ from my list! It’s always disappointing when the world isn’t well developed, or explained at all…
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I read Matched years ago and completely agree with your review. There are so many dystopians that do world building so well, but Matched is absolutely not one of them. It’s truly abysmal and it made me really sad.
This is very interesting. Matched has been on my ‘to be read’ list for a while and I was looking forward to it. Maybe I’ll hold off. I hate being disappointed.
Great review! I agree. I remember being really excited for this book when it first came out, but it was a disappointment for me as well.
This has been on my ‘to-read’ list for a while now, but there was always something that held me back. I love your really honest review, as the premise does sound great but if the execution hasn’t worked then I think I might pass.
That’s too bad you didn’t like it.
And Ally Condie does have a new dystopian kind of book (standalone, mind you!) called Atlantia. I will be really curious what you think of it, whenever you read it :)
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