I won't lie - I picked this book up solely because I thought the cover was pretty. Shallow of me? Maybe. But then I read the synopsis and it's (embarrasingly?) right up my alley. A nice guilty pleasure kind of read. It's sort of like that dose of reality tv you need to include into your television regimen to spice things up...but in book form.
Because, let's face it - a group of girls from various castes in the dystopian future are Selected to live in the palace while the Crown Prince goes on dates with them and eliminates them until he's selected his future bride? It's pretty much the Dystopian Bachelor. The only thing missing is the rose ceremony...
Plot-wise this book was probably just "meh" if I were to over-analyze it...BUT, as I said above, I can mainline reality tv with the best of them - so it makes sense that I can do the same with a book version of a reality tv show. I like a good dose of fluff every now and again. Or a lot. Maybe a lot.
Character-wise I have my only real complaint about the book...I wish Maxon was a stronger character. I thought America kind of ran him over in some places...and I didn't find his behavior endearing - but, rather, annoying. He was just too wishy-washy when it came to the girls that it was hard to take him seriously when he was being a decisive ruler.
It seems people either love or hate this book...and I definitely fall into the former category. I am looking forward to getting my hands on the second installment so I can root for my favorite in the inevitable love-triangle that is forming between Aspen, Maxon and America.