(My mom loves this cover. It is pretty cool.)
I just finished reading Matched by Ally Condie this morning.
Matched is about 17 year-old Cassia and the dystopian society she lives in. This book has been compared to both The Giver, and to The Hunger Games. There are similarities to both which is what makes me think that if you liked those books, you will like this book. However, there are differences.
The Society that Cassia lives in is horrific, but not in the way that Panem is horrific. What I find so horrific about the Society is that no one realizes how awful it really is. They aren't pitting children against each other, instead they have taken away every choice, everything beautiful. The Society says that it is in the citizens own interests, but really it is a way to keep control over them. Imagine not being able to choose who you marry--it's chosen for you in a scientific manner in which the two most genetically compatible people are put together. You can't marry who you love. You can't choose your profession. Everything in your life is predicted for you. There is no running outside, no one is allowed in your home, they can make you forget if they want.
Imagine a world where you can't create anything. There are only 100 poems, 100 pieces of art, 100 lessons in history. Everything else has been destroyed. You don't draw, you don't write, you don't play music. Everything is made so that it is the most useful. You don't even get to choose what you eat--your meals are made for the exact calorie count you need and you don't get anything that tastes good except on the most special of occasions.
Cassia is content with this life--would you be? What would you do if you met someone who showed you that things could be different?
This is the first book in a series, but I thought that the emphasis on freedom of choice was a wonderful. It is there is other books like this, but I felt that it was stronger here. I am interested to see how Cassia's story finishes out. I highly recommend this book.