When I first read The Selection way back when, I remember thinking (and stating in my review) that it was the kind of book I could re-read many times. So, I happily did a re-read of the title when I receivedThe Elite for review. Which meant I headed into The Elite with everything fresh in my mind, reading the duo of books back-to-back in a handful of days, and it just made the reading experience so much more … oomphy.
Because I loved The Elite just as much as I did The Selection. I loved where it took off from. Loved the twists and turns. Loved the revelations. The battles. The slow drip-feed of information that the reader should be suspicious about and trying to analyse, but they don’t because they don’t realise they shouldhave been until we’re hit with those ‘WTH/OMG/Please, God, no’ moments.
As I said in my review of The Selection, I kinda predicted how it would all play out. That wasn’t the case for me with The Elite. Yes, we had the whole does she-doesn’t she want Maxon. The whole does he-doesn’t he truly want her. Or does she-doesn’t she want Aspen. And dude, YES it became confusing as heck. YES it became as frustrating as heck. But I have a horrible of habit of slipping pretty deeply into an MC’s role, assuming the author has done the job I expect of them, and so what they feel, I feel—and America was no exception to that. And if how I felt was anything to go by? No wonder the poor girl didn’t know whether she was coming or going.
Because I spent the entire book mad at Maxon, then loving Maxon, then mad at America for being confused, then mad at Maxon, then loving Maxon, then mad at America again—which all led to me feeling totally confused about the ‘other dude’. Though I do believe my mind is mostly made up by the end. Which is good—because judging by that ending, I predict (here I go again) America will have a whole other level of conflict to deal with in the third book, and I’m looking forward to (immensely) the change of scenery where that’s concerned. Whilst the conflict I mentioned arrives with a horrifying realisation for the reader (though I had suspected Maxon didn’t have as much control as is publicly portrayed—just not to this level), I loved this added depth, because I believe we needed something this powerful for the reader to forgive Maxon for everything that has had America in turmoil.
As you can probably tell from my review, my thoughts about this are still pretty random and waffly, and I suspect that’s because I’m still sitting here thinking about it, evaluating it, musing over it, wondering what’s really going to be thrown at us next—to the point I haven’t even started my next book, because I knew I’d need to try and work out my review for this one before I can move on. So before I begin to make absolutely no sense whatsoever, I’ll try and wrap up with a tight and slightly more cohesive conclusion.
Did I love The Elite as much as The Selection?
Did I like where the story was taken in this addition?
Well, it wasn’t really taken massively further than the last book. But all of those little bits of additional pieces, those side stories that help mould the characters and bring colour from the background onto the forefront, and help the reader to fall in love with all the right people … those are what helps make this story great and help to set it apart and give it the strength to stand in its own right from the first book. There are quite a few of those. And they’re all very impactful. Plus … THANK GOODNESS they’ve both quit beating about the bush and finally begun to be honest with one another.
Do I intend to read on?
Dude! Wild horses couldn’t keep me away. I NEED to know how America’s going to deal with this new conflict, and how she will now fight for what she’s realised she wants. I just hope I don’t have my love-triangle emotions tugged all over the shop again—because those nearly drove me insane in this one with not being able to make up MY mind (never mind America’s).
And finally, would I recommend?
O_O Why are we even having this conversation? *sigh* Maxon *sigh* Go and read these books. Now.