Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander's face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate... until she sees Ky Markham's face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.
The Society tells her it's a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she's destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can't stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society's infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she's known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.
©2010 Ally Condie (P)2010 Penguin
I was worried about picking up this book because so many people were bashing it as a rip off of 'the giver'. I could not find many reviews that praised this particular story. I have not read the giver so i cannot agree with them, but i did read this book and i can say that i loved it. The structure of the society was not as big a part of the story for me as the events surrounding the characters was.
The book takes place in a dystopian society and you are immersed in it so much that when Cassia begins to open her eyes it is subtle. I really enjoyed that fact because in a lot of YA books the main character is really blunt with their epiphany. I enjoyed the way it was written and how realistic it felt even though the environment is like nothing we have experienced. I am excited for the next installment, but if the book were to end here i would not be dissatisfied. The main character is strong and she really kept the story interesting. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a story of teenage rebellion and strong characters.
The narrator did a great job. No complaints here.
When my sister suggested this book to me, I wasn't sure I would like it. Genetically engineered societies means that disabilities are eliminated by default. That makes it difficult for me to "find myself" in the book because I already know going in that neither I nor my husband or son would be found in this oh-so-perfect society. But that wasn't a problem. Ally Condie crafted together such an artful weaving of character and setting with just enough ties to our own world to be believable that I was pulled in right away. Told from the point of view of someone who genuinely believes in the infalability of the Society and its statistics, Cassia moves right along as she reasonably explains away euthanasia or drug-induced amnesia while the reader's heart pounds at the deceptive logic of it all. There is a love story at the center of the book, but it wasn't the love story itself that pulled me in. Unlike other love triangle tales, one potential match isn't "wrong" and the other "right." I truly believe that Cassia would have been/will be happy with either Xander or Ky. To me, that's not the point of the story at all. Is it better to have the choice or not? No matter how perfect the society is planned to be, it will always come down to the power held in the hands of imperfect people.
Others have criticized the book for being nothing new, but I think that's unfair. Have dystopian tales been told before? Sure. Do others examine the same debates regarding personal freedom, secret knowledge, finding the right spouse? Absolutely. Matched, in my opinion, tells it well on its own merits.
I found this book to be so well crafted that it demanded my attention. Most of the time, I can balance reading multiple books at a time: one on audio, one on ebook, one on paper, etc. While I was reading Matched, however, it claimed my inner voice. I would try to read another book and find myself hearing Cassia and having to stop and remember that this was an entirely different world. For me to have that reaction alone says something.
On a lighter note, as a teacher who still emphasizes the value of cursive writing and poetry, I loved the twist Matched brought to those two arts often dismissed in today's society. There is a value in creating rather than simply sifting through facts and regurgitating the right ones at the right time.
Reading is a discount ticket to everywhere
Cassia lives in a futuristic society where all decisions are made for her/them, including whom to marry. When paired with her handsome best friend, she glimpses the picture of another boy and spends the book getting to know him and questioning authority. The plot is just like Lois Lowry's, "The Giver". However, the characters and love triangle are more detailed and appeal to a teenage girl audience of 10-14. Good read for your teenage daughter and could be an interesting movie or CW series.
The narrator does a great job, but was an inappropriate choice. She sounds like she's 12 years old and not as intelligent or strong as the main character, Cassia. I may have enjoyed this one more if I'd picked up the book instead.
Another in the plethora of dystopian YA fiction that is to be found, Matched is actually quite good and different from The Hunger Games and Divergent. It's less death-defying, which is the huge difference. There's no violence.
But there is a controlling Society who manages every single part of a person's life, down to the person whom they are to marry. And this is where this particular dystopian story differs.
This story is told well. Some of the prose is quite lovely. The characters are full people. And as a first in a trilogy, it's a good start. I'm intrigued enough to want to read the second book, Crossed.
The narrator is very good, with the perfect youthful voice for the first person narration.
I am a passionate devourer of chocolate and books. I also listen to audiobooks and drink chocolate. When I die, I don't want to be embalmed!
This story is set in a dystopian future where everything you do is planned for you. The ‘Society’ decides what clothes you wear, where you work, who you will marry, when you will have children, and when you die. The story revolves around three main people: Cassie, Ky, and Xander. Cassie and Xander have known each other since birth and Ky since he was around 10.
When you are 17 you get to go to a Match Banquet and find out who you are going to marry. At Cassie’s banquet they call Xander as her Match.
Everyone is so happy that Cassie and Xander are matched, now neither child will have to leave to live in another city with their match. Even though Cassie knows just about everything about Xander, she puts the data card into the computer port at her home just to see what is on it. She is very surprised that Ky’s face pops up … just for a second, but it was there.
The Society rushes in to tell her it was a mistake. Because of something Ky’s father did, Ky has been given the label ‘aberration’ and will never be allowed to be Matched. Now she is curios and that curiosity will lead her to want to learn more about Ky. The more Cassie learns, the more she realizes that she is in love with Ky. Real love. The type of love expected from her by Xander as his Matched girl. But Ky’s love is against the rules. If Cassie breaks the rules not only will she be punished, but her whole family could be punished also.
We enjoyed listening to this book. When we picked it, we didn’t realize that it was a trilogy, so you can imagine our surprise when it didn’t have a final conclusion at the end. As a matter of a fact, there were many things hinted at but never explored. So you are left feeling that you only got part of a story. I am sure that is a trick by the author to get us to want to read the next in the series when it finally comes out. Which we will do, but still …
Kate Simes has the voice that sounds closer to 10 or or 11 than 17, but it didn't distract from the story
This trilogy is both entertaining and intriguing. Match that with the sweet voiced narration that Kate Simses provided and you have a winning combination.
....before I read it.....it has a really cool website that caught my interest and of course the author is from Utah so that also was a plus.....I was intrigued by the premise of being 'matched' to someone and entering into a contract to live together and have children and make a family unit. The matching was done to make the most healthy and near perfect population possible. It helped to weed out all diseases and sickness. This world seems perfect until it starts falling apart and Cassia begins to realize that her world is not so happy and perfect. She will unwittingly be the catalyst that starts the rebellion of the people against the 'system'.....there is romance and a bit of mystery in the story....and while reading this book I realized that I would be a HUGE troublemaker in this world for I would HATE to have all my decisions decided for me by the world leaders/system authorities......it really makes you think about how blessed you are to have the option of choosing between things and making up your own mind....something I really enjoy to do....I am really looking forward to reading the next 2 books in this trilogy.....it will just be a challenge to wait for them to be released....
I love this type of literature. Dystopia!!! If you are a fan of Lois Lowry's "The Giver" you will most definitely enjoy this. While it is from a teenage girls perspective, and romance is certainly not overlooked, the story is well written and leaves you wanting more! The sequel due in November of 2011!!
Lost in Literature
Yes, I would. I think hearing the voices, rather than just reading the book, added quite a bit to the story.
I liked that she changed voices and used some emotion. Other narrators don't do that as much.
I do plan on continuing on with the series.
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?-- Mary Oliver
Ally Condie gives us a dystopic society through the eyes of a sweet yet strong young girl who begins questioning the life she's always been conditioned to believe was the one meant for her. While society may have statistics and numbers on its side, this story is about the indomitable human spirit and a love that refuses the odds.
The narration was well done and meshed well with the story rather than being a distraction. This is an excellent book for Young Adults because it begs the reader to ask questions about our own society and lives. It lacks the violence and grandeur of a book like the Hunger Games but will perhaps encourage readers to appreciate the small freedoms in life a bit more: having the world at our fingertips via the internet, being able to pick up and read a book of poetry that has not been censored down to the 100 best poems, look at a painting, knowing it is not one of only 100 deemed useful to keep. Simply thinking itself becomes a luxury in the controlled and constantly monitored world of "Matched".
Not the most uplifting of books, but certainly one worth reading and heeding.
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