Series: Matched #1
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.
I knew nothing about this book when I opened it up to read it. In fact, I had never heard about it until my big sister gave it to me with the books she was letting me borrow. On the first page, I was given my first big clue about how the novel was going to go. Another dystopian future. The first thing I asked myself was why; why are dystopian future novels popular in young adult fiction right now? The Hunger Games, Divergent, and now the Matched series. It's definitely a trend right now. The reason why I think that it is so popular is because it gives authors a chance to build a new world from scratch, a world that is so many steps removed from the current world. I think it is popular with the readers because it is more fun to jump into a new world and everyone wants to have this feeling of being rebellious because every dystopian society has to have at least one person rebelling against it.
That being said, I found Matched to be a well thought out, intelligent, and romantic (in a finding romance in a dystopian future way). Ally Condie put a lot of work into creating the world of her characters. Everything that is happening in the world makes sense in relation to the rules that are almost immediately set up for the world and for the reader. I loved the fact that everything of their daily lives was regulated. It gives everything a cold, unattached feel that makes the intimate relationships more warm. The emotional side of things is more visible against the harsh backdrop of the world and the government controlling everyone.
Cassia is one favorite characters in this book. I think she has a unique personality in this world of everyone doing what they're told without questioning. The book introduces her right before her Matching ceremony. The ceremony is going to show her who she is going to be matched with - he is the person that she is supposed to be with for the rest of her life. The Society matches people based on a number of things and from all over the provinces. So when she is matched with Xander, a guy who she grew up with, she was flabbergasted, but happy. He was a good guy, and they were a good match. It's only when she sees Ky's face on the screen that she begins to question things.
At that point, it's only natural to wonder what is going on and begin asking questions, which is what Cassia does. She, who has never had a reason to question The Society, begins to wonder if they really are the best thing for the provinces.
Ally Condie sucks the reader into this world and holds the reader there until the book is over. Matched is a good match for any reader, especially ones that enjoy dystopian future YA books.