Thursday, July 17, 2014

Book Review: The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection (The Selection #1)
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: Harper Teen, 336 Pages
Publication Date: April 24, 2012

From Goodreads:
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself—and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

So many of our regular readers know that I teach courses on women and gender studies and many of my reviews often focus on the role that the construction of gender plays in the books.  I love what I teach because I can often challenge college students to think critically about what they think they know and why they believe what they do.  As a feminist scholar, I teach that men and women are BOTH limited by society’s ideas about what is socially acceptable masculine and feminine behaviors.  While there are both necessary and socially constructed differences, differences do not have to create social inequalities.  The entire time I was reading The Selection I found myself thinking this would be a GREAT book for generating interesting discussion among students.  Some of the topics I would bring up would be the regulation and punishment of sexual behaviors, gendered expectations for helping one’s family, and gender dynamics among women competing for power, to name just a few.  For those who have read this book, did you also pay attention to these topics or did something else stand out for you? 

Posted By: Sheri

1 comment:

  1. TBH, I can't say that I really thought about that while reading this book, but I could discuss it. I'm curious whether or not you LIKED the book viewing it through this lens?