Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Professional #TwinTuesday Literary Travel Critic

I'm not really a sci-fi gal in general, and neither is my #TwinTuesday artistic partner, Lee.  That's the beauty of this week's offering.  Obviously, as literacy educators, we're all about books (expected), but not really all about sci-fi (unexpected).   Next, pair the books we haven't read with a little leather, and we've got an edgy combo.

Speaking of edgy, let me professionally review the first three books of The Selection Series by Kiera Cass.

As you might guess from the covers, the books are sort of silly and overwrought.  Ordinarily when a series captivates a large percentage of my students, I'll read the first installment and then beg them breathlessly to tell me what happens in the others.  I've done this with Marie Lu's Legend series, Veronica Roth's Divergent series, and Robert Muchamore's Cherub series, to name a few.  But The Selection!  Cass winds romance, jealousy, violence, rebellion, and class warfare into the irresistible story of the fetching and fiesty America Singer, a struggling low-caste musician who enters The Selection - the competition to become the wife of Prince Maxon Schreave.  I read the first three books one after the other, even purchasing the third for myself because I couldn't wait for the school library copy. Cass's writing becomes crisper and more lively as the books progress.  The plot, while predictable on a basic level, also twists and shifts pleasurably.  These are solid three-star books.  Silly, yes, but also addictive, clever, and super fun. If not for the covers, I'd even think Shef would like them.  Maybe the publisher can reissue the series with the male leads on the covers?  That's my suggestion to increase readership with the male-identified.

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