YA Review: The Selection Series and a Huge Royal Giveaway

Today’s post by Melissa Carpenter | @MelissaCarp

The Selection

Update: the winners of this giveaway are Brooke, Mandy, and Kim P. You’ll be receiving an email shortly. Thanks to everyone who entered!

I’ve heard people describe THE SELECTION series as The Bachelor meets THE HUNGER GAMES, which is a pretty accurate description in terms of the entertainment value, but it’s really so much more than that. For one, the “bachelor” in this case is a gorgeous prince (and don’t most of us dream of that at least a little bit?) looking for his bride. For another, the main character, America Singer, is far more amazing than most of the backstabbing women we love to hate on The Bachelor.

In the world of THE SELECTION, there’s a caste system in place designed to keep the peace in an unsteady future (though not a crazy sci-fi future) through a hierarchy of its people. Royalty are 1s, nobles are 2s, and so on and so forth, with wealth and power reducing with each step down. America Singer, a 5, has grown up in a family with very little resources. She’s had a secret love with a childhood friend, Aspen, that has little hope of surviving because he’s a 6 and she’s expected to marry higher. When the royal family announces a Selection to find Prince Maxon a princess, America registers in the hopes of being chosen and having the chance to earn some money (the girls are compensated for their time) for her family. She is shocked to find herself among the 35 candidates chosen to come live in the castle as Maxon chooses a wife.

The 35 girls make both friends and enemies while largely staying out of the politics of running a country, but America isn’t like most girls. She’s feisty and intelligent and catches Maxon’s eye right from the beginning. America is driven by a desire not just to improve her own family’s situation, but to shed light on the weaknesses of the caste system and how it negatively impacts the lower levels. I absolutely loved her character for her strength and determination.

There is bit of a love triangle happening between America, Aspen, and Maxon, but it’s very well done and I love the resolution of it. I enjoyed the dreaminess of the royal setting and the realistic feeling of the political climate, and I am always, always, always a sucker for a story that showcases a teenager standing up for what’s right in an effort to make their world a better one. I should also mention that this is a pretty clean series as far as content goes; I’m totally comfortable having this in the middle school library, though its appeal reaches much higher in age groups.

Now, this IS a series, but the good news is that the final book came out recently so you can easily binge-read them all this summer. From THE SELECTION, the girls are narrowed down to a field of eight in THE ELITE, and then even further in THE ONE. The story of the next generation is continued in two additional books, both of which are also out, so you don’t have to wait for those either. I definitely recommend reading all the way through to the end – Kiera Cass is an excellent writer and she wrapped the whole series up amazingly in the final book, THE CROWN.

OwlCrateNow, OwlCrate: Another thing I’m loving right now is subscription boxes. It’s just fun to have a happy thing show up in the mail alongside the bills and junk mail, you know? So, I’ve done some research on YA Lit boxes and found one I’m really excited about: OwlCrate. I love their boxes, which are built around a monthly theme and include one great YA title and related swag. And guess what June’s theme was? ROYALTY. It’s perfect.

So, the wonderful people at OwlCrate have decided to give THREE of those Royalty boxes away to She Reads readers. Just comment below and let us know something you’re excited about reading this summer, or why you’d like to receive the box. We’ll pick our winners at random and notify you soon.

We also have our very own discount code for OwlCrate – if you’d like to subscribe (like I am, because it’s too exciting not to), enter the code SHEREADS15 at checkout for a 15% discount.



The first book in the captivating, #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series! Discover a breathless fairy-tale romance with swoon-worthy characters, glittering gowns, fierce intrigue, and a dystopian world that will captivate readers who loved Veronica Roth’s Divergent, Ally Condie’s Matched, and Lauren Oliver’s Delirium.

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape a rigid caste system, 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, and competing for a crown she doesn’t want.

Then America meets Prince Maxon—and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

32 Responses to YA Review: The Selection Series and a Huge Royal Giveaway

  1. Barry Collins July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I would love to win one of these three boxes to present to my daughter. She has had it rough lately with bills and veterinary expenses. She loves to read and has since high school. She is presently attending a community college to better herself in the future. Thank you so much for consideration.

  2. Glynis July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    You always highlight the best books! I’m so impressed thread days with the quality and selection of YA books. Not like it was 25 years ago when I was 16! Owlcrate….what a fun idea. My daughter would love this.

  3. Paige Carroll July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    Wow! Both the series and the subscription box sound great! Thank you for having the contest. The “book nerd” in me and my 23 year old daughter would love to win!

  4. Vickie Carpenter July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I would love to surprise my young teen granddaughter with this. She has been going through a lot of changes and family challenges the past few months. She loves books and reading is a great escape and distraction from stress.

  5. Brooke July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I love this column and forward it to my 3 YA nieces! I also like the selections and can’t wait to get started on this the Royalty series! As for the the Owlcrate…that is just fun stuff! thank you! ~Brooke

  6. Sue Fernandez July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I’m excited to read “Unrivaled,” with my daughter. We know the author!

  7. Betsy Hunter July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    My daughter would die if something that cool showed up in the mail. She made us all nuts about the selection and because of her, we’re hunger games fans as well.

  8. Caleigh July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    First of all the Selection series is one of my favorites!! Also I have recently tried one of Owl Crates boxes and absolutely loved it. (It was just a little to expensive to pay for it monthly for a future college student). So I would really love to win one of these! I’m looking forward to reading Outlander this summer as I have heard a lot about the series and there is even a TV show to go with it (and let’s face it I’m addicted to television). Plus, the whole historical fiction genre is so interesting to me!

  9. Phaedra July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I’ve been curious about this series, seeing it everywhere and wondering if it had any substance. Now I know that I can easily recommend it to my very own YA girl who is a voracious reader. Which leads me to the OwlCrate- sounds delightful~ Would love a chance to win and try this out with her! As for me, my reading list keeps growing and growing because of SheReads. I’m excited about so many books this summer, I can’t list them all

  10. Katie Perez July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I would love to win so that I can finally settle down and relax this summer. As a full time working mama in the tech world there is nothing I love more then YA as I can just escape and relax.

  11. Hannah Martin July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    This book sounds really good and I would love to read it. This Owlcrate thing is such a cool idea! One book I’ve been really excited about reading this summer is,”Thirteen Reasons Why”. One reason being that everyone I know that has read it says it’s amazing, another reason is that I’ve had a friend recently attempt suicide, and it’s extremely difficult to have been there and not been able to stop it…reading is sort of my escape from issues in real life, you know?

  12. Mandy July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I’m a HUGE fan of the Selection series and would love to have another copy of The Selection to put in my classroom! I just signed up for the OwlCrate wait list. Hope to be able to subscribe soon!

  13. Jillian Rosmon July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    This is such a fabulous idea! I love getting books in the mail! A book I am excited to read this summer, and it just happens to fall in the royalty theme, is The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan. It is not YA, but the story is very similar to the actual Royals, William and Kate. He is Royal, she is not. They meet at school, fall in love, etc. And as a person who woke up at 4 am to watch the wedding live I am ecstatic to read this! I discovered this from a girl whose blog I follow regularly and she called this her favorite novel from 2015. I just got it from B&N online a couple of days ago. Great giveaway, and I will be looking into Owlcrate for sure

  14. Stephanie July 11, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I would love to get this box for my daughter. She is finishing up The Selection series and has absolutely loved it.

  15. Heather Adams July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    What fun! I have been on the library waiting list for the first book in this series for what seems like forever… The story sounds so intriguing and it’s hard to beat that gorgeous cover!

  16. Denise M July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    I really want to read the last Selection book and also finally the Maze Runner series

  17. Cali July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    Is love one for my daughter, who is an amazing writer and love s to read. She is currently sharing that love with my two beautiful grandchildren. Let the love of reading never end. 🙂

  18. Sally July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    After reading your review of The Selection, I want to read that book! I’m also looking forward to reading Liane Moriarty’s new book coming out Truly, Madly, Guilty

  19. Jennifer July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    I love all things Royal and my friend’s little girl has told me all about this series and how much she loves it!! I’m looking forward to reading Karen White’s Flight Patterns and Beatriz William’s A Certain Age.

  20. Amber K. July 11, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    I am really excited to read a middle grade novel called Nine, Ten: and it’s about 9/11. Now of course I kind of want to pick up this series since you have really talked it up! So many books, so little time…

  21. Kim P. July 12, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I admit that I’ve shied away from this series but your review has changed my mind. I think I’ll give it a try. Owlcrate looks like fun. Who doesn’t love getting books in the mail?

  22. Jessica L. July 12, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I really loved the Selection series, but haven’t read the companion books yet. What a neat subscription box, definitely makes a trip to the mailbox more pleasant! I’m really looking forward to reading “Ready Player One” this summer, as I’ve heard so much about it and want to see what it’s all about.

  23. Teresa Ahrenholtz July 13, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    I’ve actually already read two books I was looking forward to this summer. I have one more and will likely start it soon.

  24. Susan G July 13, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    Oh my! I’ve got about 20 books I bought and need to read…so I will pick just one… “Through the Eyes of the Lion” by Levi Lusko.
    Thanks SheReads!

  25. Laurie M. July 14, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    What a great subscription box! “The Selection” sounds like a fun read and I love that the whole series is available for a binge read. You know us so well! This summer I’m anxiously awaiting the release of Louise Penny’s, “A Great Reckoning”.

  26. s July 14, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    This series sounds intriguing…fun , easy and engaging summer series read!

  27. Heather July 16, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    Yay! These books are on my to read list–they look like so much fun. I am looking forward to reading The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian also.

  28. Jillian M July 18, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    After reading Melissa’s review, I would love to begin reading The Selection series! I love the idea of a Young Adult Literature subscription box! This would be a great way for me to get ideas of YA literature to put in my classroom library for my students to read and love as well.

  29. Julie July 18, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    I’m excited about reading You Will Know Me by Megan Abbott this summer. I love a good thriller, and it looks like it won’t disappoint me.

  30. Alice @ Arctic Books July 19, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    Ah, I loved THE SELECTION series and I can’t wait to read THE CROWN; it’s the only book in the series I haven’t read yet. I would love to win an OWLCRATE because I’ve seen so many fantastic things about the subscription. One book I’m really looking forward to reading is A COURT OF MIST AND FURY!

  31. DarcyO July 20, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    This sounds great for my daughter and I’m sure I’ll enjoy it too! We’ll have to check out OwlCrate. I’m looking forward to reading Louise Penny’s next Three Pines mystery also.

  32. Jen July 23, 2016 at 10:17 pm #

    I can’t wait for Emily Giffin’s First Comes Love

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