I am writing this book review for the EB First Look Program.
I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a light-hearted romance book with almost every cliche trope there is. Now that might sound like an insult, but I know there are people out there, like myself, who just want to read a book that makes us gush and this book does that. I first read this book in middle school, but I liked it so much that I re-read the series at least once a year. This was the first book I cried to, and looking back the reaction was dramatic, but I connected so much to the character that every emotion they felt, I felt as well. Additionally, as much as I commented about this book being lighthearted, it is more than just a book form of The Bachelor. It tackles some deeper societal issues and the characters are also placed in dangerous situations. America, one of the chosen candidates in the Selection learns how to truly become a princess not only in the new makeup and clothes but in the way she treats her subjects and handles crises. This book shows young girls that they can be both smart and beautiful and ambitious and selfish and compassionate. Because no one is perfect and we all mess up sometimes but the important thing is to learn and try harder the next time. Further, while there are antagonists, the series as a whole does a good job of not vilifying certain characteristics. I really appreciated that though America’s reaction to all of the other competing girls was honest and realistic, she grew throughout the series, and as such her perspective on the other girls matured as well. While the book is enjoyable and romance-filled, if you look deeper there are many valuable lessons that can be learned from it. For these reasons I would recommend that younger children, around middle school age, give the entire Selection series a try.