Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.
America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.
Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.
I was really looking forward to this book after loving The Selection, but unfortunately it suffered from a bout of second-book-syndrome and was a complete disappointment.
I won't deny that while the writing isn't excellent, it definitely kept me engaged and turning the page; it only took me a few hours to finish. So, there's no denying that it is a book that is quick and easy to get through, but whether that's due to the writing style or the lack of substance in the story, it's hard to tell.
I enjoyed some characters, specifically America's maids, Celeste and Marlee. Aside from them, every other character annoyed or grated on me in some way. After loving Maxon in The Selection, I was looking forward to more of him, but he ended up being a very weak character and didn't ever seem to have an opinion on anything. Aspen, as always, was positively horrific, and America herself was beyond irritating. She's possibly one of the worst main characters I have ever had to endure; selfish while claiming to care for everyone around her and arrogant while pretending to have no confidence. She makes rash decisions that make a mockery of the story, and is, above all, a complete and total hypocrite.
The main thing that let this book down was the plot. From the end of The Selection to the end of The Elite, nothing happens. All romance between America & Maxon and America & Aspen has completely dissipated and leaves behind a cringe-worthy few hundred pages of America desperately flicking between the two while claiming to be sorting herself out. There were a few instances that could have been embellished and made a little more intense and this would have lifted the story, but it seemed as if the author was too scared to commit to anything that might drastically affect the plot.
Overall, an extreme disappointment. 2/5 stars.