Matched by Allie Condie, Reviewed by Summer Jewell

From matched-book.com:

In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die.

Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s hardly any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one… until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow – between perfection and passion.

Do you value your choices? Have you ever considered what life would be like if you suddenly had no choice? You couldn’t choose your clothes, what you want for breakfast, your spouse or even how many kids you want. In Matched by Allie Condie a world like this is considered. Throughout the book, we contemplate independance and the limitations that come with a long, safe life. My favorite points of the book include the brilliant setting, the unique characters, and the empowering theme.

What first caught my attention in the novel was the dystopian setting in which diversity is obliterated. We see, in vivid detail, different areas of the community. This includes the uniform “boroughs” or neighborhoods, various spare time activities (this includes the movie theater, and a hill in which the main character, Cassia, takes a hiking class), the air train (their transportaition medium) and many more. I found it strange how similar the lives of teenagers in the novel are to teenagers today.

Also, I enjoyed the various characters I was introduced to over time. There is bubbly and charismatic Xander, anguished Ky, and thoughtful Cassia. My favorite part about the characters though, was that the author slowly revealed things through their actions that completely altered my opinion. They left me astounded.

Lastly, I was in awe of the theme. I found it genuinely amazing that the novel was not only interesting, but also inspired teens to take charge of their lives. We often forget that  we have complete control over our futures. We can read, write, go to college, and live wherever we choose. Matched taught me that when faced with opression, it is most important to live on your own terms.

I found Matched to be an extremely interesting and thought provoking book. I would recommend this to anyone who to anyone  who wants an exciting book that will keep them on edge. With a highly developed setting, diverse characters, and an inspirational theme all tie together to make one great book!

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5 responses

  1. I really liked your hook, at the beginning of your review, that way that you used questions made me interested, and I wanted to read more. Your thesis statement was very clear. You also used very nice word choices throughout your review. In your paragraph about characters, maybe you could tell us about how and why they left you astounded! I think that it is great that you were inspired by the book, those are the best types of books to read! I would be sure to check my conclusion paragraph, it looks like you have a couple of repeated words. Overall I thought that this review was very well written!

    1. Thank you. I’ll make sure to remember your advice on adding details to body paragraphs (I think you specifically mentioned the characters.).
      I also think that my teacher, Mrs. Baisden, has mentioned adding description in our rubrics. So, it’s very possible that your advice could help improve my score on my next review.
      If you wouldn’t mind, could you give me some advice on how do improve my body paragraphs without losing the intrest of my readers?
      Thanks again,
      Summer

      1. Summer,
        I as a writer have a problem with sometimes being to wordy, so I feel that I sometimes may lose my writers attention. I think that if you just be sure to stay focused on specific details from your book, I think that maybe giving an example of something that the characters did that made you interested in them, but just use specifics so that you do not lose the readers attention. So I would say stay focused on certain aspects and maybe give examples would help with body paragraphs! Great question though, hopefully my advice helped!

  2. Hi Summer,
    I loved how passionate you are about this book. It shines through your writing that this book thoroughly interested you. Your first paragraph totally caught my attention through your imagery and word choice. The only suggestions I have is in the paragraph about the characters that you might want to cite a few specific examples from the story that altered your perception about them and try to be a little more specific in the paragraph that you discussed the theme. You may want to take a look back through your writing for next time since there were a few repeated words in the concluding paragraph. Overall, your review was incredible and very well written! I’ve been wanting to read “Matched” for a while now and your review has made me want to read it even more.

    1. Dear (Ms./Mrs.) Kellie,
      Thank you. I’ll make sure that I cite more examples from the book, because upon rereading I did feel that I was being vauge in that paragraph. I’ll also vary my vocabulary from now on as well.
      My teacher, Mrs. Baisden, has also mentioned that I need to add more detail and specific expample to my reports. I’ll definitely add these aspects to my future works, and it might improve my grade or writing in general.
      If you wouldn’t mind, could you give me some advice on how to improve my writing? Specifically, I need help adding detail and length to introductory and concluding paragraphs.
      Thanks again,
      Summer

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