quarta-feira, 21 de agosto de 2013

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Synopsis (from Goodreads)

Tally Youngblood is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait for the operation that turns everyone from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to party. But new friend Shay would rather hoverboard to "the Smoke" and be free. Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world and it isn't very pretty. The "Special Circumstances" authority Dr Cable offers Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.

My Thoughts: 

This book had been on my wish list for a long time. The reviews I had read were quite positive and it seemed to have an interesting concept - somewhat different from what I had read so far. Needless to say, my expectations were relatively high and I was really excited to start this series.

Starting with what I loved about this book.

I really enjoyed the whole concept and the idea that people needed plastic surgery to enter the different stages of their lives. Yes, it was a bit weird that everyone kind of looked the same and that they were so focused on their appearance - something that I (personally) find quite unhealthy and excessive -  but in their world it made perfect sense to be like that and to basically bash the way they looked before the surgery.  The idea that was promoted by this society was incredibly wrong and appalling but I enjoyed it because it made me think about it and because it made the story a lot more captivating.

I also liked its messages and how the book tried to educate the reader through its story. However I couldn't help but feel that some of them were targeted to a younger audience (maybe between the ages of 14-16) but I was still able to appreciate them and understand what they conveyed.

Unfortunately, there were some things that didn't sit that well with me.

I felt that it's pace was somewhat irregular. The beginning was fast; Shay and Tally became best friends instantly and soon began the drama. Then it dragged for about 50 pages and when Tally arrived to a new city, again, it all seemed to happen too fast. It annoyed me and it actually compromised my connection with the story.

The characters weren't (in my opinion) that relatable and I felt that they weren't that well written. Shay didn't seem to have a mind of her own, was a bit childish and easily influenced by others. Tally was smart but too brainwashed by the society's ideology (I can't really blame her for that) but I liked her transformation throughout the book and the fact that she started to see things differently. Finally, there was David; he seemed a lot more rational than the other characters and I liked how knowledgeable he seemed to be. Unfortunately this is all I can say about this characters; they didn't have much more going on ...

I also didn't like the fact that this book was written in a way that was actually distracting and confusing. I wouldn't always gather what was actually going on and it wasn't sufficiently engrossing - I even got sidetracked a couple of times.

Overall I enjoyed this book and I felt that it set some interesting foundations for the following books. It's a bit juvenile but I was able to appreciate it, its story and messages. I just hope that the next books are more enthralling and that the characters have a bigger development. 

I give it 3,5 out of 5 stars

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