Friday, March 29, 2013

Book Review: Uglies (Uglies #1) by Scott Westerfeld

Uglies (Uglies #1) by Scott Westerfeld 
Release Date: 1st January 2006
Publisher: Baker and Taylor
Format: eBook 
Pages: 432
Rating: 3.5/5.0

This book was read as part of the 2013 OTS, 2013 ODY, 2013 EBC and 2013 BSR

Summary from Goodreads:
buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery"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."

Its been a couple of days since I finished this book, and I'm still not entirely sure what I think about it. I've spent the past couple of days trying to decide what rating to give it, and I've actually found it really hard. In the end, I have to go for 3.5/5 - this book wasn't particularly good, but isn't wasn't particularly bad either - it was an interesting read, but it was also predictable and there were no standout moments for me. 

Don't get me wrong, this book was very interesting. Its an interesting world that's presented, and at first I wasn't entirely happy with it. Obviously, that is the point - this is a dystopian world that we are supposed to identify as wrong in some way. But, the way the 'Rusties' were described at the beginning of the book - I just really didn't like it. The Rusties, a pet-name used to describe what I assumed was 21st century society, were seen as basically barbaric by Tally, and that just really rubbed me the wrong way. I don't know why though - what with Tally being told this her entire life, it's perfectly normal for her to think that why - but I just really, really didn't like it. 

Moving forward, the plot to this story is pretty predictable. You know what Tally's going to have to do when Shay runs away, and what will happen when Tally does reach the Smoke. I have to admit, I wasn't entirely sure what the ending was going to be, but when I found out, it made complete sense - I think it was the perfect way to end the book and clearly sets up what's going to happen in the sequel. Overall, this was an interesting read and I will continue on with the series at some point, but it won't be until some point in the distant future. 

UPDATE: Of course I figure out what else bothered me about the book just after I put up the review - the characters. A lot of these characters were annoying. Tally at the beginning, with her hopes and dreams of becoming pretty, was annoying. Shay, throughout the entire story, annoyed me - whilst she was supposed to be especially annoying at the end, I found her the most annoying at the Smoke, after a certain someone gave Tally a certain something (if you've read the book, you'll know what I mean). And Peris - I thought he was going to be much more involved in the story, but then he just faded into the background. Honestly, some of these characters..

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