If you're looking for Princess Diaries and American Idol meet The Bachelor with a splash of post-WWIII terror thrown in for good measure, you're love this novel by Kiera Cass. I grabbed this on a whim at the library, and now I'm hooked.
America Singer is a Five, the caste devoted to the arts. Her family is filled with talent, but that doesn't do much to fill their bellies. She's in love with a Six, the working caste below hers, which is not forbidden, but still presents various challenges. To be with him, she'd be marrying down, rather than elevating his status, and while she's fine with that, he's not. Out of pride, he pushes her away, and America finds herself one of the Selected. These 35 girls from different provinces have all been "randomly" chosen to compete for the country's highest honor: marriage to Prince Maxon.
America goes to the palace nursing a broken heart, determined to make some extra money for her family, but convinced that she will never love the prince. But he's not at all what she expected, and what should be an easy choice is suddenly complicated when her former lover shows up at the palace, working as a guard. Her dilemma is left unsolved, and I can't wait for the next installment in this series.
The protagonist is definitely worth knowing, and Cass portrays an intricate and frightening future in this novel. I want to unravel more of the strange history and reality of America's world as much as I want to see what happens to her.
What are you reading this week? Any unexpected and random reads to recommend?