“Uglies”- Scott Westerfeld (36/52 books challenge)

Uglies This one is a legacy of my love for The Hunger Games.

I know. I just can’t get it out of my head, can I?

Oh, well.

Uglies is another young adult dystopia, this time about a society where everyone is made “pretty” after their 16th birthday. The ideal of beauty has been agreed upon, so as soon as they are old enough, teenagers have operation making them look “pretty.” This means they all become extremely beautiful, and they all generally look – and think – the way all the others do. The protagonist is Tally, who’s just going to turn 16 and can’t wait for the operation. She meets Shay, a girl who’s the same age, but who doesn’t want to turn pretty. Shay sees beauty in different shapes and imperfections, so she decides to run away beyond the city boundaries, to avoid the operation.

It’s definitely a novel with some good points about modern society. We all try to become better, prettier, different than we are. We envy others for what they have or the way they are, forgetting to be grateful for what we have and take for granted. We are conditioned to admire one kind of beauty, and forget that “the beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.” The book deals with all these subjects.

Add to it a young protagonist, action that involves running away, secrets, and conspiracy, plus a love thread, and you have a recipe for a good book.

That is why I’m not surprised it got really good reviews.

However, I have a problem with it, a problem I can’t quite name. Maybe it’s because of the main character, Tally, who seems a little… shallow? Too normal? Or maybe a little unreal/artificial. I just couldn’t get emotionally involved into any of the characters.

Maybe if it had my beloved first-person narration? But I doubt it.

Also, this book seemed uneven. Sometimes it bored me to death, and I wanted to give up, but then something interesting finally started happening.

Anyway, I would be far from discoursing anyone from reading this novel, but I don’t think I would want to read the rest of this series. Just didn’t interest me enough.

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