Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Uglies - Scott Westerfeld

Description from Goodreads:

Everybody gets to be supermodel gorgeous. What could be wrong with that?

Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait. Not for her license -- for turning pretty. In Tally's world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.
But Tally's new friend Shay isn't sure she wants to be pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world -- and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer 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.

****

I was expecting. . .
A unique concept guaranteed to catch my interest and keep me glued to the pages

. . .then
I enjoyed the plot. I found the book packed with adventure. Yet, I still found myself spacing out while riffling through some of the pages.

All Shay wanted was to turn sixteen already so she can become pretty and be with her childhood friend, Peris. But somewhere along the way, she met Shay. And things just got a little more complicated. Now, Tally has to lead the authorities to Shay (who ran away) if she ever wants to turn pretty.

I salute Scott Westerfeld for the amazing imagery he provided. The way the story was written, it really felt like he did live there. In some books, after reading the setting of the book, we try to imagine how it would look like for real. Then again, there are those books where you get sucked in a whole new world after reading more or less a couple of lines. And Uglies is one of the latter. I guess the fact that I found myself almost nodding off at some of the parts of the book was due to my limited knowledge (and reading experience) on anything sci-fi. Yes, the hoverboards were amazing. But after reading about how Tally had to maneuver this way and that, it was like, argh. Information overload. But I blame myself for not having a vivid imagination. :p

As for the characters, I'm still not sure what to make of them. Tally comes off as brave, independent, and an overall good friend. Though there were times that I wanted to strangle her so she could just confess already! (ok, minor spoiler there). Shay was the typical-but-not (sometimes misunderstood) friend who you wouldn't want to piss off lest she becomes... er, not your friend. I'll refrain talking about the other characters since I want this review to remain spoiler free. :)

Uglies is the first book in what (I think) will be an amazing series. I love the concept, the writing was excellent, and the characters were all their own unique selves (which is always a good thing!) trying to live in this awe-inspiring world. Though, I did have some problems with some of the sci-fi aspects of the story, I'm hoping I would have gotten over those by the time I read Pretties, the sequel to Uglies.

Plot: 4/5
Writing: 5/5
Book Love: 3.5/5

10 comments:

Book Crazy Jenn said...

We just bought the series - my daughter Aubrey is SOOO excited, she's reading Blue is for Nightmares now - and the Uglies will be her next books...Loved your review, I will show her this tonight... :)

GMR said...

Great review! I've read book 1, 2, and most of 3 in this particular series. I definitely understand the "sci-fi overload" part...but once you get use to it, it just becomes another aspect of the overall appeal. Good luck on the next book and thanks for sharing!

MissAttitude said...

So when I picked up Uglies I had no idea it was sci-fi. I was a bit unpleasantly suprised, but then I really got into it and I decided I really liked it! I haven't read the rest of a series, but I intend to. Great review :)

austenfan said...

@book crazy Jenn: I hope Aubrey likes it! :)

@GMR: Thanks! I really need to get my hands on the next two books.

@MissAttitude: I really liked it too and now, I think I'm starting to like sci-fi as well. Er, kind of. :p

Mel (He Followed Me Home) said...

I haven't read this series yet either but want to. I recently read his newest book, Leviathan, and loved it :)

Rebecca :) said...

I have Uglies but have been waiting to start it until the new year, after I finish a few books I need to for challenges. I am looking forward to it. Reading YA is new to me and I am surprised to be enjoying it as much as I am!

austenfan said...

@Mel: I need to read Leviathan too! :)

@Rebecca: I know what you mean. I didn't use to read YA before, but when I started, whoa, it was like a new, exciting world! Haha.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Ooo great review!

wdebo said...

Awesome review!! I love the Uglies "Trilogy," hope you enjoy "Pretties!!"

Sarah said...

I see that you're reading the Pretties now. I think that was my favorite of the 3 novels. Also be sure to check out the Extras when you're finished. Seperate but great and you get to learn alot about Tally through it.

Anyway I reviewed the series on my blog www.sarahdarlington.com if you want to check it out.

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