Book Review: Matched

image   Ally Condie wanted to be an author since a very small age. After retiring from her English teaching job to stay at home with her first child, she decided to finally become serious about pursuing her dream.

She published her first book, Yearbook, in September of 2006. It was soon followed by two more, First Day and Reunion, which completed the Yearbook Trilogy.

She wrote a few more books in-between, but her career really took off when she published Matched.

Set in the future, Matched takes place in a time where the government has complete control of everything in order to maintain optimum happiness for its people.

They have created equations to solve every problem and eliminate all stress and negative feelings.

The government uses these equations to determine where people will live, what their career will be, and even who they will marry.

Cassia Reyes is a normal teenager growing up in these times and trusting her society the same as everyone else.

In the evening on Cassia’s 17th birthday, she heads off to her very own Match Banquet to find out who she will be spending the rest of her life with.

When her name is called, Cassia is overjoyed to see her best friend, Xander’s face appear on the screen before her. That is until Xander suddenly fades out, for a split second showing the handsome features of another boy before the screen goes black.

Suddenly Cassia’s life is turned upside down as she is forced to make decisions between love and loyalty and as she ponders the thought that maybe, the government is not as perfect as it seems.

Overall, Matched is a love story, but also contains a major element of self-empowerment and discovery.

It earned a spot as one of YALSA’s Teens’ Top Ten in 2011 and has even been optioned for film rights by Disney.  Condie’s work on this piece is brilliant and deserves every bit of the fame it is receiving.

Most of the time when someone reads, they find themselves lost inside the story, practically becoming a part of it. Matched is no different, but every so often you should step back and simply look at the words so you can discover the majestic way Condie writes. I found myself blown away by the unique poetic style she uses to add deeper meaning to the overall picture.

As a fellow writer I am deeply impressed by her work.

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