Thursday, March 17, 2011

Book Review: Matched by Ally Condi

One look at the cover and I knew I had to read Matched!  The trailer sealed it for me (trailer link).What is the significance of the green dress?  What does the bubble mean? Matched to what or whom?

All these questions are answered in this fantastic dystopian romance. Ally Condie presents the perfect blend of coming-of-age, love triangle, and life in an alternate society.  The characters are pure of heart, respectable and the inclusion of the parents as intelligent, important characters made me love it even more.

Cassia lives in a world where everything is "optimal" - your meals provide optimal nutritional specifically designed for your body. Your job, and even your marriage are "matched".  While Cassia was excited that her childhood friend, Xander, was chosen as her match - something glitched when she reviewed his electronic profile. She sees another familiar face - Ky. How could this be? In their perfect society, nothing ever happens on accident. And that's just it - maybe it wasn't an accident?

I enjoyed the purity of the characters and their budding romance, but even more I enjoyed the aspects of the society. The way Ally Condie describes Cassia continually monitoring even her own thoughts to keep them in line with the society's standards just blew me away. The story reminded me of a modern, more appealing, flip-side of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. I also enjoyed the present, first-person view - making it a quick read.

There were only a few things that bugged me about this story and they were just minor.  I felt that  after a lifetime of molding by society, Cassia was too quick to rebel and throw her emotions into someone she just realized is not who she thought he was. It was as if she could have had more interraction and more background and connection to the character before making these daring leaps. The other thing is that these characters' names are almost identical to the main characters in Firelight. Not that I think there's any copying or name-stealing, more likely these names are just popular right now, Xander and Cassia in Matched, Xander and Cassian in Firelight

Overall, I loved Matched! A clean, fun, fast read that will make you ponder societal control and make you want a shimmering green dress. While a few other books may rank a little higher in my all-time favorite list, for a strictly Young Adult recommendation, this one is absolutely the best! 
I give matched ***** 5 Shimmering Green Stars

Watch for the sequel Crossed this year and the third book in 2012. Now that the characters are truly matched- I have high hopes their story will be even deeper and  more adventurous in Crossed!


  1. I liked the romance and society set up too. Thanks for review.
    Brandi from Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  2. The similar names would bug me too. But it sounds like a pretty good story. I don't know if I should keep reading your reviews. They make me want to read them and the list of "wanna read" books is growing fast. Thanks for keeping me updated on what's new and worth it.

  3. You can just consider my blog your TBR pile (To Be Read) and of course I can always share.....

  4. Leah, hate to use a comment section to ask a question about a book but here goes. Would you be willing to help with our Buy A Boy A Book Campaign? Feel free to treat this a really cold call but you seem to be into boys and reading and we're looking for mom "Mavens." Here's the web link to our Buy A Boy A Book page:
    Feel free to delete this post as soon as you'vr read it. Email me at: and I'll explain more about our free book give away. Again, sorry for doing it this way. EJ

  5. Thanks for contacting me. I took a loik at and that's a great campaign! I will consider passing on a copy in the near future. I love getting books in the hands of boys.