Review: Matched by Allyson Condie

“Wrought with tense emotions and the struggle of one girl to love free, Matched is a brilliant coming to the dystopian genre.”

Your verdict:

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (22 votes, average: 4.59 out of 5)
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Title:Matched
Author:Condie, Allyson
Publisher:Dutton Juvenile
Pages:384

From Goodreads: In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die.

Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s barely any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one . . . until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow—between perfection and passion.

I have heard a lot of murmurings in the blogosphere about Matched. It seems people either really love it or completely misunderstand the concept that Ally Condie was writing about. It is being marketed as dystopia when in fact Condie’s world is actually a Negative Utopia. What is the difference you ask?

Dystopia is the exact opposite of Utopia. A world where everything is turned upside down and there is an immediate problem that needs to be addressed in society. There are epics amounts of drama and the stories tend to leave you emotionally exhausted after. Negative Utopia is a society that is conditioned to the surroundings, there is plenty of food and everything seems to be mostly okay and the parts that aren’t okay no one really notices because of said conditioning. It is like an extreme communism, everyone is fed, everyone is housed, everyone is clothed, everyone is fed, but all the food, clothes, housing, jobs all the major decisions are decided for you. No free will needed.

Condie is an amazing writer that has me on the verge of my seat waiting for a sequel to Matched. Cassia is a very reluctant hero. She doesn’t want her life to change and she doesn’t really have a lot of guts. However when it matters Cassia steps up and assumes the hero position and I cannot wait to see how she is going to challenge The Society to be with the boy she truly loves.

Matched is a story of awakening, of growing up, of fighting for something you really believe in even when that doesn’t seem to be the smartest choice to make. I loved the world building and the side characters like Cassia’s grandfather. Matched really isn’t a love triangle story, which boy to choose is more the decision of which life path to take. Struggle or go with the flow of The Society.

If you like dystopia and remember that Matched is Negative Utopia you will love Matched!

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11 Responses so far

  1. Gravatar

    I know what you mean about people being confused. I really liked this one too. I need a sequel NOW. That’s bad, because Matched hasn’t even released yet. lol

  2. Gravatar

    I know! I want to know what Cassia does next!

  3. Gravatar

    I liked this a lot – BUT I missed the passion that would bump it up to love. Still, I think it is very worth reading for the discussion alone. And of course I can’t wait for the sequel!

  4. Gravatar

    I can’t wait for the sequel but agree with Lenore that I liked this but did not love it. Thanks for differentiating dystopia and negative utopia.

  5. Gravatar

    *phew* I’m glad to hear you liked this book, I’m so looking forward to reading it, but I am trying NOT to set it up for failure…because I really really want to love it, which, as you know, can backfire, haha.

  6. Gravatar

    I’m on cold medicine and typo-ed my own blog above, oops. I think it’s time for bed…after reading some more tonight of course ;)

  7. Gravatar

    Great distinction between dystopia and negative utopia. You are absolutely right.
    I just read this book myself, and really enjoyed it. The only thing that surprised me was how slow Cassia is to realize that Things Are Not What They Should Be. I liked the revelation at the end too, when she remembers that the name of her street and her whole neighborhood have been changed before. Subtle and a bit creepy!

  8. Gravatar

    Well, I was looking at the book for a while and just decied to buy it last night. I was reading it in Walmart and ran into a wall. THE BOOK FROM WHAT I READ IS SO GOOD! (I was on Chapter 3?) I can’t wait to continue it, but I’m on another series right now. Maybe I read this when I finsh the book I’m on?

  9. Gravatar

    I loved this book – I think people don’t because being marketed as a dystopia – readers expect some action/rebellion/uprising. None of which happens in this first book – I thought it was it was a strong foundation for all of that to come in the trilogy. It was subtle but sinister and creepy – Condie gives us so much information about this world, but also holds back of letting us know too much about the Society.

    I thought it was excellent.

    (Also I love how concise your reviews are! Mine can get really long sometimes! Lovin’ your blog!)

  10. Gravatar

    OMG this book is AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i cant wait for the sequel!!!!!!!!! ahhh cant wait! it is full of romance tragedy and friendship! i love it!!!!!!!!!

  11. Gravatar

    THANKS a lot. Your review is great. I’m going to buy the Trilogy right away

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