Author: Scott Westerfeld
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: 8th February 2005
Tally Youngblood is about to turn sixteen, and she can’t wait for the operation that turns everyone from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to party. But new friend Shay would rather hoverboard to “the Smoke” and be free. Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world and it isn’t very pretty. The “Special Circumstances” authority Dr Cable offers 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. (From Goodreads, 26th February 2013)
I have wanted to read Uglies for a long time, ever since I saw the razor blade on the cover of Specials – morbid I know but was something that intrigued my – at the time – teenage mind. I never got around to reading this book until last year, a good 5 or so years since I first set eyes on it. So maybe I had set myself up to an ‘incredible read’ that wasn’t going to appear for me. Maybe because I was older when I read it also made it poor for me. I just really don’t know. But I was unimpressed.
So I have seen lots of bloggers rave about the series and it appears on many a bookshelf tour, and I’ll admit I love the idea – becoming ‘pretty’ at age 16 so everyone is equal in that department. But also as you get further into the book the more sinister the whole situation gets and that’s why I am going to en-devour to read the other three books in the series, because yes it did get better nearer the end of the book, and I hope that will continue in the next books.
After (for me) a slow start the novel does pick up pace, we begin to learn from those who have escaped the cities why they are against the operation to become pretty and their theories on why it is done.
I felt at the start the book was a bit too childish but I hope that as we get into more conspiracies and more run ins with the city authorities – which I guess is what happens in the next books – it will pick up a more adult theme to hold my interest.
Maybe this is not the dystopian series for me. Maybe it will be. Maybe years of wanting to read it have made it impossible for me to enjoy it. Maybe I’m to old now. Maybe it isn’t the genre for me.
But watch this space as the last three books in the quadrillogy – Pretties, Specials, and Extras – are on my ‘Dust of that Shelve’ list of books I need to read this year! I hope, in fact I pray I enjoy them and that this first book was just a slow start with some teething problems because I really want to love this series!!!!
Sorry but 2 out of 5.