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…”
This week the book I am reviewing is Uglies by Scott Westerfeld . Uglies is the first book in its series, the series having the title of Uglies ; has a total of four books. In the literary world there is a progressive growth in the dystpoian genre but Uglies was perhaps one of the genre’s old occupants. Like I said it is not a latest release but none the less I think that it is great read.
The great thing about Uglies is that along with being set in an post apocalyptic world it is also a a sci-fi thriller. So it satisfies two of your cravings in one book.
Now for the book itself, it features a female protagonist with the name of Tally. Tally is fifteen year old teenager living in this world. I know some of you may be thrown off with the lead being so young, but don’t be too hasty, the character though are young but the author makes up for it with the complexity of with they are written.
The story starts with our protagonist Tally along with all the fifteen year olds with her, waiting eagerly for their sixteen birthday but not for the reasons you think; because when all the children reach puberty they are required to go through a mandatory surgical procedure making them “Pretty”.
This feature is highlighted in the book, as the name “Uglies” itself states normal isn’t enough anymore.
“In a world of extreme beauty, anyone normal is ugly.”
Fearful of war and independent thinking the government makes it a must for everyone to look alike, talk alike and ultimately think alike. They do this by making everyone Pretty.
“Perhaps the logical conclusion of everyone looking the same is everyone thinking the same.”
This is the main concept of the book, I have to hand it to Mr.Westerfeld for integrating a topic that is battled by millions, so easily and effortlessly into the story. Our story progresses with Tally when she realizes that she wouldn’t be made a Pretty until she finds Shay. Who has left their world in search of another and so Tally is made to after her.
“When she awoke, the world was on fire.”
The journey made by Tally is described is amazing though the story itself does get a little slow at times but the book redeems itself with the sheer anticipation of what will come next. Tally soon finds herself in a place that alters everything she has ever known and a revelation that will change everything. I could go on and on but if I did there would be no story for you to read, so I am stopping here.
The story itself like I said before is amazing with topics never before touched thus making it more thrilling. It asks us questions like do you want to be like everyone else or do you want to be yourself?
“History would indicate that the majority of people have always been sheep.”
As for the writing the author has chosen to write in a easy and comprehensible e manner, something that could could be read by both a younger and an older audience. There are some truly breathtaking bits and revelations that make you jump of your seats.
“What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful.”
All in all, it is a exceptional book with an extraordinary message something we tend to forget at times. I truly recommend this book to all the sci-fi and dystopian lovers out there and especially those who are waiting for something to read after the Hunger Games.
With three more books in its series Uglies is a must read. So all those book lovers this is something not to be ignored.
My Rating: Four and a half stars, Blurb