October 24, 2011

Secrets and lies in a seemingly perfect world

By Ally Condie
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Crossed begins at the point where Ally Condie's previous dystopian novel, Matched, left off: Our heroine Cassia is at a work camp in a province far from her home, hoping to find Ky, the boy she has fallen for, who has been sent to the Outer Provinces as a decoy in the war with the Society's nebulous Enemy. Soon Cassia and her new friend Indie, and Ky and his fellow decoys Vick and Eli, all find their way to the Carving, a vast network of cliffs and caves whose remote and impassible nature makes it the perfect place to conceal secrets. Some of these secrets concern the Rising, a hidden rebel group led by a mysterious Pilot. Others deal with the farmers who live in the Carving and preserve books and knowledge forbidden by the Society. Still others are secrets the Society has been keeping from Cassia, Ky and their companions—and secrets they have been keeping from each other.

Chapters alternately narrated by Cassia and Ky allow the reader to see both characters' points of view. Cassia continues to vacillate between the comfort she feels around her original Match, Xander, and the excitement Ky inspires in her. Ky, in turn, struggles with memories of his past that have left him feeling suspicious, angry and distrustful. Facing difficult choices about their respective futures, Cassia and Ky begin to question their long-held assumptions: Are the rules of the Society intended to protect its citizens, or to restrict them? Is the Rising truly any better?

Fans of the Matched trilogy will not be disappointed in this second installment, and will finish it eagerly awaiting the trilogy's conclusion.

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By Ally Condie
Dutton Children's Books
ISBN 9780525423652

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