Book Review: Matched by Ally Condie

MATCHED by Ally Condie
Series: Matched, #1
Publication Date: November 30th 2010 by Dutton Juvenile
Rating: |

Summary: Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate . . . until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.

Review Overview:

  • Romance in MATCHED is sweet, but nothing spectacular
  • Slow read; not much happens other than development of relationships
  • Interesting dystopian but not up to my expectations

I guess after Hunger Games my expectations for dystopian novels are set very high, and as much as MATCHED was an interesting read, it didn’t live up to those expectations.

Most of the reviews I read raved about the romance in this book, but for me, the love triangle was nothing special. The romance between Ky and Cassia was sweet at some parts, but no scenes ever made me say, “Awwww” out loud. Like the title would suggest, the focus on the book is about the Matching System and the relationships Cassia forms between Ky and also the relationship she already has with Xander. Out of the two, I lean more towards Xander, but I guess I can also see the appeal of Ky.

I was honestly expecting more about this book beyond Cassia and the Matching System. We learn more about the Society in snippets, but not enough to satisfy me as a reader. The book doesn’t really answer the why aspects of the novel. Why is Society the way it is? There’s hints of rebellion in the past, but I’m left as clueless as the characters of the book. I would have liked just a little more background to the Society than what was provided.

The novel is slow in terms of action. Nothing really happens except for the development of relationships. I was hoping for more instead of the quiet rebellion that took place in the book. For me, this really wasn’t a page-turner by any means. I liked reading it, but it wasn’t particularly exciting. Condie’s writing style sometimes felt blunt and choppy, but then she’d say something just absolutely beautiful that makes me pause at the end of the passage to reflect on her words.

As of right now, I don’t know if I’ll be reading the next one in the series. I’d have to read a lot of reviews to be convinced of it. The way the ending leaves off, there’s room for a lot more action in the second book. I guess I’ll have to wait and see. I would recommend this one to dystopian fans, but be prepared for a slow-paced read.


  1. I was actually just getting ready to post my review of this today, too. I also felt it was slow, and kind of underdeveloped honestly. I don’t know if all the rave reviews made me expect more or what, but it definitely wasn’t as amazing as I was hoping. I rated it as a high as I did only because I see potential for the next book in the series. There’s a lot of great groundwork laid out, and I hope she focuses a little less on the relationships and a little more on the world next time around.

  2. Completely agree with this – down to leaning more towards Xander even if it’s not by much. I just feel close to apathetic about this one, which is disappointing since I was initially so excited about it. Oh well. :/

  3. Oh, I can’t believe it’s the first time I’ve seen your site, it is just goooorgeous! :) Lovely review, I’m 3rd in line to get this at my library, I can’t wait to read it although I will admit I initially had huge expectations b/c of the hype, plus i usually have high hopes for dystopians, I just hope this won’t disappoint too much.. anyways, thanks for your review!!

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