Book Review: The Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

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Okay, so this is Monday’s post and it’s Sunday night.  But I have a BIG day ahead of me tomorrow! So here it is!
First – let me start by saying that I love Scott Westerfeld.  I love his novels, The Last Days and Peeps – naturally, I had to pick up The Uglies!

The Uglies takes place  in what seems to be a post apocalyptic word where everyone who turns sixteen must have an operation to become “Pretty.” (Such a great idea, isn’t?) There are  the “Littlies” (I love that), who are basically any kid younger than twelve – the “Uglies” (hello puberty) any kid between thirteen and sixteen, and the “New Pretties, Pretties, and Middle Pretties” (sixteen plus). Everyone is the same color.  Yikes!

This operations are created under the pretense of achieving world peace (yes, I said world peace) – everyone would get along better if they were all Pretty in the same cookie cutter way, right?

The novel follows Tally Youngblood – an Ugly who is about to turn sixteen. She is looking forward to becoming Pretty and joining her soon to be boyfriend (unsaid) Peris – who is already Pretty. But when Tally meets Shay, a girl who shares her birthday, she is introduced to a world she never knew existed.  The Resistance is made up of a crew of Uglies who live in hiding refusing to have the operation. They live in the  “Rusty Ruins” (alluring to all the pre-apocalyptic generations, basically us, using too much steel).

As I read the book I wondered if the Uglies where in fact normal like us, and the Pretties were some kind of horrific pig faces (yes, we have all seen the classic Twilight Zone Episode The Eye of the Beholder http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Eye_of_the_Beholder). Except there is something very wrong with the Pretty operation – something much worse is unveiled. And even so, the author has crafted the story so carefully that it makes one wonder if in fact a world of Pretties would bring about world peace.

The thought makes me shudder.

The book ends on a great cliffhanger – the perfect entrance for book two!  You’ve done it again Mr. Westerfeld.

I give The Uglies 8 magic wands.

To find out more about Scott Westerfeld click here http://scottwesterfeld.com/blog/

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