Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Review: Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

Pretties by Scott Westerfeld
US Pub. Date: 1 November 2005 (Paperback)
UK Pub. Date: 3 July 2006 (Paperback)
384 pages (US version)
Genre: Young Adult Post-Apocalyptic Dystopian

Pretties seemed to follow much the same formula as Uglies, but perhaps with less action. Once again, I didn't find this book life-altering, but I wasn't looking for that. It's a good escapist book, and it reads very quickly. I liked the descriptions of people and locations, as it made things easy to imagine. The same theme from Uglies seemed to run through Pretties, but possibly with a stronger focus on choice and personal strength/will. I appreciated how Westerfeld didn't just make all the teens compliant with the powers that be. Instead, the characters seem real, fighting for independence while still trying to figure out who they are and what they are made of.

On the downside, I didn't feel extremely fulfilled by the ending, but I had the same feeling with Uglies, and it's probably (hopefully) due to my not having finished the trilogy yet. I found the characters more annoying in this book than in Uglies, but I think that might have been part of the author's intent. Overall, however, I enjoyed reading the book. I wasn't reading from a literary critic standpoint or with the idea that I was finding the next great piece of literature. If that's something you are seeking, I probably wouldn't expect you to like these books in general. It is a great way to escape to the future with a group of teens who have some decent adventures and grow (albeit, it the same way they grew in Uglies) from the beginning to the end.