★ ★ ★ ★ ★
My opinion in three sentences:
Condie really got it right with this installment – it was the perfect ending for this trilogy, and broached aspects never really investigated in dystopian novels. Revolution wasn’t portrayed as a perfect solution to a troubled society, and there was a fascinating discussion on right and wrong, as well as issues encountered along the way. Plus, some of the side characters really came into themselves (I, for one, discovered a new-found love for Xander), and it felt like a refreshing, worthwhile continuation.
(Without spoiling anything) the best bit:
Condie didn’t do what every other dystopian trilogy I’ve read did, and that made it not only refreshing but also a lot more honest. Reached offered more of an analytical look at revolutions and really addressed their fallibility and weaknesses – even the best laid plans, as the saying goes… So, yes, whilst lots of people have been annoyed that it focused very little on the actual meaty action of the uprising, I enjoyed Condie’s alternative take that, for me, offered a more accurate portrayal of the instability, confusion and troubling times that follow the upheaval of a society.
A warning for the book:
It has all the feels. No, really. Condie casts some strange magic in her writing that leads to a lot of emotions throughout the book, even directed towards characters you’ve never liked/noticed/met in the prequels. It just adds to make one of the most perfect-fitting endings for a trilogy. Pay attention, folks, this is how it’s done (even if you’ve erred or gone down hill in book 3 – Condie proves you can pick it all up to finish on a high!)
Recommended for fans of:
- Railhead by Philip Reeve
- Delirium by Lauren Oliver
- Shadow by Colleen Oakes