Reached (#3 in the Matched Trilogy) by Ally Condie
I don’t like writing negative reviews since I know people will inevitably write them about my books if/when I publish them someday. I wish I could say I loved this book. I really enjoyed Matched, and Crossed was a lot of fun. Unfortunately Reached had several big problems that ruined the finale of this series for me.
First off, Crossed is unnecessarily long. Condie drags out the story over 500 pages. I read whole chapters where nothing happened. The book could have been cut in half without losing anything. It took me well over a month to read it because if I ever put it down, I’d forget I was reading it. I finally finished it trying to cure a bout of insomnia. Not a good sign if I read a book to lull myself to sleep.
Second, I did not like Xander. He could have died ten pages in (or in Crossed for that matter), and I wouldn’t have minded. That may have more to do with my personality than Condie’s writing, but for me any semblance of a legitimate love triangle fell apart in book two.
Third, Crossed was confusing. I’m still trying to figure out what actually happened. I spent months anticipating a finale with a big exciting battle for control, but what I got was a tiny whimper and a bunch of people in comas. Usually I can give you a detailed outline of the plot of a novel complete with character arcs. My memories of Crossed consist of Xander trying to help people in a makeshift hospital, Ky flying around a lot with What’s-Her-Name, and Cassia murmuring poetry under her breath. Oh, and there was the Pilot. And Ky got sick toward the end. I still don’t know who won, who was actually fighting who, and why anyone cared!
Last, and closely related to the confusion issue, was a lack of resolution. The series is over, and the characters have made their relationship choices. That’s fine and dandy for them, but absolutely nothing else was resolved. I want to know who won! I want to know what happened to the Society and the Rising and the big election! But at the same I didn’t really care because this book was such a trek to get through.
I really hate writing a negative review. Matched was so good, and I am disappointed that the trilogy ended with Crossed. Condie hooked me with the original dystopian concept and the fun characters. I wish she could have sustained my excitement and interest through the finale.