Crossed (Matched #2) by Ally Condie

CrossedSummary: In book two of this young adult romantic dystopian novel, Cassia is looking for Ky, who has been shipped off to the outer provinces as a decoy in the secret war of rebellion.

This trilogy by Ally Condie is a unique take on the dystopian novel.  It has all of the traditional elements: a society that has re-built itself out of the ashes of our current world, a tension between the totalitarian elements that want to prevent another societal meltdown through social engineering and those that rebel against the power of the society, and a utopian undercurrent that believes that if only we can do it a bit better.

But in Condie’s novels much of the action is internal to the characters.  The violence of the Hunger Games is absent.  There is plenty of tension.  But it is a psychological and romantic tension.  Not a tension caused by physical violence and political intrigue.

Crossed opens with Cassia serving far away from the central society.  She is sorting and gaining experience before being permanently placed in her job.  But what she is really doing is looking for a way to get to the Outer Provinces to look for Ky, the boy she loves and the one she unintentionally sent into exile.  Back at home, Xander, the boy she is supposed to marry is progressing in his training to become a medical doctor.  He has a secret, one that Ky knows and that Ky will not tell Cassia, for fear that she might leave him for Xander.

Cassia wants to leave the Society and join the Rising and fight against the injustice.  Ky fears the Rising as much as the Society because he has been exposed to both.

I enjoyed this book almost as much as Matched (the first book).  But the newness of the story line faded.  There were several improbable jumps that moved the story line along, but of course created the tension that keep the book moving.

This book felt a little more teen romance than the last one.  That seems ironic since this one has a lot more action, wandering through the wilderness, hiding from the Society and whoever else is looking for them.  But it is the decisions and the way the story moves along.  The pride of both Cassia and Ky prevent them from sharing important things and both end up lying to one another in order to protect themselves or the other.

Book three does not come out until June.  So I will have to wait to see how it turns out.

Purchase Links: Kindle Edition, Hardcover, Audiobook

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