Title: The Crown
Author: Kiera Cass
Published: May 3, 2016
Series: The Selection
Twenty years have passed since America Singer and Prince Maxon fell in love, and their daughter is the first princess to hold a Selection of her own.
Eadlyn didn’t think she would find a real partner among the Selection’s thirty-five suitors, let alone true love. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and now Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more difficult—and more important—than she ever expected.
The first three books in The Selection series followed followed the story of America Singer, who enters the Selection along with 34 other girls to get a chance to marry Prince Maxon, who will eventually rule Illéa (a dystopified future United States).
The original Selection books were a solid four-star read (check out my review of the conclusion, The One). Although they had their drawbacks — the books are essentially about “The Bachelor” for royalty, they’re not meant to be riveting literature — I found them to be quick and enjoyable to read, and I enjoyed Kiera Cass’ voice throughout the series.
The fourth and fifth books in The Selection series focus on America and Maxon’s daughter, Eadlyn. Eadlyn is their oldest child (albeit only seven minutes older than her twin brother, Ahren), making her heir to the throne.
The Heir and The Crown focus on Eadlyn’s selection.
Despite tradition stating that princesses of Illéa are typically married off to foreign princes, America and Maxon do not want to subject their children to such traditions. But when Eadlyn is nearing adulthood and her approval ratings as future queen are terrible, her parents suggest that going through the Selection might make her more likeable.
So here we have it, folks. Instead of dystopian “The Bachelor,” we’ve got dystopian “The Bachelorette.”
The Crown picked up as Eadlyn’s mother is recovering from a heart attack, and Eadlyn has to take over for her father as regent while he stays with his wife.
She has to juggle advisors and subjects that don’t have faith in her, a bigger workload, and trying to find love all at once. Tough gig.
What I liked:
- Different perspective: The last two books are told from the perspective of the one doing the selecting rather than that of a contestant. This provided exposure into the weight of the choice being made.
- Strong female MC: Eadlyn is a decisive whirlwind, typically unafraid to make her own decisions.
- World-building: This book was built in a universe that had already pulled me in, so it wasn’t even a question as to whether I was going to finish the series.
What I didn’t like:
- Eadlyn was a b*tch: I know she was raised in a palace, but she was such a snob. I was rolling my eyes when she was complaining that there were no flowers or whatever in her bathwater.
- Obvious plot lines: WOW, you mean Marid wasn’t really a nice guy? There are more of these, but I don’t want to spoil the book for anyone reading. So suffice it to say that this was a theme I struggled with a lot in The Crown (and somewhat in The Heir).
- Stereotyped characters: It was cool that Cass put an gay character into the story, but did his profession have to be so… stereotypical? This kind of played into the obvious plot lines, but he was so stereotypical that I was yawning by the time the reveal came around.
Overall, this was a good read. I can’t say it lived up to the original three books in the series, but it was still enjoyable overall. I give 3/5 stars to The Crown, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who loved The Selection series — even if it’s just to fulfill your burning desire to know what comes after happily ever after.