|(Cover from author's website)|
Author: Kiera Cass
Genre: Dystopian Romance
Published: HarperCollins Teen 2013
Medium Read In: Kindle
Rating (Scaled 1-10): 4.5
Why I'm Reading It: I decently liked the novella's predecessor, The Selection, and Maxon was one of my favorite characters. This novella explores Maxon's point of view a little bit, and so it seemed like a decent thing to read. You can read my review of the first book in there series here.
Summary: Pretty much the events pre- The Selection and the first few chapters, told in Prince Maxon's POV. It involves Maxon and a previous love interest, and expands on his relationship with his father.
Review: I was hoping for something a bit more… full, I guess. This novella suggested, as per its description, that it would involve a love interest for Maxon, and it was sort of suggested (through the point of having a novella for Maxon) that it would be different and deepen Maxon's character. Iy definitely showed a new side of Maxon, however the intrigue of a former love fell flat as it was not the main focus of the novella.
With the YA genre, I've noticed that everything is advertised as a romance of some kind. This is truly a shame. This was a great chance for the author to expand on Maxon's character and humanity, however she wrote, instead, with the same Maxon we knew from The Selection. The novella presented a lot of insight into his dad and his relationship. However, by advertising The Prince as a romance, the novella lost a lot. Its main theme was not romance, and so it really, really lost me.
If my hopes had not been raised to hear more about Maxon's former girl, I probably would have given The Prince a shaky 6. I read it after The Elite, so a lot of what it hinted at didn't surprise me. However like the other two, The Prince is a nice, fluffy read when you need to do something for an hour. The new character, Princess Daphne, was a very flat character, and didn't come across very well. In the time we see her, she comes off as a love sick floozy without any backbone. Maxon and her had zero chemistry, and the entire romance angle was a flop.
The best part of the novella was seeing Maxon and his father interact. The tensions were a bit thick between the two, and the dynamic did come across well on paper, unlike the rest of the book.
If you like The Selection, this is a nice complimentary read for the series. However if you're only moderately interested in the series- such as is the case for many people- then the novella is easy to pass up. For those with interest, you can purchase the e-book version on Amazon.
I feel like now is a decent time for me to address my feelings towards this series. I don't find America to be a particularly good character. She doesn't come across well on the page, she's mopey, and overall I just don't like her. I don't find myself rooting for her and her plight. I dislike her more than I dislike Bella Swan. The series is, of course, a straight up romance with mild dystopian elements. But the author doesn't even try to elaborate too well on them, and it bothers me so much.
Yet, somehow I cannot stop myself from wanting to read them. I've even re-read The Selection! I don't understand why, but something about this series is addictive. I'm not quite sure why, but I want to read these books, which highly distresses me. Complex emotions aside, enjoy the words!