Book Review: Crossed by Ally Condie

Crossed by Ally Condie (Matched #2)
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Format: ARC (courtesy of Kathy from Read This Instead)
Genre: Dystopia, Young Adult
Publication Date: 11.1.2011
In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky - taken by the Society to his certain death - only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake.

Cassia's quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander - who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia's heart - change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.

This became such a complex review, that I decided it would be easier to just make lists of what I did and didn't like. I also had to include some spoilers to fully get my point across, but in order to see them, you have to highlight the text between the arrows. 
Example: >>Surprise! This is a spoiler.<<

What I didn't like:
  • I actually really like having different POVs in a story, but I could hardly tell the chapters apart in Crossed. There were many times when I had a hard time telling the difference between Cassia's and Ky's chapters. There wasn't a distinctive voice to each that set them apart in my mind, and if their names hadn't been at the beginning of each chapter, I would have been completely lost.
  • We are dragged around through endless canyons, over plateaus, through rivers, into caves, back through rivers....and yet at the end of the book, the plot had not moved forward. I didn't learn a lot more about Cassia's world than I already knew when I began reading, and I had twice as many questions left unanswered. New discoveries were made, but the story didn't follow through with them. More bad guys were kind-of-sort-of brought into the picture, >>while the old bad guys seemingly disappeared.<<  This is probably the most disappointing part of the entire book. Matched leaves us an aching to know more about the society Cassia lives in; it leaves us with bated breath, wondering how Cassia and Ky can ever be together with such watchful and deceitful people watching their every move. Crossed leaves it at that, and goes on to tell a side story while we wait for the next book, which will hopefully release our anxiety. :(
  • And what the heck was going on between >>Ky and Indie?! Did anyone else pick up on that? It was like she offered to take Cassia's place in his life, and instead of shutting her down like he should have, he just ignored the offer altogether, in a way that left it open to acceptance in the future. and am I mistaken, but did he actually consider it?! I am speechless.<< 
  • Finally, the book ended in a weird place. Although I found the last pages very poetic, I also expected more to happen.

What I liked:
  • Cassia and Ky's thoughts of each other! Their relationship is so great. I just love it. They don't move it along too quickly, and they don't suspend all emotion until they can't take it any longer. They're simply there for each other (even miles apart), they respect each other, and they deeply love each other. >>And if it weren't for that thing I mentioned above--with Ky and Indie--I would think it is pretty close to perfect<<
  • Their determination to be together. This kind of goes along with the above, but I love the courage they both had to always do what they needed to do, so that they could hopefully be together again. <3
  • Being in the outer provinces. First of all, I totally recognized some names of the places mentioned in the story, and it helped give me a mental map of where things were happening, in the book. Also, I liked getting away from the uniformity that was everywhere in Matched. Although I think it really worked for Matched, it was nice to see the characters in different elements.
  • The writing. It is simply beautiful, and definitely my favorite part of the book. The pace is slower than the last book, but with such beautiful writing, I didn't mind.
  • Lastly, I really liked what the differing POVs brought to the story. Despite not finding enough difference in the voices, I learned a few new things about the world they live in, because we got to see the world from Ky's POV...and apparently, not everything is as it seems.

Final thoughts:

Crossed is definitely one of those hit-or-miss books. I think it will appeal to a lot of fans, especially if you really loved Matched and are more interested in Cassia and Ky's story, than anything else. It has beautiful writing and memorable passages. Though it is ultimately a bridge between stories, I recommend that any Matched fan give it a try.

Read this if:
...you believe that love conquers all, you are interested in Cassia and Ky's story above all else, and don't mind a trek through uninhabited land to hear it.

Content Warning
*This section may contain some spoilers about content!*
Highlight between the brackets to reveal the text.
{Some violence, and two swear words.}

Thanks so much to Kathy from Read This Instead, for letting me to be part of this book tour. :)

Other Books in the Series:
Book 1: Matched

Purchase Crossed:
Ally Condie:
Blog  /  Twitter


  1. O you've given me lots to think about. I love this review. I think it's the best one I've read yet to be truthful.

    While I'm sad to hear it takes us on a side story, I'm glad to hear it's a must for fans.

    Let's keep our fingers crossed for the third book.

  2. I agree with you that I found it very difficult to tell the chapters apart, so much so that sometimes I thought I was reading in Cassia's view point when all of a sudden she would say something that didn't sound like herself and then I had to remember I was on Ky's chapter. I didn't really enjoy Matched that much but I read the beginning of this one in the hopes that the story would move faster, instead of moving faster what I got was a very slow story, it was so slow that I had to put it down half way through. This series is certainly not one for me.

    Thanks for the great review. :)

  3. I also found it hard to tell which character I was reading about. I sometimes had to go back and look at the chapter heading to remember whose POV I was in.

    My daugher had an interesting idea, She asked me if I thought the next cover would be red? She said the first one talked alot about green pills and the cover was green. This book talked about the blue pills and the cover was blue, she wondered if the next cover might be red for the red pills. Interesting... what do you think?

  4. Very balanced review. I like it. I can understand the things you didn't like, but I was not really bothered by them (and must have missed the Ky/Indie thing). Got me thinking!

  5. Juju: I'm so glad to hear that! I was so conflicted, but I wanted to get all of my thoughts out there. I'll be watching for your thoughts if/when you read it.

    Alexa: I'm sorry to hear that. :( I totally get it though; some books aren't for everyone, and I've definitely had my fair share of series I didn't like. Thanks for sharing!

    Mindee: That's an awesome idea your daughter had! I was curious so I looked it up, and Ally Condie says in an interview she did, that the cover colors represent the pills. That's so awesome!

    Melissa: Thanks for your comment! I'm glad these things didn't bother you so much. I'm not sure if I was just reading into the Ky/Indie thing or not, but I can't get it out of my head. :(


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