Author: Scott Westerfeld
Genre: Dystopian* (YA)
Quality Rating: 7
Content Rating: PG
I'm not a huge fan of YA (young adult) for many reasons, but I've heard mention of this book several times in the past year as a must read. At first I didn't really know what it was about - but when I learned the idea came from The Twilight Zone episode where everyone at a certain age undergoes an operation to become beautiful (and vapid) - I decided I had to read it. The Twilight Zone is awesome, and I do love that episode. Uglies is a great read - following a girl named Tally who is "an ugly" who is desperately awaiting her 16th birthday so she can "turn pretty". However, when she meets Shay - a girl who doesn't want to turn pretty - everything changes. She finds her own desire to turn pretty being used against her and then discovers that being pretty is not everything its cracked up to be. This book was an easy read, with an intriguing story line, and believable characters. I recommend it for lovers of science fiction, dystopian novels, The Twlight Zone, and YA novels.
This books gets the low rating of PG. I can't recall any strong language. The violence is minimal, and the only sexual content is a few kisses. Definitely appropriate for younger readers.
*For those of you who don't know - Dystopian is the opposite of Utopian. So a Utopian society is a perfect society. A Dystopian society is a society that often seems perfect but has a dark underside. 1984 is a dystopian novel. Dystopian novels are a subgenre of science fiction.