In a world hundreds of years more advanced than our own, Tally Youngblood is finally about to be turned pretty--what happens to all sixteen year-olds on their birthday. An operation will turn her from a normal "ugly" into a perfect, beautiful, and stronger being and she will finally get to move over the river into New Pretty Town where it's nothing but carefree fun 24/7.
But a few weeks before her birthday, Tally meets Shay. Her new friend has decided she doesn't want the operation and therefore she runs away before she is made pretty. The "special" pretty authorities step in and send Tally on a mission to find her delinquent friend. Should Tally refuse to cooperate, she will remain an ugly forever.
Torn between betraying a friend or giving up her long-awaited operation, Tally's choice ultimately reveals secrets about the Pretties that will change Tally's way of thinking--and her life--forever.
I had heard such great things about this book but for whatever reason, I was always skeptical to read it. Now I can't believe I passed by it so many times and never picked it up. It immediately sucked me in--a mere 15pg. into the book and I was already hooked--intrigued by the mentioning of things like the "toothbrush pill," talking bridges that kept out intruders, voice-automated elevators and interface rings. This was my first science fiction/dystopia genre book and I loved thinking about what our world could be hundreds of years from now.
I will admit that in the beginning of the book I was clueless as to what was going on. Talk of interface rings and other ridiculously high-tech inventions had me baffled and feeling lost. Luckily everything ended up being explained pretty quickly or was easy enough to decipher even with little info given.
Tally's journey is filled with action and with the outcome of her choices comes plenty of suspense. Both the characters and the settings in Uglies were described quite vividly--I could see pretty much everything in my head while reading, which is important to me in any book. Westerfeld's writing is put together nicely and I can't find anything negative to say about it!
Overall I was very, very unexpectedly pleased with this novel. It ended up being the perfect book for me to start with in it's genre because it leaves me wanting to read more dystopic (is that even a word?)-type books. I will definitely read it's sequel, Pretties, as well as others in the science fiction area.
I definitely recommend Uglies, even if it isn't your type of read. I was skeptical at first and I loved it. You won't be disappointed!