Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

January 21st, 2009 by Debbie's World of Books


I give this one 4 out of 5 stars.

Description: Tally is about to turn sixteen and cannot wait because this means she will be turning into a Pretty.  In this new world turning sixteen means being changed from an “ugly” into a “pretty” which allows you into a world of partying in paradise.  As she approaches her birthday she meets Shay, another ugly who is not sure she wants to be turned into a pretty.  Shay runs away to a camp of those who eschew the life of the pretties.  Tally has to make a difficult choice of going after Shay or staying in the world she knows and is comfortable in.  Will she attain her dream of becoming a pretty or does she find that there are other more important things in life.

I thought this was a great concept especially since we live in a world where people are sucking fat out of all parts of their body, reshaping their noses, getting breast implants, etc.  Whose to say we will not end up in a world where everyone is beautiful.  It is actually a kind of scary thought.  I did find it funny that at one point some of the uglies see pictures of people from our time like the super skinny models and find them ugly because they look like they are starving and that was what we found beautiful.

Shay and Tally are both characters.  They almost seem to be two halves of one person.  Shay is the more impulsive, bold half where Tally is the more hesitant side that likes to conform to what people expect of her.  It will be nice to see if they can help each other grow the other half of their personality.  I am excited to see what happens in the next book to see what becomes of the uglies that do not want to become pretties and where David and Tally’s relationship go.

I think this is a great YA book since it’s pointing out that looking like everyone else is not always a good thing.  What some might see as imperfections are not necessarily bad things.  It gives people personality and individualism.

Posted in 4 Star Books, Books, Dystopia, Young Adult

18 Responses

  1. msmazzola

    Funny, I am reading this series now as well. I am halfway through Pretties, which I am not liking as much. I liked how you look at Shay and Tally as two halves of a whole… interesting. My review is here:


  2. J. Kaye

    I might have said this already, but I’d planned to start this series for the Scott Westerfeld reading challenge and changed my mind when I saw PEEPS. I want to read that one first!

  3. Katie

    I just ordered this book! Excited to read it!

  4. dsuzuki

    Laura, I just saw your comment about it would be good to have Pretties on hand. I was just debating last night if I should buy Pretties on my Kindle so I could start it right away. LOL. Only my huge TBR pile kept me from buying it.

    J. Kaye, I never heard of Peeps. I’ll have to check it out too.

    Katie, I hope you like it!

  5. rikkiscraps

    Sounds interesting. I have heard of the uglies but never looked into it. I’m not into YA, but this seems worth to have a closer look.

  6. dsuzuki

    I’ve been on a total YA kick. I love a lot of YA books and heard a lot about this one. I only picked it up because it was on sale but I’m glad I did.

  7. Katie

    just finished this and LOVED IT! Can’t wait to start the next one!

  8. dsuzuki

    Glad you enjoyed it! I’m still waiting for the 3rd book to come in at the library.

  9. Alli

    I saw this book at the store yesterday. Sounds better than I thought. Maybe my next YA will be this one.

  10. dsuzuki

    Alli-it’s an excellent series. I would definitely pick it up.

  11. Jenn M.

    I bought all three of the books in the series last month for $2 each!!! I’m looking forward to reading them. I’ve seen so many good reviews ofUglies. Glad you enjoyed it.

  12. Tashiana

    I bought all of these books! I love love LOVED the first one but the series went downhill from there :(

  13. Raelena

    Originally I had no interest in reading this but it sounds like it has a great message so I think I will give it a try and check it out at my library for now

  14. Wrighty

    I’ve been hearing about this series for along time and have meant to read it. Hasn’t happened yet! It’s nice to see another good review so I’ll be sure to get to them now.

  15. dsuzuki

    Jenn-wow, what a great deal!
    Tashiana-I agree the first one was the best. “bubbly” and “icy” started to get on my nerves in the other ones. I thought Extras was pretty good.

    Raelena and Wrighty-It was a really interesting story concept. I think they are definitely worth a read.

  16. Briana

    I totally loved this series. It is definitely one of my favorites. I hope you enjoy the others.

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