Book: Specials by Scott Westerfeld

Publishing Info: Published by Simon Pulse; 384 pages in hardcover

Goodreads Summary: “Special Circumstances”:

The words have sent chills down Tally’s spine since her days as a repellent, rebellious ugly. Back then Specials were a sinister rumor — frighteningly beautiful, dangerously strong, breathtakingly fast. Ordinary pretties might live their whole lives without meeting a Special. But Tally’s never been ordinary.

And now she’s been turned into one of them: a superamped fighting machine, engineered to keep the uglies down and the pretties stupid.

The strength, the speed, and the clarity and focus of her thinking feel better than anything Tally can remember. Most of the time. One tiny corner of her heart still remembers something more.

Still, it’s easy to tune that out — until Tally’s offered a chance to stamp out the rebels of the New Smoke permanently. It all comes down to one last choice: listen to that tiny, faint heartbeat, or carry out the mission she’s programmed to complete. Either way, Tally’s world will never be the same.

Specials is the 3rd book in the Uglies series.  I think this one is my favorite one in the entire series.  It’s been so interesting to see how Tally has changed during the series, going from an Ugly to a Pretty to a Special.

While physical beauty is an important throughout the series, and especially important in the first two books, it wasn’t so important in this one.  The power of choices and the individual was pretty important- Tally always seems to overcome whatever surgery is performed on her.  And while beauty is skin deep is an important message, our choices andwhether we can overcome things is just as important.

It got me thinking about how we’re conditioned (or socialized) to act and behave.  And that there is a price to freedom, whether we realize it or not.  And I like the idea that we need to take care of the environment instead of destroying it.  It was there, but very subtle.  Westerfeld does a great job of making you think.

It was well-written, and I’m impressed with how relevant the themes are.  It gets a 5 out of 5.

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