Book two of Condie’s Matched trilogy finds Cassia and Ky in separate work camps in the Outer Provinces, trying to escape and find their way back to one another. Cassia hopes to join the Rising, a group of rebels determined to take down the Society. Ky is haunted by memories of growing up in the Outer Provinces. His father wanted to rebel, too, but when both Ky’s parents and the rest of their community were killed by a Society attack, the Rising did not help. Now, Ky doesn’t trust the rebels, and his only wish is to reunite with Cassia. But Ky has secrets, and when Cassia learns the truth, will she still love him?
I really enjoyed Matched but found that this book felt very much like the second the book of a trilogy in that there was a lot of filler. The book alternates between Cassia’s and Ky’s perspectives, and a lot of time is spent describing their separate journeys into the Carving, a group of canyons at the edge of the Society. I think part of my problem is that I don’t like Ky as much as I know I’m supposed to. He always seems to be withholding information from Cassia, which just feels sneaky to me. Plus, I feel sorry for Xander, Cassia’s Match and childhood best friend, who does love Cassia but is nonetheless put aside. Once Cassia and Ky are reunited, the pacing picks up a fair bit as we begin to learn some secrets Ky has been keeping as well as more details of how sinister the Society is. While I struggled to get through the first half of the book, the latter half provided enough suspense that I am still anxious to see how Cassia’s story plays out when the third book, Reached, hits the shelves in November.