Author: Ally Condie
Read by: Kate Simses and Jack Riccobono
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Length: 8 CDs (unabridged), 10 Hours
Source: Penguin Audio Review Copy (Digital Download)
Crossed is the second novel in Ally Condie’s dystopian young adult trilogy. I listened to and really enjoyed the first novel in the series, Matched, last month, and was eager to learn what happened to my favorite characters, Cassia, Ky, and Zander.
At the end of Matched, Ky, has been taken by the society to fight on the front lines and Cassia vows to find him. Crossed is the journey that Cassia takes to find Ky. After her family has been sent to the outer provinces, Cassia, volunteers for a remote work detail that will get her closer to finding Ky. Cassia also starts to discover information about the elusive rebellion. Ky meanwhile is trying to survive an endless war that makes no sense. The Society tells the young soldiers that they will be able to become citizens after they serve their six months, but in reality, no one makes it that long. The young soldiers have no ammunition for their weapons, and are fired upon by remote airships of the faceless, nameless enemy. Zander only appears once in this novel, but his presence is always felt.
I enjoyed Matched, but I loved Crossed. I thought that this second novel in the series was a much stronger novel. It still involved the love triangle, but it focused more on the action and adventure. Much of the narrative moves along in a road trip format with Cassia and Ky trying to escape from the Society and also find each other. New interesting characters are introduced, but the focus stays on the main characters that we know and love.
I felt that Matched seemed like a young adult version of George Orwell’s 1984, and I felt that Crossed was even more so. There is even a scene where the main characters are interviewed and have to remember not to break under their interrogation. The nameless continuous war in Crossed is similar to the same type of war in 1984, although in Crossed we get firsthand experience at that war. As in 1984, the characters that do not accept society and conform to their standards find themselves on the outside.
The Matched audiobook was read only by Kate Simses as the voice of Cassia, the teenaged narrator. I thought she did a fantastic job and did indeed sound like a teenage girl with angst. She continued on as Cassia in Crossed, but Jack Riccobono was added on as the voice of Ky who narrates pretty much every other chapter in Crossed. I really enjoyed the addition and thought he did a great job. I really liked the dual narration. This book had a lot of action and it made it the type of book I couldn’t wait to listen to again. This is the second book I’ve listened to as a digital download on my Droid phone rather than as a CD set. I must admit, I really like this format. I can carry my phone everywhere and listen to it easily without having to find a CD player and remember what CD and track.
I really liked the ambiguous ending and the secret that we learned about Zander. For those that have already read the novel, who do you think Cassia is going to meet at the end? I think she is on her way to meet Zander. I really enjoyed how the novel focused on Cassia and Ky’s journey to find each other, but also their own journey of self-discovery. Cassia and Ky have very different outlooks and goals in life. Will their love keep them together, or will Cassia discover that her goals line up more with Zander?
Overall, I really enjoyed Crossed and I can’t wait for the third novel to come out. November 2012 better get here fast! If you also enjoy young adult dystopian novels, or if you don’t know what that means, but you love a good action adventure with a love triangle, Crossed is for you!
Crossed is my first audiobooks this year for the 2012 Audiobook Challenge.