Release Date: October 13, 2015
Note: This book is a collection of short stories that is written as a companion to The Selection Series. It is the perfect book to pick up after you have read The Selection, The Elite, and The One when you are still wanting more from these lovable characters.
The first novella, The Queen, takes us back to the time of King Clarkson’s own Selection and shows how Amberly was chosen. Originating from a lowly caste number, Amberly’s ascension to the throne of Illea is reminiscent of America’s. They are both down to earth, kind, beautiful women. But Amberly is much more soft-spoken and gentle than her feisty daughter-in-law.
The Prince, second of the novellas, was my favorite. The story picks up right before his Selection is about to take place. This time, we see everything through his eyes, and I might even prefer this perspective to America’s. Even though I knew the story from beginning to end, I wanted to know everything that happened from Maxon’s point of view. Note to Kiera Cass: PLEASE finish writing the entirety of The Selection Series from Maxon’s experience!
It is only right that Aspen, the other love interest, should get his own novella, too. In The Guard, Aspen shows us a bit of his view of life at the palace. He knows he will always care about America, but as he sees her feelings for Maxon grow, he begins to let her go. Only when he has let her go does he begin to develop new feelings for Lucy, her maid. Though we already know that they fall in love, it is fun to watch it happen.
And finally, The Favorite, is about America’s beautiful bestie, Marlee. During the Selection, Marlee and America bonded fast, and it was she who was the people’s favorite. And when Marlee is publicly punished, America is heartbroken and blames Maxon. But as we see clearly in this novella, Maxon is indeed being merciful to Marlee and Carter, the guard she loves. Not only does he save their lives, but he secretly gives them jobs at the palace after they have become 8’s, the very lowest in society. He also arranges for them to get married in private. All because of his love for America.
This book is a fun compilation of stories that gives us more depth and color to characters we though we already knew pretty well. It even includes scenes, rather than short stories, about Celeste, Lucy, and even Maxon and America after 2 years of marriage (and it’s adorable). If you enjoyed the rest of The Selection Series, you won’t be disappointed in Happily Ever After.
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