Uglies Book Review
Imagine that at sixteen you could have an operation to make yourself beautiful. No more flaws, just perfect features, perfect hair, perfect skin. But what if that operation came at a price? Check out Uglies by Scott Westerfeld.
Author: Scotter Westerfeld
Sixteen. It’s an age of maturity, awesome birthday parties and fancy cars. But for Tally Youngblood, sixteen is the age of beauty. In Tally’s world, your sixteenth birthday is the day the Uglies can leave their dorms in Uglyville behind. They receive an “operation” to transform their faces from imperfect to symmetrical, their hair from natural to silky, and their skin from blemished to smooth. At sixteen, they become Pretties.
Most kids can’t wait for the operation. They can party and live carefree with all the other Pretties. But not everyone wants to change their physical appearance, like Tally’s new friend Shay. While Tally can’t wait to become a Pretty, Shay has other plans. She runs away to a place called the [kwlink12810]Smoke[/kwlink], a small community of rebels who are trying to restore the old way of life. In the Smoke there are no Uglies and Pretties. Only regular people who work hard and appreciate natural beauty.
Shay tries to convince Tally to run away with her, but Tally refuses. She wants to become Pretty. But on her sixteenth birthday, she isn’t given the operation. Instead, a secret organization called the Specials interrogate Tally about Shay’s disappearance. They want to protect their new superficial civilization from returning to the old ways of life. And they need Tally’s help. The Specials refuse to give her the operation until she leads them to the Smoke.
When Tally finds the rebel camp, she learns that there is more to the operation than meets the eye. Maybe she doesn’t want to undergo reconstructive surgery after all. Sure, she’d love to be beautiful, but at what price?
The Bottom Line
Uglies is a new take on science fiction, set in the distant future. The book exaggerates today’s plastic surgery trends, making it a mandatory part of life. This clever, intriguing and intense story makes you appreciate your flaws and unique traits. Who would want to be perfect when you could love being yourself?