Reached Ally Condie Audiobook Review

Obviously there will be spoilers for Matched and Crossed so click the links to read reviews of those instead, if you don’t want to be spoiled.

Ahhh! It’s so interesting to be reading and finishing series that have begun and ended within the timespan of my book blogging journey. YOU GUYS! I remember being beyond psyched for Matched by Ally Condie and enjoying it for the most part with a few reservations. THEN! I listened to the audiobook of Crossed and was sort of let down a little bit, but still wanted to finish the series. AND NOW IT IS OVER! And okay, there was a lot that I really liked about the conclusion, Reached and the audiobook, but also certain things that were kind of a total let down. AND OBVIOUSLY you know that you’re in for long winded explanations as to why I am of mixed feelings on Reached.

Reached Ally Condie Book Cover

Okay, so you know how Crossed was the book where we found out about The Rising, the rebellion group that wants to overthrow the Society and their mysterious leader, the pilot? Well, in Reached, we see the Rising’s plot finally play out. Cassia, Xander and Ky are all in different provinces doing different things. Cassia is a sorter in Central, but she also engages in illegal trading with the Archivists. Xander works as a medic and is a government official. He’s also a member of the Rising. And Ky is a pilot for the Rising and is working with Indie. As members of the society are hit with a mysterious plague, the Rising makes their move and takes over. ALSO! Cassia must choose FINALLY between Xander and Ky. Oh, and lots of other things happen within the plot but since the book is like 512 pages, I thought I’d just boil it down to the main things.

Probably my favorite thing about the whole trilogy was Cassia’s growth. From Matched to Reached, where she starts off as a girl who is pumped up for her matching ceremony banquet, to a woman who runs an underground gallery where people are actually creating their own works rather than relying on the 100. I just thought it was so cool to see her really come into her own. Plus, she really struggles to help find the cure for the plague — including trying to recover a memory erased by the red pill. I loved that. I loved seeing her sort through her feelings, FINALLY for Xander and Ky instead of keeping both on the line. I loved that Cassia just did not give up when all of the odds were against her — thus making her worthy of her main character status.

Of course besides the whole dystopia and down fall of society thing, I think the true driving force behind Reached and the other books is the love triangle. And I totally know that love triangles aren’t cool anymore, but you guys when this series first started triangles were a thing that all the books did. AND I started Matched and Crossed rooting for Ky. THEN I ended up changing my mind and was all whooooo Xander, because he’s a doctor and doctors are pretty useful. Also, because Xander comes across as a solid and steadfast sort of person. I will say that Reached was probably the least swoonworthy for me out of the whole trilogy, and that’s because yes, the decision is made, but we don’t exactly get a lot of PG-13 scenes or anything. Also, there was more focus on the plague than there was making out.

Which brings me to my next point, I am totally all for reading about plagues. Luckily, Reached totally delivers on it’s promise of disease. We get to see the beginnings of the plague, how immunity is developed and then also how the disease mutates, much like in real life. I just bizarrely love that sort of thing and realize that it makes me odd, but I’ve made peace with that. However, I was not entirely satisfied with how they cured it. It just came across as kind of anti-climatic. I remember thinking after listening — all this build up for that?!

Like Crossed, I listened to the audiobook version of Ally Condie’s Reached. I actually liked this one better than Crossed because Xander has a point of view and his narrator has probably the best voice. Kate Simses and Jack Riccobono revive their parts as Cassia and Ky, respectively. Matt Burns narrates Xander’s parts. As I mentioned above, I found myself rooting for Xander during Reached, and that’s due in no small part to the voicing of Ky and Xander. I just found Matt Burns’ voice much more appealing and believable than Ky’s. Don’t get me wrong, Jack Riccobono did an okay job narrating, but when it came down to it, for shallow reasons I just liked Burns’ better, he came across as less angsty. Crossed is produced by Penguin audio and is 13 hours and 15 minutes long. It does kind of drag for a bit and I found myself listening to the radio and spotify a lot more than this. Also I started another audiobook in the middle because I could not focus on Crossed, but I eventually did end up finishing it, obviously. So, take that as you will.

Disclosure: Received for review

Other reviews of Reached by Ally Condie:

The Sweet Bookshelf – “While I did enjoy this story, it definitely isn’t my favorite.

YA Book Queen – “An excellent ending to an incredible trilogy

Anna Reads – “I’m very satisfied with the ending of Reached

Books by Ally Condie:

Matched
Crossed

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Comments

  1. I’m so glad you liked this! I enjoyed the first two, but didn’t have very strong feelings about them. Reached really felt like a good ending to me and I liked all the info about diseases/viruses/cures. But now that you mention it, the cure did seem to come around easily after all that time.

    13 hours is a long audio book, I can understand getting a bit bored with it but I do like that they used 3 different narrators – I am sick of listening to not-so-good narrators trying to do different voices and failing!

    • I think I feel pretty similar, I liked the first two but I wasn’t exactly shipping the characters for these books.
      The diseases and cures were probably the best part, but yeah the cure just seemed so simple to me.

      Well, two of the narrators were very pleasing to my ears, but there was one where I just could not wait for his parts to be over, ya know?

  2. Doctors *are* pretty useful… I haven’t read this one yet, though it’s on my list (probably over the summer, when I have time to catch up). The second one was great but I just haven’t gotten around to picking this one up yet. Not sure I could listen to it for 13 hours, though. That’s dedication!

    • Mary, I liked this for the most part. 13 hours isn’t even that long though for an audiobook, but I just ended up kind of bored and I think it was the story, especially because I can totally handle a 27 hour long non-fiction audiobook, ha ha. I hope you like Reached when you read it.

  3. “THEN I ended up changing my mind and was all whooooo Xander, because he’s a doctor and doctors are pretty useful.” <– Haha. You are very practical.

  4. Ah!! I’ve been staring at this book for a month. In fact, I have to take it back to the library tomorrow. I just haven’t been able to work up the enthusiasm for this monolith as I had for Crossed after having loved Matched so much. Your reaction makes me think that yes, I want to read it, but also no, I don’t have to pound down any doors to read it right this second. I want to know how the story ends, I want to know who she chooses (I’d love to read JUST ONE book where it’s not the expected choice), and of course I’m all for reading about the plague.

    • I don’t think it’s worth forcing yourself to read. And yeah, I would like to read a book where it’s not the expected choice either, like it’s so boring when there’s a clear winner and we all know who the winner is going to be. I’d rather read a book where that’s shaken up a bit. I’d just return the book and then wait until you truly feel motivated to put in the time to read.

  5. all your hesitations here? they’re precisely why this is still sitting on my kindle, unread. i was SO, so letdown after reading Crossed. i just feel so .. eh. like i was beside myself excited about Matched and then WHAM – air sucked out of me lifeless after Crossed. now i’m somewhere in between, straddling hesitation and excitement to see who she picks.

    • Yeah, Crossed was kind of boring. I was hoping there would just be MORE but, it was very meh for me. What I would probably do because I doubt you are a plague/disease fan like I am is just look up spoilers to see who she picks so you don’t have to invest the 512 pages of time.

      • I’m just replying to Magan’s comment here because I pretty much could have copied and pasted it as my reply. I’m seriously feeling the same way. Really liked Matched but was so letdown by Crossed. I got this on my Kindle for Christmas because I know that I want to read it and finish this series but I just can’t seem to muster up the energy to actually read it. I also didn’t realize it was 512 pages because it’s on my Kindle and OMG can you feel lethargic about a book before you’ve even started reading it? Because that’s where I am right now. (Well I’m actually on my couch but my feelings are in meh-land about this book).

  6. Too bad about the draggy parts int he audio, I find those are usually inevitable, if you’re reading you can speed through but in audio you can’t so they are bound to be more noticeable.

    Still I’m glad that Cassia turned into such a kick-butt character, I found her a little bland in Matched, sometimes.

    Great review.

    • I think though with a dragging book — it’s going to drag regardless of whether you’re listening to the audio or the print version. I think that with audiobooks if the narrator is good, they can make the dragging stuff interesting, although there’s no accounting for source material.

      Yeah, Cassia gets more interesting as a character in Reached because she does things independently.

      Thank you!

  7. I can’t say that I’m dying to read this one any time soon. Alas. I wasn’t a huge fan of either previous book, so I’m going to have to really work up the energy to read Reached, especially since it’s so huge. Possibly–and this is incredibly shallow of me–the only thing that I’d be excited about is who Cassia chooses. I don’t normally focus on that angle of the books I read, but that’s just about the only thing in this series that ever captured my attention, and even that was brief. Eek! Great review, though, April! :-)

    • Hahahaha, yeah it definitely was not the best book I’ve read. I thought the whole society thing was interesting at first, but it just seemed like the downfall of the Society was not all that fleshed out. ALSO! It’s totally not that shallow to be pumped over finding out who Cassia chooses, I mean that’s kind of how they marketed the first book — based on the romance.

      Thanks for the compliment!

  8. I’m a bit nervous about this book; I was really excited about Matched but Crossed kind of let me down and I’m not sure how I’ll react to Reached. I wish I had the audio! I’m really excited because my car’s CD player has been down for the count since October (gah) but I have an appointment for Wednesday this week to have a new one installed. I’m going to take lesson out of your book – I’m hoping to listen to a disc a day!

    • It is really cool to have a CD player in the car that works. I know I usually listen to a lot just on my driving time alone. Yeah, Crossed was alright but nowhere near as good as matched, sigh. I hope you end up liking Reached though.

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