1. 300 years into the future, plastic surgery operations was a norm.
2. Once you turn 16 years old, you receive a “pretty” operation. It transforms you into a ‘normal’ citizen.
3. After the operation, you basically start a new life.
4. People who lived before this catastrophe are called “Rusties.”
5. Tally is 15.
6. Her best friend, Peris, has already had the operation and, Tally decides to sneaks across the river to New Pretty Town.
7. On her way, she meets Shay, another Ugly.
8. They become friends and Tally is taught how to ride a hoverboard from Shay.
9. Shay then brings up rebelling against the operation.
10. Tally, at first ignores her comment, but takes it seriously when Shay runs away.
11. On the day of Tally’s operation, she is taken to Special Circumstances.
12. She meets Dr. Cable, a woman who is described as “a cruel pretty”, is the head of Special Circumstances.
13. She gives Tally a choice to either help locate Shay and the Smoke, or never become a pretty.
14. Tally chooses and ends up cooperating with Dr. Cable.
15. Dr. Cable provides her with the materials/supplies needed for her to survive in the wild.
16. Tally is also given a heart locket that contains a tracker to track her moves.
17. The heart notifies Special Circumstances where Tally’s exact location is.
18. Tally finds Shay and David, including other runaways just like them.
19. Tally is reluctant based on her decisions, which assures David that he loves her.
20. David takes her to meet his parents, Maddy and Az, who are the original runaways from the city.
21. Tally and David explain how the operations really work and is.
22. It also causes lesions in the brain to make the people placid, or “pretty-minded.” Horrified, Tally decides to throw the locket away burning I the fire and keep the secret of the runaways.
23. However, the flames’ heat causes the tracker to activate, giving away the Smoke’s location.
24. The next day, Special Circumstances arrives at the camp and Tally tries to escape.
25. She wasn’t successful and gets caught, taken to a rabbit pen, where other caught Smokies are kept as well.
26. Eye scans are taken from the Smokies, identifying from which city they fled.
27. Tally is then taken to Dr. Cable, who explains how they found the Smoke. Dr. Cable thinks Tally activated the pendant on purpose.
28. After being ordered to give the pendant, Tally manages to escape on a hoverboard.
29. After a chase, she hides in a cave where tracking her heat signature doesn’t work.
30. There she finds David, hiding too, and they begin to work out a rescue plan.
31. Tally and David go back to his house, where they find out that Special Circumstances took Maddy and Az.
32. David leads Tally to a secret place where survival equipment is and the found everything they need, and load them onto the four hoverboards stashed there.
33. As Tally and David travel back to the city, they fall in love. Arriving at the Special Circumstances place, they find out that Shay has already been turned into a Pretty.
34. After meeting Dr. Cable, David knocks her out and takes her device.
35. Tally and David free all the Smokies that were captured and help in the complex. Maddy then tells David that Az is dead.
36. Once everyone is safe, Maddy begins working on a cure.
37. Since Tally feels responsible, she decides to become a Pretty and take the cure as a “willing subject.”
38. While David with Az’s death, Maddy suggests that Tally should go back with Shay before her mind changes, just in case.
39. When she gets there, Tally announces to a Middle Pretty, “I’m Tally Youngblood. Make me pretty.”
Heart Shaped Pendant
The heart shaped pendant is a tracker and which Tally was supposed to activate as soon as she got to the Smoke. This pendant is not just a symbol of Tally’s treachery, but also a symbol of her internal struggle.
White Tiger Orchids
The white tiger orchids symbolizes an excessive good that has turned evil because there is too much of it. The orchids can be compared to the Pretties.
Hoverboards are a symbol of maturity, mostly for Tally.
Scarred hands symbolize friendship, mostly for Tally. The scar itself was created when Peris and she cut their palms and swore to be best friends forever.
Power of Appearance
It is demonstrated that prettiness and ugliness are both relative terms. When Tally was an ugly, she waited for the surgery. However, when she learned that things are not the way they appear to be, she quickly coiled away. The ugly truth under all that prettiness is that undergoing the surgery would mean having brain lesions and part of her former identity erased; most Pretties are gorgeous but have flaws such as vainness. Also, in Tally’s society, appearances are emphasized. As Uglies, they are encouraged to be nicknamed by their imperfections. By comparison, in a world with perfect faces, average faces would be considered ugly. But among Pretties, because there is no comparison, they are constantly unsatisfied and often change their looks on a weekly basis by surgery. It thus implied that in a world where perfection is so easily attainable, people would still soon be unsatisfied and seek for more.