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Uglies is a book series by Scott Westerfeld for young adults. Westerfeld originally intended for Uglies to be a trilogy. However, after publishing the series’ first three novels, UgliesPrettiesand Specialshe ultimately wrote an additional fourth book, Extras.

This fourth book is dedicated “[t]o everyone who wrote to me to reveal the secret definition of the word ‘trilogy’.

The first three novels focus on the exploits of Tally Youngblood. Cable, the head of the mysterious Special Circumstances, cuts Tally a deal: The fourth novel centers on Aya Fuse, a girl struggling to find her place in the tricion world after Tally frees people to think for themselves. The new society is composed of about one hundred small post-scarcityindependently-run city states, spread out across the seven continents, which now have different coastlines because of modern-societies’ global warming.

Tally’s city is located somewhere in southern California, west of the Rocky Mountains. The new society holds three values at its core: Sustainability, Peace, and Equality. The new society promotes these values through the use of The Surge, a type of extreme cosmetic surgery that all citizens undergo at the age of The Surge transforms ordinary humans into paragons of beauty, right down to perfect facial symmetry.

New Pretties are given access to life in New Pretty Town, the innermost part of the city where food, shelter, and entertainment are provided by the government free of charge. Within the post-Surge part of a persons life, everyone’s common sfott inspires peace and equality among the citizens. In an interview with Simon and Schuster’s book newsletter, author Scott Westerfeld talks about the inspiration westdrfeld the series.

Westerfeld thinks that the future will allow people greater control over scottt appearance: That will change what we think of as beautiful, and what beauty means to us. Westerfeld also cites “Liking What You See: A Documentary” by Ted Chiang as an inspiration. Littlies are young, cute, and innocent children. They live with their parents in the suburbs surrounding New Pretty Town, and they will attend elementary school until they turn twelve.

They become uglies during their pre-teen years. When children turn 12 years old they are considered “Ugly”scoft of the burgeoning physical developments experienced westerfepd all preteens and teens.

Uglies are then moved out of the suburbs and live in monitored dorms in Uglyville, where they attend middle and high school. Uglies are encouraged to call each other nicknames based on their personal imperfections e.

Fatty, Skinny, Squint, or Zitsas well as to use software to libo preferences for their facial features.

The former and latter are both methods of building up the Uglies’ anticipation for the Pretty operations they will undergo upon turning Unbeknownst to them, Uglies are also monitored by city authorities, not to restrain their behavior but to see which of them are most capable of ‘pulling tricks’ such as sneaking out at night and into New Pretty Town.

This information is used in the Uglies’ later life westerreld determine whether they are capable of holding jobs that require decisiveness, initiative, and independent thinking, such as being a surgeon, a firefighter or a Special.

When an Ugly turns 16 they undergo a massive Operation that makes them perfect in beauty and health. The Operation westeffeld overhauls a person’s body structure and also includes lesions upon the brain, which makes them compliant and less likely to cause conflict.

The lesions also tend to “dumb them up. New Pretties do not have to work; the only thing they do in New Pretty Town is have fun and maintain an active social life. New Pretties generally join popular cliques, such as the Swarm who only go places massed into large groupsthe Hot Airs whose favored pastime is floating in hot air balloonsand the Crims.


The Crims commonly consist of those who pulled the most tricks when they were Uglies, and are therefore considered to have a ‘criminal’ past, hence the name. Middle Pretties have picked their professions and gone through a second, minor operation that sxott them look older and wiser, but still beautiful. They then move to the suburbs and are allowed to librk and have children, but are encouraged to do so only every 10 years, so as to discourage the formation of sibling bonds, and to ensure that the population of the city doesn’t rise traicoin capacity.

Middle pretties are scot working class. The Middle Pretties’ Littlies children are allowed to edscargar with their parents until they turn They live in assisted living homes and receive life extension surgery that allows them to live into their middle hundreds and two-hundreds.

Uglies are “surveillanced” surveilled by Special Circumstances to see if they have what it takes to become a Special.

Uglies series – Wikipedia

The security system in Pretty Town is “too easy” to hack and trick. It is believed that the Specials were created by Dr. Cable to stop humans from expanding into westeefeld wild or resisting the cities. Specials are described as frighteningly beautiful and as a “cruel pretty” with features like large coal black eyes, sharp cheekbones They undergo a special surgery that gives them the ability to feel vibrations with their hands, enhanced senses, muscles sheathed with self-repairing mono filament, sharp orbital alloy teeth, incredible reflexes, bones made out of aircraft ceramics light as bamboo and hard as diamonds.

They are also very strong. The Surge also called Westerveld Operation is an internationally standardized and performed medical procedure mandated by the new society that plays a central part in the plot of the Uglies series. Rtaicion Surge consists of many steps, taking place over a single twenty-four-hour period, half scottt which is spent in anaesthetic stasis. The Surge is mostly cosmetic, but also involves major surgery being performed on the nervous, immune, and neurological systems.

The point of The Surge itself is to promote and inspire peace among its recipients, with the idea that beauty ultimately trumps all forms of inequality and bigotry – Things like race and orientation don’t matter when everyone is beautiful. The Surge is performed at the age of sixteen on every citizen in the world although some cities perform it at age 18, and is hinted to be performed at 15 in some and is strictly regulated by The International Committee For Morphological Standards “The Pretty Committee”which converges yearly to exchange notes on things such as innovations, anaesthesia techniques, and standard levels of attraction worldwide because of the cities attitude towards codependence, these meetings are mostly just to make sure every city is making their recipients the same kind of pretty, and to not have any one city have more attractive post-ops.

No food or liquid is to be ingested by the patient. It is requested that the patient rests as much as possible beforehand and dressed comfortably for the operation.

It is also asked that the patient does not pack heavily for their transition into New Pretty Town, as they will most likely throw it away afterwards. The patient is collected by a warden of the state and is taken into peaceful custody. They are delivered to the city hospital and are taken to a waiting room while their operation tank is prepared. The patient is put under anaesthetic. At this point, The Surge begins. The first step involves grinding away the patients skin and replacing it with new grafts, which are incapable of scarring, burning, or bruising.

The patient is then transformed from the top down, starting with giving the face perfect symmetrical proportions and new plastic cheekbones. Natural teeth are replaced with teeth made of aircraft ceramic. Eyes are replaced, or at least altered, to give added shine, colour and depth. After this, the patients nervous system is fine tuned for better reaction times and higher self-awareness.


The skeletal structure is changed for a more attractive body shape and height, and joints are padded for ease.

Bodily organs are improved or replaced, and the immune system of the patient is technologically enhanced. After this, the final step of the invasive surgery is to create small lesions on the upper parts of the brain. These lesions impede creativity, violent behaviour, apathy, dysphoria, adrenaline release, and cause westerfelv new pretties to forget grudges.

These lesions ensure that The Surge works to its full potential of inspiring peace, as the impeded aspects could cause chaos if left unaltered. To allow the body time to recuperate, burn away unwanted fat, deecargar to allow westdrfeld musculature of the patient to be altered to a beneficial state, the patient is put under electrolysis for 8—10 hours. When the patient is taken off electrolysis and wakes up, the surgery is considered complete.

For about two weeks afterwards, the patient experiences extremely sensitive skin, as their new grafts toughen up to withstand pressure. This sensitivity is likened to having extremely bad sunburn. This operation, performed at the median age of sixteen, is only the first of many surgeries.

When a new pretty reaches a certain age 25 or sothey scotr given the surgery that transforms them into middle-pretties. This surgery is entirely cosmetic unless the pretty is entering a job which requires creativity and quick-thinking, in which case, some lesions are removedand can be performed in an afternoon. The second Surge gives the pretty light crows feet and a few grey hairs, which inspire trust and authority.

There is no official third surgery, though a crumbly can undergo multiple life-extension surgeries which allow them to live into their mid two-hundreds comfortably and attractively. The first cure Maddy developed consisted of two pills. In the first pill, the nanos tiny robot machinery widely used throughout the prettytime were to break down the lesions.

The nanos in the second pill were to stop the nanos in the first dwscargar from spreading.

Both pills were to be taken together. Since Zane only took the first pill, his brain was permanently damaged, which ultimately led to his death. The second cure consisted of only one pill needed for the treatment of the lesions.

Maddy made the pills much safer; instead of removing a part of the brain, it stimulated the brain to work around the lesions. The Smokies, in partnership with another city, Diego, mass distributed the pills across the world, causing the “Mind Rain”, which marked the end of the prettytime.

In the second book Tally cures herself by rewiring herself. After she created the pills curing pretty lesions, Maddy created a cure for Specials. Unlike the pills, the Special Cure had to be injected with a needle. This cure didn’t remove the “scary” appearance sharp teeth and fingernailsbut it removed the lesions in the brain, like the pills. After the mind rain, Tally is the only Special in existence from her city without the Special Cure.

All other Specials were either despecialized or have an unknown status. However, it is implied that Tally again rewired her brain so that she can have an incredible body, but still have control over her own thoughts. Tally is the protagonist of the books, first appearing in Uglies as a young, year-old girl, waiting for her 16th birthday so that she can be turned pretty. Throughout the series, Tally undergoes significant changes physically and mentally from Ugly, to Pretty, to Special, different classes of citizen in her city.


Tally is also known as Tally-wa, and Squint, throughout the series. Tally has frizzy hair that’s curly, “squinty” eyes, patchy complexion with a wide forehead, a squashed-in nose and thin lips. Her hraicion is “Squint”.