|“||Kriss was my toughest competition, but she was also the closest friend I had here.||”|
— America Singer on Kriss
Kriss Ambers was a supporting character in The Selection Series. She was a Three chosen for the Selection. She was one of the Six Elites as one of the top two and also a Northern rebel. She later married Elliot Piaria.
Kriss lived in Columbia prior to the Selection. At one point, she really wanted siblings and she would beg her parents but they refused.
At the beginning of The Selection, Kriss was said to be seated across from America Singer in the Dining Hall (and most likely adjacent from Tiny Lee and Ashley Brouillette.) Her room in the Palace was across the hall from Janelle Stanton.
In the beginning of Prince Maxon's Selection, Kriss was observed to be "twirling her fork menacingly."
Maxon was surprised by her kindness and sweet nature after she forgot to curtsy and continued to ask him questions instead of allowing him to ask her questions. When Maxon made the first wave of eliminations, cutting eight girls from the Selection, Kriss was the one who clarified to America that they had left.
After America and Maxon went on a date, Kriss was the brave one out of the group of girls and asked about it first, prompting more questions from the girls, such as Zoe Peddler.
Kriss talked to Zoe, Janelle, and Emmica Brass in the Women's Room when the remaining girls became worried over dates. Later Tuesday Keeper interrogated America over her date with Maxon and went over to Kriss, wanting her to talk about "her story again, quite energetically."
During a history lesson with Silvia, Kriss answered a question correctly.
Janelle cried when she returned to Kriss after Janelle went on her hunting date with Maxon. Kriss tried to console her, including hugging her. Janelle did not tell anyone why she was eliminated; saying that "she couldn't" to Kriss. Janelle warned Kriss to be careful of what she said before going away and slammed her door. Kriss told the other Selected Girls her story about Janelle three times. The girls went from this subject into starting an argument where Kriss defended Maxon against Celeste Newsome.
Before a taping of the Illéa Capital Report, Kriss and Natalie Luca both had gone to check their makeup a final time. When they passed America, America saw that they looked unhappy (but it wasn't always easy to see with Natalie if she was unhappy apparently). Natalie and Kriss talked to America about her outfit, Natalie going as far as to touch one of the sleeves and asking about the material. For the taping of the Illéa Capital Report, Kriss wore a dress that differed slightly from the other girls' who were all wearing blue hues to match America as they thought it had to do with Maxon liking her so much. Kriss, however, wore a blue dress that "was melting into white, like delicate strands of ice were weaving their way to the floor." Slightly accusingly, she said that America looked stunning in her red gown. When America complimented Kriss' gown, Kriss smoothed her hands along it and made a comment.
In the Women's Room, Olivia Witts told the girls that Maxon had kissed her on the Palace rooftop. Kriss speculated that maybe Olivia was doing something correctly in a conversation with America and Tuesday. Tuesday began giving Tiny praise and saying she couldn't be angry with her if she more dates and accidentally made a comment adding, "even if I want the crown myself." Kriss and America noticed the comment but didn't say anything. At the end of the conversation, Kriss mentioned that she would want the support of the other girls if she won.
It was revealed later that Kriss was one of a magazine's favorite choices for the best formal photos that the Selected Girls had taken with Maxon. She was a favorite along with Tallulah Bell, Bariel Pratt, and America Singer. Marlee Tames was in first place.
Kriss is the only other Selection girl able to have her birthday at the Palace where a lavish party was held for her. The Dining Hall was decorated for the occasion with vases on the walls, arrangements of white and yellow flowers, and like bouquets in bowls scattered about. Much of the room was decorated with garlands, including the windows. The tables around the room had linens and confetti shimmer on them. Even the chairs were decorated with bows on the backs of the seats. She had a large cake in coordinating colors and "a string quartet" was to play. There was a table with some gifts and a photographer was present. The Selected Girls were in little groups enjoying themselves. Kriss was dressed in a "floor-length gown" that was creamy white and yellow jewels were pinned in her hair in the shape of a crown. making her look "mature, regal, [and] bridal" in America's opinion. Kriss was sweet, going around giving her thanks to her guests even though the Selected Girls did not have an option on attending or not. After America played the violin for Kriss, Celeste became jealous of the attention Kriss was receiving and spilled red punch on Kriss' gown which she claimed was an accident causing Kriss to begin crying and ran out of the room, Maxon following her. While she was upset at first, she got to spend time with Maxon while he helped her to get the drink stain off of her dress.
After the Southern Rebels attacked the Palace, the Selected girls formed a bond with one another. During breakfast, America talked to Kriss about the food as Kriss sat beside Emily Arnold. When Maxon announced how he would pick only six Elite girls instead of ten, Kriss was surprised and upset by the lower number. Kriss was the second girl that Maxon announced was staying and, when he did, America saw Kriss do "a happy, fidgety dance in her chair and looked at the girls around her, expecting us to be happy." Prince Maxon chose her as one of his six Elite girls because he thinks that she is a suitable Elite due to her kindness and that fact that he gets along with her well.
In The Elite, Kriss became particularly close to Prince Maxon after she gave him a card when he was upset, causing America Singer to become jealous over their relationship. Despite this, she and America formed a friendship though America remained envious of her and Maxon.
During the Halloween dance, Kriss coordinated costumes with Natalie as spring and fall.
For their project for Silvia, she hosted an event for the Italians along with America. Their event outshone the one held for the Germans, winning them approval from Silvia.
When the Elite girls had to create a project that could become their future project as Queen should they win, Kriss chose teaching and education right away in which she stated that more education for the lowest Castes would lower poverty.
Maxon later admitted to America that Kriss and Maxon's love was not one sided, however his affections for America were much greater.
Kriss did not like when America showed up in a strapless, red dress because she knew that it was out of character for her. She called her dress "trashy" which was interpreted as jealousy by America.
Her family had a tradition of the couple having their first kiss at the engagement party, though she and Maxon shared their first kiss together after she refused to wait any longer.
It was later discovered by America that Kriss had entered the Selection with the intentions of the rebels' plans though after he fought with America, Kriss grew closer to Maxon and fell in love with him.
Kriss was one of the final two Maxon selected and initially he told America he would marry her. However, Maxon and Kriss saw America close to Aspen in the hallway. Maxon realized that he was correct in his suspicion that America had been seeing Aspen and changed his mind into marrying Kriss out of anger and hurt.
During the engagement announcement, the Southern Rebels attacked. Kriss hid under a table crying and covered her ears. Aspen had to slap her to force her to focus and left to safety with him.
Kriss attended America and Maxon's wedding where America observed that Kriss seemed sad as she walked down the aisle.
Happily Ever After
Following her loss in the Selection, Kriss returned to Columbia to start over. She left the palace feeling upset about coming in second but the impact didn’t fully hit her until Maxon and America’s wedding. She kept a brave face for the whole day, posing for pictures and dancing with guests, but she returned home deeply depressed.
For more than a month, Kriss stayed inside analyzing her steps and trying to figure out what she could have done differently. She had regrets over giving away her first kiss and couldn’t stop thinking she was truly meant to be queen. She only rejoined society at her parents’ insistence, working alongside her father at the local university as an assistant in the Communications Department.
Initially she hated her position. People came up to her frequently asking to get a picture with “that girl from the Selection”, completely unaware of how much that label stung. Unable to handle being in public, she took multiple sick days early on. More often than not, Kriss would go to the library, doing her work in the most isolated parts of the building. She feared this would be her whole life and she wasn’t sure she would ever again be seen as someone other than the girl Maxon almost picked.
About six months after she began working at the university, a welcome home party was thrown for a professor who’d spent more than a year collecting plant samples in the jungles of Honduragua. Professor Elliot Piaria, an enthusiastic botanist, was praised for his drive and skill, especially at such a young age. Kriss hadn’t wanted to go to the party but was fine after she saw she wasn’t anything close to the center of attention that day. She was pleased to meet the professor, particularly when they were introduced and his first question was “What do you teach?” Having been away from nearly any source of technology for his journey's entire duration, Elliot had no knowledge of the Selection and Kriss’s naturally mature demeanor didn’t give away that she was seven years his junior.
The two crossed paths frequently and Elliot continually asked Kriss why she wasn’t teaching, convinced her intellect was better suited for a classroom than a cubicle. She lit up under his attention, taking it more to heart than he could ever have guessed.
Elliot was attracted to Kriss and she liked that he was one of the few people who saw her as herself and not a former Selection candidate. She grew more and more confident, returning to her cheerful self. They began dating shortly after Kriss got a position teaching math, a placement she wasn’t thrilled about except for the fact she was teaching.
She was hesitant to let herself fall for Elliot, fearing she would get hurt again. Elliot, however, was endlessly charmed by her and proposed to her spontaneously when he caught her in a particularly happy mood. Elliot wanted to move quickly, fearing Kriss would change her mind if he waited. They were married within a month of his proposal and after the wedding Kriss finally settled into the realization that Elliot loved her for herself with no intention of ever being separated from her.
They stayed in Columbia, though Elliot’s curious nature ended up taking them to the edges of Illéa in search of new things to study. They had no children but did end up raising several pets, many exotic, which they also studied.
|“||I'm braver than you think, America. You have no idea the things I've sacrificed over the years. And if I make a mistake, I own up to it.||”|
—Kriss Ambers to America Singer
Kriss seemed to be kind and not as manipulative as Celeste was. She was described as being ladylike. Being a Three, Kriss came from a smart family and is intelligent. Her parents are professors. Before the Selection, Kriss would spend her time reading and learning how to become a teacher. While being polite the majority of the time, Kriss has shown a tendency to get jealous and become defensive when Maxon was involved and she felt threatened by America. She also was very driven, confident, and noisy throughout The Elite and The One.
Kriss has brunette hair and hazel eyes. It is unknown whether she received changes during her makeover, but she may have worn day dresses and kitten heels (as all girls wore during the makeover). America tended to get jealous when she saw Kriss wearing a better gown than her and is ashamed for wearing something simple (as shown at the Convicting). Kriss wore beautiful dresses and was sure to stand out in the fashion department. In The Prince, Maxon stated that she is a slim brunette.
- Kriss was born before Halloween and after Prince Maxon's birthday (August 23rd), so her birthday is either in September or early October making her a fall baby.
- Kriss was in the Selection for the cause of the Northern Rebels, but neither Georgia nor August mentioned her to America or Maxon. However, this simply could have been to protect Kriss.
- In her family, it's tradition for the couples to kiss each other when they are already engaged. Kriss asked for Maxon to wait, but she refused to wait any longer in The One.
- She was the first person of the Elites to see Maxon's room. Although Maxon stated that it was a little bit impulsive of him.
- In her family, they make cards for each other when they want to cheer the other up.
- As a Northern Rebel, she is wearing a star necklace.
- Kriss mentions that singer Tessa Tamble is her favorite.
- Kiera Cass stated that if the Southern rebels hadn't attacked the day Maxon was supposed to choose between America and Kriss, he would have chosen and married Kriss.
- Her parents are both professors. Kriss became a Math professor at the local university in Columbia, where her husband Elliot Piaria was also a botanist professor.
- Kriss has a humble, and classy attitude.
- It is referred in Happily Ever After that she often regrets giving away her first kiss.
Meet Kriss! The Sweetheart in the Selection!