Book: Divergent (Divergent trilogy#1)
Author/Authoress: Veronica Roth
Have you seen the American cover? It’s just gorgeous, although the UK one is pretty good too. I admit it, the cover was what attracted me to the book.
Plot: 2/5 (Taken from goodreads.com)
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her
I didn’t really connect with any of the characters. Tris comes off as a little whiny with her constant complaints about her appearance and griping at the unfairness of her life. Her best-friend, Christina, seems to barely exist once the story gets going. In fact, her character consists mostly of makeovers, hamburgers, jealousy and pity. The love intrest seems to be a series of checkmarks. Hot? Check. Brooding? Check. Mysterious? Check. Horrible past? Check? Childhood connection with the heroine? Check. I guess one interesting thing about this book are the abundance of villains. First Tris overcomes her personal villain; then she overcomes her boyfriend’s personal villain and finally she tries defeating society’s villain. The only characters which worked were Will- a funny, intelligent guy who befriends Tris but she is later forced to kill and Tris’s mom who sacrificed her life for Tris after revealing she was living a double life. But even then, Veronica Roth barely scratched the surface of these multi-faceted characters; elaborating on there characters would make for an interesting read.
Technical Terms: 3/5
The world building uses a lot of new terms. The factions are divided on basis of character traits.
Your faction defines the food you eat, the clothes you wear and where you live. Sometimes it’s hard keeping it all straight. But I have to give Veronica Roth credit for one thing- there are no infodumps; the information is spread gradually.
And here’s one thing that wasn’t spread gradually. There was love at first sight! Ew. Another thing I covered in the character section was the love interest. Double ew. I appreciated the fact that they didn’t round all the bases right away- but I get the feeling that they’re implying that if you do round the bases before marriage, you’re morally lacking. And it’s the love interest is so, so cheesy.
“I might be in love with you.” He smiles a little. “I’m waiting until I’m sure to tell you, though.”
The society structure in this book seems very unlikely. I love the idea of society being divided into factions based on character but let’s face it; it’s never gonna happen.
We’ve all started to put down the virtues of the other factions in the process of bolstering our own. I don’t want to do that. I want to be brave, and selfless, and smart, and kind, and honest.”
It just seems like someone should have figured this out sooner.
If there’s anything that made this book stand out, it’s the action. The whole book is like a James bond flick. Veronica Roth throws a bunch of action at us in hopes of distracting us from the slow plot…and it works.
I understand that this is only the first book in the trilogy and that Veronica Roth needs to maintain some mystery, but I don’t understand why this book is so short; I mean that the plot was less developed than it should have. The real action/mystery doesn’t begin until the end of the book and it gets over far to quickly. Majority of the book is used up in word building and character building. Although a few tantalizing hints are dangled at the beginning of the book, the details of the nefarious plot get buried under the teen drama and fight scenes (not that I’m complaining about the latter of course). By the time the nefarious plot is finally unveiled, the book is ended–On a major cliffhanger, might I add.
Overall Rating: 2.5 rounded up to 3
If you’re bored and don’t hve anything else to read or if your friends are driving you crazy by constantly fangirling over this book- read it. Just don’t expect too much from it.
P.S. Insurgent and Allegient are a lot better than this book