Divergent by Veronica Roth Review
Amanda Leon Monday, January 13
Author: Veronica Roth
Release Date: April 25, 2011
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, 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 to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating 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 a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series—dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.
This is my third time reading Divergent in preparation of its finale, Allegiant. Since I've read this more than once, I already know where the plot heads off and it's 'controversial' twist at the end of Insurgent.
Divergent starts out in post apocalyptic Chicago where in a reaction to all the bad that humans have done to the world, they have created a system separated on the virtues that each individual faction believe are the most important. The five factions are:
-Abnegation (the selfless)
-Amity (the peaceful)
-Candor (the honest)
-Dauntless (the brave)
-Erudite (the intelligent)
Divergent is extremely entertaining and certainly keeps you on your toes. While the twists are not too surprising, Roth maintains a great tension in the narrative even if you already know what's going to happen. It's problems, such as it's unrealistic setup and lack of explanation to what is outside the fence that surrounds Chicago and why none of its citizens ever question what is outside of their own city or how even with the most intense conditioning, a person can just have one virtue or characteristic that makes up their whole personality.
There's only so much a reader can suspend their disbelief but I will elaborate on Divergent's world building in my Insurgent review.
The bottom line is that Divergent is a good read. It keeps your attention, you root and sympathize for most of the characters and it makes you want to keep reading because you want to find out what happens next. Having re-read this, even though I know what's going to happen, I still stay up late and carry this around to read because it's just that engrossing of a story.
The first book in the Divergent trilogy is a light, blockbuster read but if you're looking for more serious dystopia, then you'll find yourself disappointed. Despite its faults and shortcomings, I definitely recommend Divergent.
And on my goodreads, the novellas and companion novels that were released:
Have you read Divergent? What did you think of it? Let me know below!