Divergent trilogy; book I
Book of the Month for May
My lovelies, I don't think this needs an introduction. One of the most hotly anticipated
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.
My Expectations: Aly really loved this, so going in, I had some incredibly high expectations.
Delivery: Man, see review below. Loved it.
Put-down-ability: low! 2/10, because it's kind of long but sooo addicting.
Divergent… Wow. I was quite simply, blown away. Entertainment-wise, this is the best book I’ve read this year, hands down. A 500 page beast.
However... as I finished the novel, I just had this feeling like something was missing. It took me a while and a lot of pondering when it clicked: I was never emotionally invested enough. To me, it was all very suface-y, it was a mile wide and an inch deep. At the surface, I loved it. I was head over heels. I could not put down the book and I loved everything about it.
But below the surface, I couldn’t connect with the characters. I liked Tris—a lot—and I think she’s Katniss material, I loved her character, but not her. I know I’m inching into crazy territory, but I don’t know how else to put it. Despite all the unpredictable plot twists, I was nowhere near shedding tears for any character deaths. There were a few jarring instances that kept me glued to the pages, but not ripping up my heart, especially at the very end.
In relation back to my thoughts on Wither, I thought the world-building was exceptional (I’m serious. I can’t even scrape my jaw off the floor) but the premise, the logic behind it all failed me. I love the idea of the five factions.. but my main thought was WHY? Why is any of this necessary? How is separating the entire population into five characteristics the logical way to run a city? The aptitude tests at the beginning were, simply put, perplexing. Does the entire city depend on a series of 5 or so tests to determine what 16 year olds (teenagers!) will be for the rest of their lives? It’s so black and white and unrealistic, which left me feeling lost.
But these misgivings aside, I can’t compliment this novel enough. There is no love triangle! Yay! There is romance, violence, action, mystery, and all in all-- it’s freaking exhilarating, it’s addicting, it’s an adrenaline-filled ride and based on that alone, I can say I loved it.
Book in HP Terms: Exceeds Expectations
Recommended for: Everyone! Well, unless you hate dystopian books with cool stuff going on. Which is nobody.
Acknowledgements: none in ARC :(
9.1/10 - because I don't feel I can change this rating because of just how much I enjoyed this book. While thinking back, there are definitely some issues with the premise of Divergent and how I could have been more emotionally connected. Nevertheless, there is no doubt in my mind that I loved the reading experience, and I will leave it at that. =)
source: won in contest from Writing Jewels (thank you!)
author twitter / blog
BrowseInside: Read the first 100 Pages!!