Book Synopsis (from Goodreads): 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, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
This is my new favorite series; I can tell already. Ever since I read The Hunger Games, Matched and The Maze Runner, I’ve been feeling a little “meh” about finding a new awesome dystopian trilogy. But no fear – I’ve found it!
Divergent was a thrilling read from the beginning to the end. I actually had to slow myself down while reading so I could delay the awesomeness and bask in it as much as possible. Seriously. For example, I love the factions. At first I thought, how could only five factions define all of humanity? (Well, I found out it couldn’t, but that’s beside the point. Er, I mean it is the point.) Each faction is vastly different and each one provides a different community or way of living than the next which is probably my favorite thing about dystopian novels. I love exploring the worlds authors create and imagining how society could have possibly evolved this way. The almost insane, brave and courageous Dauntless provided a striking contrast to Abnegation’s uniformity and generosity. I believed Veronica Roth’s new world and found it equal parts stifling as well as exhilarating. I’m looking forward to delving deeper into the other factions as the series goes on.
Tris is a dynamic protagonist: she’s not perfect and she’s definitely not bad, but her character does seem to lie somewhere in the middle seeing as she’s constantly torn between going with her gut and doing what’s right, or being a follower and saving her own butt while others are in trouble. I think I like her and I’m hoping she gets emotionally stronger in the next book.
Now can we talk about Four? Four is one of the best boys to pine for in 2011, if such list does exist. He’s brave, strong, sexy? (I never got a good feel for what he looked like but it didn’t matter because his personality is a-blazing!) and oh yeah, he doesn’t treat Tris like a delicate flower about to wither at any given moment. I found the growing connection between Tris and Four to be just as important and engaging as the faction drama revolving around them.
To say I’m looking forward to the next in the series is a huge understatement. Veronica Roth is a debut author and SHE’S ONLY 22. Yup. Go get Divergent!