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Book Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

Earlier last month, I listed Divergent as one of my Waiting on Wednesday picks. Not only was it worth the wait, but it is easily one of the best books I have read in a very long time.

divergent by veronica roth book review

Title & Author:Divergentby Veronica Roth

Genre: YA/Fantasy- Dystopian

Release Date: May 3, 2011

Series: Book 1 in a trilogy

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

How I Got the Book: Bought

Description: “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.”

Overview

Beatrice Prior has a decision to make. It will either be the best decision of her life or it will break her. After Beatrice gets the results from her  faction aptitude test, she must choose a faction to join for the rest of her life. Will she stay with Abnegation- her home faction where she feels like she doesn’t belong? Or will she make a leap of faith and switch factions and forsake all ties with her family?

Characters, World-Building

Note: I was pretty vague in this review, as I want everyone to experience the amazing moments of suspense and surprise that I did.

Not since The Hunger Games have I felt so much adrenaline pumping through me while reading a book. There was a delicate balance of important dialogue, character development and world building, but Roth packs a serious punch by infusing the story with non-stop action and mystery.

What I love best about Dystopians are the decisions people make when something terrible has happened to the world. In Divergent’s case, people decided to divide up into factions based on what kind of people the world needed more of. Candor prises honesty and openness. Erudite value intelligence and finding answers.

The only problem is that the factions have become complacent and have reverted to the worst or the extreme values their faction represents. Although Amity honors kindness and seek peace- they have become dishonest in order to keep peace at any cost. And, the Dauntless’ bravery has transformed into brutality.

This type of world is on the brink- it will either improve and reform its ways or disintegrate into war and strife. And Beatrice is about to find out which one it’s heading towards.

A Heart-Pumping Thrill Ride

From Beatrice’s choice of faction to the resulting consequences, I felt so connected to her struggle of “doing what’s expected of you” vs. “doing what you truly want.” What I really loved about Beatrice is that she doesn’t always play the hero. She is not selfless to a fault; sometimes she doesn’t do what she should or what her faction might expect of her.

To me, this makes her intersting and unpredictable, and a character I haven’t read about a million times before.

Things that got my heart race moving:

  • Jumping on and jumping off trains…without the train stopping
  • Zip-lining
  • Ultimate fighting
  • High intensity flirtations
  • Faction initiations

Overall

I absolutely ADORED, LOVED and AM OBSESSED with Divergent. It was the best book I’ve read this year- and probably for the last couple years. Please do yourself a favor and buy this book immediately!!

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
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