Author: Veronica Roth
Publication Date: 5/3/11
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Blurb (GR): 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 book is getting so much hype, I think my blood pressure was running high before I even began. Basically, this book is 486 pages of action-packed fun. While I have a few gripes with it, this book basically delivered what you are all hoping it will.
Beatrice (Tris) Prior lives in a future Chicago where everyone is divided into six factions: Abegnation (the selfless), Dauntless (the courageous), Erudite (the knowledge-seekers), Amity (the hippies, oops, I mean the peaceful), and Candor (the honest). At sixteen, each young person is put through an aptitude test which determines the faction they will join for life--usually the one in which they've grown up. Tris, however, ends up in a different faction and this book follows her initiation trials in the Dauntless faction.
I read an interview somewhere in which Veronica Roth said she wanted to write a standalone. I get that--the YA market is saturated with series, but by dropping us into this world and then concentrating on Tris' trials, I felt like I was missing that undercurrent of rebellion. I'm sure this book will be compared to Hunger Games more times than anyone can count, but hey! that's a lot more flattering than comparing every vampire book to Twilight. Anyway, in Hunger Games, you could feel the rebellion growing. I was constantly wondering what was going on in other districts--and Suzanne Collins made us worry about it all. In Divergent, this element was lacking. I loved most of the book, but the climax and wrapup (if you can call it that) are only in the last 50 pages! This is an instance where I wish the author had built up the tension a little more, maybe given us a few other characters in different factions, and saved the ending scenes for a second (or third!) book. I just laughed a little bit thinking about how this book could've used a little dose of Matched to slow it down...
I hated the name of the male love interest. I don't want to spoiler it for any of you so I'm putting it in here--> view spoiler in original Goodreads review.
I keep trying to discuss this book with people so I can't wait till all you GR friends of mine get into it, too! You'll love it. Well, at least "really like it." I did.