Book Review – Divergent and Insurgent

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I just finished the second book of Veronica Roth’s Divergent Trilogy.  And wow, was it good!

This is another dystopian society type of young adult book, however I really like the way this society is structured.  It’s divided into five factions, each based on a philosophy on life.

The Erudite Faction believes that knowledge is most important.  They are the scientists and doctors in the society.  They wear blue and spectacles.  They are known to be curious, but also cold and calculating.

The Dauntless Faction believes that bravery is most important.  They are typically the security or protectors of the city.  They wear all black and typically have at least a couple of tattoos.  They are known to be strong and brave, but also reckless

The Abnegation Faction believes that being selflessness is most important.  They run the government and charities.  They wear all gray and are not big on their appearance.  They are known to be selfless, but also naïve and trusting.

The Candor Faction believes that truth is most important.  They are the lawyers; even use the scales as their symbol.  They wear black and white.  They are known to never lie, but are also pretty blunt.

The Amity Faction believes that friendship is most important.  They are farmers that live right outside the main city.  They wear bright colors like red and yellow.  They are very communal and friendly, but they don’t like to get too involved outside of their Faction.

When a person turns 16, they participate in a Choosing ceremony.  Even if someone grew up in one faction, they have a choice to leave that faction and their family to join a new faction.  First they go through a simulation that will help them choose which faction would fit them best.  Then, they make the choice at the ceremony where they are whisked off to that particular faction’s headquarters for initiation.  If they complete initiation, they are then considered a part of that new faction.  If they don’t complete it, they become faction-less and homeless which is a life worse than death in most eyes.

Beatrice, or Tris, is the main character, who grew up in Abnegation and chooses Dauntless.  The simulation she went through before the ceremony showed that she could fit into three different factions, something that had never happened before.  She also found out she was Divergent, which means that she can tell when she is under simulation and when she is not.

Without giving much away, the first book covers her going through her initiation and gives a glimpse that the factions might not work as well together as they seem.  In the second book, the rifts between factions grow even more, and they must choose to either work together or completely fall apart.  The problem is that each philosophy has a different idea on what must be done.

Because of Beatrice’s unique abilities, she is able to pull perspectives together and maybe even save the whole society.  However, there will definitely be loss along the way, and Roth does an excellent job addressing grief and guilt in a lot of the characters, as well as what pushes them towards certain decisions.  The books definitely focus on several themes, such as learning another’s perspective, what makes a selfish decision versus selfless, and how forgiveness can be greater than justice.

The third book is called Allegiant and doesn’t come out until October.  The second book left a lot to be answered, so I can’t wait.  What’s more, they are turning the books into movies!  The first one comes out on March 21, 2014.  I really hope they stay true to the book, because they are so good!  I would say of everything I have read in the Young Adult series type books, this is probably my top five.  If you haven’t read them yet, definitely check these out!

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4 thoughts on “Book Review – Divergent and Insurgent

  1. Seth introduced me to these books and I have to admit they have been my favorite dystopian series. I couldn’t believe he waited until I had started them to tell me that the third one wasn’t released yet. I have never read a series until all of the books are out, so I’m impatiently waiting on this one.

    • Yea, I’ll be honest, I thought the third one was coming out in August. The October date was very frustrating, to say the least! 🙂

  2. These sound really good! I enjoyed reading ‘Hunger Games’ which were for young adults, so maybe I should try another series for a fun summer read. 🙂

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