Divergent by Veronica Roth
Genre: YA Dystopian
"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. 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."
Who wouldn't immediately go out and buy this book with such an enticing description? If you haven't already done so, please do; this novel is well-worth the money and time. Divergent measured up to all the good things I have heard about it from friends and family. It has plenty of action, but also is very character-driven. The main character, Tris, is very straight-forward and often blunt, which can be a bit irritating at times, as well as her brusqueness and stubbornness, but she recognizes that she has faults and desires to change them throughout the novel. I love that this character is so self-reflective and sensitive to her faults, because it causes the readers to be as well.
Veronica Roth does a good job of exploring and developing the characters (mainly Tris), while also moving the novel along at a good pace. I also love the deep questions she brings up about bravery and fearlessness. The whole premise of the novel, a society divided up by different values, is just fascinating to me, and Roth explores the pros and cons of them well, especially in the sequel, Insurgent, which I will probably expound upon in another blog post.
I couldn't find much, if any, fault with this novel. I find the characters intriguing, and Roth is not afraid to show life in all its brutal, yet hope-yearning reality. This novel will definitely keep you on your toes with the action and societal/character mysteries. I give it a 4.5 out of 5 and recommend it to 16 year olds and up because of a few violent/graphic scenes.
What I learned: Bravery is about moving on even when you don't want to. Bravery encompasses self-sacrifice and honesty.
My favorite quote: "Becoming fearless isn't the point. That's impossible. It's learning how to control your fear, and how to be free from it, that's the point."
-There's a movie coming out soon (March?) based on this movie, so make sure you read the book first! If you want to read more about Veronica Roth, her books, or the movie, check out her blog: http://veronicarothbooks.blogspot.com/