Sunday, November 11, 2012
Divergent, by Veronica Roth, is set in a futuristic Chicago and is very like the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. (See my review here). I'm not the first to compare it, but the others have certainly been correct in thinking the two similar.
Let's start with the government. They have decided to divide everyone into whatever nature suits them best- selflessness, bravery, honesty, kindness, and intellect. To keep everybody where they belong Chicago is divided into factions, named as follows: Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Erudite (the intelligent), Amity (the kind), and Candor (the honest).
When the citizens Chicago turn sixteen, they are forced to choose which faction they will spend the rest of their life in. Will they go to the place where they will be happiest, or will they stay with their families? In some cases, in many cases it seems, the teens are able to choose both. But not Beatrice Prior.
Born into Abnegation, Beatrice is unsure of what to decide- to stay with her family and friends but live a life that steals her of personal freedom, or run to where she can live purely on adrenaline. At the Choosing Ceremony, Miss Prior makes a decision that surprises everybody.
(Well, not me. I totally predicted her choice.)
When thrown into a life of trials and even more hard choices, Beatrice- renamed Tris- makes real friends and finds supposedly unexpected romance. (Again, I expected it. Sorry.)
Despite the book being rather on the predictable side, I still enjoyed most of it, and I can't say of many five hundred page books that I read it in one day. I eagerly put the second book in the trilogy on hold if only to see how Tris- how shall I put it?- redeemed herself in my eyes. Not the best book I've ever read- definitely not as good as the Hunger Games. But for a first novel, it's okay. ★★★☆☆.