"Good children's literature appeals not only to the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child."
~ Anonymous ~
Author: Veronica Roth
Publisher: HaperCollins Publishers
Published Date: September 2014
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, 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 alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together, they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes-fascinating, sometimes-exasperating 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 unrest and growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly-perfect society, she also learns that her secret might be what helps her save those she loves . . . or it might be what destroys her.
Beatrice "Tris" Prior lived in a world where there were social and political structures to determine at the age of 16 what the rest of your life would be like. There were certain character qualities that were necessary to live in this society such as: bravery/courage (Dauntless), selflessness (Abnegation), intelligence (Euridite), friendly/peaceful (Amity) and a moral compass (Candor). In order to determine which faction you belong in you would need to take a test that would determine which one is best suited for you. But with anything there's always a twist....you can choose to stay in the faction you're in or go into a new one. Of course, once you leave your faction you run the risk of losing your family and a sense of belonging but that's a risk you have to willing to take.
As much as I tried to like it and yes I know I gave it 2.75 books (because it might have potential) there was just something missing for me. I kept having to reread a lot of the paragraphs because I felt like something was missing or not quite touched upon. The book almost felt disjointed to me. The whole book was about Tris getting into her chosen faction while trying to hide who she really is from everyone. It becomes pretty clear that being a girl and the smallest initiate she had something to prove. She is able to make an impression on her trainers by virtue of having friends who try to protect her. Eventually she starts getting better and is able to get ahead. However, I didn't find Tris's character very interesting. While I was pulling for her to get ahead there wasn't much else that hooked me to the story. Her friends seemed more engaging to me than Tris. There was a bit of a love story and hardships but it wasn't anything that made her personality stand out. I know that this book is part of a series. Am I going to read the other books? Honestly, I don't know. I'll probably try just because I read the first one and I almost feel like I should know how it ends but I'm definitely not rushing to do it just yet.
What did you think of Divergent? Did you like Tris's character? Which faction do you think you would belong to? If you had the opportunity to change factions would you? Could you live in a place similar to where Tris lives?