Divergent by Veronica Roth
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Sooo… while Divergent didn’t completely knock the stuffing out of me, as far as YA novels go, this was a solid and engaging run! Divergent takes an interesting idea and spins it into a hook that keeps you wanting to turn the page. I just wonder how all of this looks when taken to its logical conclusion. I watched the first two movies but haven’t seen the last two, deliberately, as I wanted to experience the literature first. (As a side note, I really love how the movies brought the novels to life and fills in a lot of the visual gaps.)
THE STORY: For me, Divergent’s plot turned out to be a bit flat and unsurprising, but the character relationships were REALLY fascinating. Character depth, conflict, the exploration of humanity and morality, and especially the romantic / sexual tension, are where Roth shines! Roth does a great job of exploring the tense, nervous, and yet somehow heady relationship between Four and Tris, drawing us into their tension and holding us there.
AS A SIDE NOTE: Readers often compare Divergent to The Hunger Games, which personally, I find unreasonable and ridiculous. And kinda cray too, lol. Come on, really? They’re two completely different stories, set in two completely different locations, courting two different worlds, and featuring two COMPLETELY different heroines who have different stakes and arcs. The only similarity between them is the fact that they are dystopian works with strong female leads… and if that makes them the same, then I advise readers to broaden their ideas of genre and girlhood.
In all, this is a light and enjoyable read, and I’d totally take it to the beach or on vacay with me. Many thanks to Roth for putting her wonderful voice and ideas into the world. I love dystopian stories with complicated heroines, and I will DEFINITELY be continuing this series (and hopefully completing it) in 2017!
Rock on, READ on,