Thursday, November 14, 2013

Review: "Divergent" by Veronica Roth

Title: Divergent
Series: Divergent #1
Author: Veronica Roth
Publisher: HarperCollins
Year: 2012

"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 threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her"

This was the second time I read „Divergent“. In the light of the 3rd book, „Allegiant“, being released at the end of October I decided that it was time to reread this brilliant book. Imagine my disappointment when I went to the bookstore two days after the book was released just to find out a) It had been sold out. And b) the cover that matches the books that I have was only released in hardback and will not be out in paperback before February. Goodie. I would have torched the place if I would not love it so much.

When I first read Divergent, about a year ago, I had already heard a lot about it. It was developing a large fan base very fast and was quickly labelled the next big thing. And since Twilight (bleh) was the next big thing once, I was hesitant to pick it up. It was actually when I bought „The Golden Lily“ by Richelle Mead and that had a „Buy one get one half price“ sticker on it, that I picked up „Divergent“.

I started reading „Divergent“ for the first time on a trip around last Christmas. I first opened the book at 11 PM and did not close it before 4AM. By that time my eyes were hurting from the weak light but I was still sad I could not keep going. It had a similar effect on me when I was rereading it last week. It is impossible to put down. I was late to my lecture because I kept telling myself that I just need to finish one more page. And I already knew what was going to happen!

Veronica Roth has one of the most amazing writing styles. It flows so smoothly and if by the help of some black magic you actually put the book down then it is so easy to get lost in it when you pick it up again.

The story. I do not want to spoil anything for someone who has yet to start with this book (what on earth are you still waiting for). But this book made me love dystopian novels. The world that Roth creates is amazing. The story is a brilliant, unique idea. I had never read anything like it before.

The characters deserve applause. Tris is a character that evolves. While she doubts herself from time to time, she is very tough. I like my female protagonists tough. Tris turned from shy to badass, quickly but not too soon. And I liked that the male-interest is kind of a jerk at first. It made the whole thing so much more believable. Tris has some cool friends, each different and awesome in their own way. They are no place-fillers. Each of them could stand alone and still be interesting.

Can I think of anything bad to say about this book? You know what, not really. The things that caught my eye while reading were blown from my mind by the whirlwind of awesome that was „Divergent“.

For these reasons and more, this deserves full five stars.

 This review has been brought to you by your Book Mistress for the day.

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