Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: February 28th 2012
Series: Divergent #1
Buy on: Amazon
Add on: Goodreads, Leafmarks
Rating 3.5 stars
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.
I was avoiding this book since it came out in 2012. I was seeing it everywhere, I heard about it everywhere, I even recommended it to customers at the bookstore because everyone was reading it. I was avoiding it mostly because, when a new book is coming out I usually refrain from reading it, and the reason? None at all. Its like a bad reflex.
Despite all the raving reviews for Divergent and the two sequels, I dont particularly think this book is 100% dystopian. I would rather categorize it under Young Adult Fantasy with a lot of futuristic and Hunger Games elements – minus the slaying of teenagers.
Meet Tris, a girl from the fraction of Abnegation who's life changes completely when a test categorises her as something abnormal – Divergent. She decides to leave her fraction for Dauntless. A group of people that mesmerized from a young age, when she realized that she is not selfless enough in order to belong to Abnegation. What struck me while the book progressed, was the fact that Tris became amazingly selfish. It seemed that she cared about her previous fraction but not enough. And that was kind of annoying. I liked that Tris decided to challenge herself and chose Dauntless, something that was completely different from what she was before. Although, selfish, she evolves.
Meet Four, a guy that is very intriguing and quiet but absolutely fit, and Tris's instructor. We get a lot of glimpses of him, until he becomes something more to Tris and although, the romance was not that sizzling, I cared for both of them deeply and I wanted (and want) to read more. I'm sure we will get a lot more of Four in the upcoming books.
The plot was okay, pretty simple in my opinion, and there were some subplots and things for consideration that ended up playing a major role in the progress of the book and the series. I am not crazy about it but I care enough to inhale the next two books in the series AND the book about Four.
At last, what struck me as odd is that people target this book towards teens of 12-17 of age but the violence in it is kind of much and at times shocking. From attacks, to catcalls, to suicide to extreme violence and fights. So I am not so sure if you would like your kid, cousin, niece whatever reading that if they are below 14 (again in my opinion).
So, yeah, dystopian or not this book is really good and it would appeal to the fans of The Hunger Games.