Book Review: What’s all the Fuss About Divergent?

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Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Rating: Two Stars
Thoughts: Readable, but not life-changing; Another dystopian romance; I’m just not buying it (Literally)

I felt compelled to read Veronica Roth’s Divergent, mostly because I’d heard rumors that there was a rape scene and, well, when a book sweeps through the YA world, a young girl gets curious.

Roth has a very matter-of-fact way of writing, nothing unusual for her genre, which made for a quick, action-packed read. The premise is a bit thin (strong/fearless means you must be fairly dumb and cruel; intelligent means you must be greedy; caring means you must be meek? She doesn’t even talk much about the other two factions, at least not in this book) but enough to keep the pages turning even without much historical justification for this world. Her protagonist, in my personal opinion, was fairly lackluster though. The draw of seeing a young girl capable of great physical feats was done better in The Hunger Games, and by a more compelling narrator, too (and I’m not even a huge Hunger Games fan).

So what, I wondered, as I eagerly (yeah, I’ll admit it) flipped the pages of this book looking for the answer, had everyone so up-in-arms about this book?

Four, of course. It may be just me, but does anyone else find it a bit sad that the only thing that keeps young girls reading are feeble, unrealistic romantic connections? I liked Tris more before Four became her white knight. And I never quite saw what was so special about him, too. I mean, the boy hardly ever speaks. If she’s so badass that she’s top of her murderous, selfish class then why does she even need a protector?

But I’ll admit I was into it all until the ending. This books packs some biblical allegory with a tough punch, but Tris watches both her Mother and Father die with little more than a page of mourning and we’re supposed to believe it’s Four that she just can’t stand to kill?

How did we go from a girl remarkable for her ability to conquer her fears to a sniveling love-bug, making out on a train in 2.4 seconds? Serious thought: Has anyone ever witnessed this sort of teen-love in all these novels in real life? And while we’re at it, why are the intelligent people the bad guys? And if they’re so smart, why do none of them question this whole murder-plot except Tris’s brother, who has to be told to do so?

So I’ll just say, not worth the hype, but still worth a read if some 16-year-old loans it to you, but I won’t be seeing the movie or reading on. Sorry, Roth, but more power to you (Good luck with all the money!)!

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