Book Review: Divergent

Phyl CampbellStarred Page By Phyl Campbell, 3rd Jun 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/37asuvty/
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Books>Science Fiction & Fantasy

As promised, my review of Veronica Roth's Divergent!

Choices

How do you conquer fear? How do you know the right path to take for your life? Do you choose the path set by your father? According the the world-view of Divergent,

"One choice can transform you... One choice can destroy you..."

For protagonist Tris, one choice causes the loss of everything she has ever known, the greatest fears she has ever faced, and an adventure like nothing she ever could have imagined.

Factions

Roth's Divergent world is made up of five factions and a sixth group -- the factionless. (Those familiar with Hunger Games will notice some glaring similarities to the 12 +1 Districts.)

Abnegation -- selfless -- this is Tris' faction from birth.
Amity -- peaceful
Erudite -- intelligent -- often the ruling class along with Abnegation
Candor -- honest
Dauntless -- brave -- the faction Tris joins

Those without a faction are "factionless." They live in tent cities and are desperately poor. Tris worries that she is not good enough to continue life in her faction, and desperately does not want to be found out and factionless.

Though children are born into a faction, at a coming of age ceremony, they can choose whether to stay in their faction of birth or to make a change. Before the ceremony, they are tested with a kind of truth serum and a special simulation. Responses to the simulation should determine the faction. In Tris' case, it doesn't. Her non-standard results are hidden from public eye, and in hushed whispers, she is told she is "divergent." She is told not to reveal her state to anyone else -- not even her family.

On choosing day, she decides to leave her family and join the brave Dauntless faction. This causes her father's eyes to bore into her accusingly and her mother to smile. Tris does not know what to make of either reaction. But her new faction doesn't give her much time to dwell on it. They leave the building together and leap onto a moving train in an alternate Chicago, Illinois, USA.

Dauntless

In Dauntless faction, Tris learns to fight her fears and fight. These will prove valuable to her survival. She meets Tobias, another former Abnegation member whose nickname highlights the fact that there is little he fears. Some people suspect she is Divergent and wish to humiliate her -- even eliminate her. Some people hate her because they hate her father's ideology. By being who she is, she has made lots of enemies she is not aware of. It is hard for her to know who she can trust, though without some allies, she will not be long for this world.

Characters

Tris (AKA Beatrice) and Tobias (AKA Four) are wonderful, but then all the characters Roth envisions in Divergent are. Every character in this rather extensive (487 page) novel is vibrant and stands alone. So many characters in a work with lots of people fall flat. Not here.

Divergent is a novel that has it all -- adventure. Indecision. Soul-searching. In this first book, while the test leading to the choice is very sci-fi worldly, Tris' actions are extraordinary in their ordinariness. There is nothing alien about her hard work. She knows she must survive, so she does. She faces fears head on and therefore life continues. For those with an interest in sci-fi, action-adventure, and especially Dystopian fiction, this book and its sequels are must-reads.

Read my other book-related reviews and articles:
Dystopian Fiction
Almost Magic
Magic Wakes

See more articles by going to my author page

Check me out on Facebook or check out my books and webpage.

Credits:
YouTube for Trailer
Book Cover -- http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=divergent+book+cover&go=Submit+Query&qs=ds&form=QBIR#view=detail&id=620BAC9484345467259E4470882E1C9CCF50A8B5&selectedIndex=0
Abnegation Image -- Divergentfans.com
Dauntless Image -- http://api.ning.com/files/ba0oUbc00*pZvhDbmY3wIPd2XYvvbw9yFd5bYwiVM00HDDF7wLoTIMZbg11pBOPuOaW9nhDIFF*9PquQrgWgLKGhioDtvS7n/Divergent.png?width=398&height=390
Movie Image -- fanpop.com

Tags

Choices, Divergent, Factions, Fear, Fiction, Four, Tris, Veronica Roth

Meet the author

author avatar Phyl Campbell
I am "Author, Mother, Dreamer." I am also teacher, friend, Dr. Pepper addict, night-owl. Visit my website -- phylcampbell.com -- or the "Phyl Campbell Author Page" on Facebook.

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Comments

author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, Mark!!

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author avatar spirited
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Sounds like an interesting read Phyl.

Your review made it more interesting!

Thanks for diverging here to write about it.LOL

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, Spirited! It is easy to write about amazing books! ;)

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author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Great review work...

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author avatar n.c.radomes
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Splendid task done. Keep up!

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author avatar Pollyal
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

As everyone else said, your review made it very interesting

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks to all!

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
3rd Jun 2014 (#)

a great review indeed...you sparkle Phyl....

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, ma'am! I feel kinda sparkly... :)

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author avatar vellur
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Great review, will read this book.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Have tissues handy!!

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Awesome review Phyl, is ti available at Amazon? Looks very interesting!

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author avatar Ptrikha
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Great review ! Kudos!

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Yes, Mr. Fern. It is available on Amazon and any major bookstore. It is so popular that it can also be found at grocers and general merchandise stores (ie WalMart, Target).

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, Ptrikha!

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks for this good review Phyl, but being 500 pages I have to pause for now - siva

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
5th Jun 2014 (#)

I worried about that at first, but I read the whole series in a weekend. It went so fast. Then I thought about it for weeks after. To me, that is the sign of a great book -- one that keeps you thinking long after the cover is closed.

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author avatar ritzwitz
4th Jun 2014 (#)

Great review...adding it to my list!

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
5th Jun 2014 (#)

Ritzwitz, I am also looking forward to the movie!!

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author avatar Feisty
5th Jun 2014 (#)

This sounds like a good read -- and it must be for you to have read the entire series in a weekend. : )

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
5th Jun 2014 (#)

I will admit two things:
I am an avid reader, so 1500 pages of a book I enjoy is easily traversed in a lazy weekend.
There are MANY people who love this series and hate how the 3rd book ends.

Those things admitted, if a story is not compelling or is badly written, it can take me a week (and a couple times, a month) to get through 200 pages. But between the stuff I found unpalatable, I would read many guilty pleasures.

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author avatar Kingwell
9th Jun 2014 (#)

The book certainly seems to have it al. Good review.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
10th Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, Kingwell!

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author avatar Carol
11th Jun 2014 (#)

Great review Phyl

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
11th Jun 2014 (#)

Thanks, Carol!

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author avatar Ptrikha
2nd Oct 2014 (#)

I like the idea of sharing older posts on Twitter. I am also trying to do it.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

Thanks, Ptrikha. There are articles where I wouldn't recommend it -- but current issues, book reviews, and how tos are all important to my follower base. Today, a Divergent Twitter group started following me -- favored and RT'd this article. Over 14K followers in that group, and its creator picked up on my hashtags and started following me. If I were smart, now I would follow up with a review of the 2nd and 3rd books and the movie so I would have new relevant content for those followers. But my articles are attracting a lot more attention these days, so I have a lot of directions to go in. It is awesome and yet intimidating to know where to go next -- what's the biggest bang for my buck, so to speak.
Thanks for your constant support!

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

oops - favored should be favorited.

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