My Rating: 4/5
Provided by NetGallery in exchange for an honest review.
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, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
I have somehow managed to avoid all spoilers in this book – I haven’t spoken to anyone about them and I haven’t seen any of the films. How I have managed that, I really don’t know! However, I think it made reading the book a lot more enjoyable.
Part of the reason I avoided the book for so long is because of the comparisons between it, The Hunger Games and The Maze Runner. I have read all of the Hunger Games and the first Maze Runner book. Having read Divergent, I do not see the comparison – maybe there is a greater similarity between them later on in the series. The main similarity between them is that there are different factions (Candor, Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity and Erudite) and an uprising. However, both Divergent and The Hunger Games are dystopian books so of course there is going to be similarities in the worlds, in the same way that books about magicians will involve magic or that crime books will set red herrings.
Having avoided all spoilers made the book a lot more enjoyable. I could guess most of the main events – of course she was going to be divergent and move faction.The first half of the book was really enjoyable. I loved seeing the different factions and really enjoyed the tests. Her falling in loved was predictable, especially her falling in love with someone who also ends up being divergent was predictable. However, the romance element was built up gradually, which I like, it didn’t seem forced. There were a few surprises along the way which were refreshing.
I enjoyed this book, but would definitely say if you have heard anything about the plot it will be less enjoyable.