Divergent or the tale of nail biting & picking was a dsytopian society set in Chicago. We aren't told much of why their society began this way or why the city is closed off from the rest of the world. I hope Insurgent answers my questions.
I've been to Chicago only once but I find it hard to imagine people can live cooped up for so long in one city. It's a fairly large city but as a country
? Dauntless weren't antsy being cooped up?.
I find it hard to believe these problems weren't foreseen by their forbears long before the events that occurred in Divergent. Can't people can value bravery and freedom without being killed? I'd be a divergent myself because I think transparency and freedom are the two most important things a government can and should provide their citizens but Candor turned me off in it's current form. People also deserve privacy.
The author clearly admires Abnegation the most. I do think being selfless is important but children are
selfish. That part was the best part of the book and when the character Tris was the most relatable.
People will resent others if they have to give up everything for others. The Abnegation society can't function for the same reason Amity could not. Eventually someone will want something different [Amity] while Abnegation would probably read like the Vultures in The Jungle Book.
"What do you want to do today?"
"I don't know. What do you want to do today?"
They even wear the appropriate grey.
The strength of this book depends on if you buy into that most people are just one thing. I don't agree with that. I'm hoping that in the next book she meets more people that are Divergent. I do think people will do a lot to fit into society so that makes up for that weak area. Tris didn't show too many sides of being Divergent. She showed a lot of Dauntless though. She had a good moral upbringing which seemed to make up for more of her going against the grain than being Divergent. She took a lot on faith until other characters such as Will and Four explained that Dauntless wasn't always about throwing people to the wolves.
If being Divergent just ends up being a genetic difference in simulation serums I'll be disappointed and might down star this book after I read Insurgent. Tris made the comment you replace traits with other ones but they all have a flip side. I hope this is where Roth is going with this. It took Tris too long to catch on that doing stunts to get you killed isn't what Dauntless was originally about.
Every faction was well described and it was easily explained by showing us through characterization the faults of each one. She didn't have to resort to telling us or throw anything in.
I gave it four stars since government propaganda and transparency are very important issues to me. The villain of this book basically ran a smear campaign all year about Abnegation before she resorted to mind control. This is where the book failed in the last half. If people had turned on others without being manipulated by a serum it would have been far scarier.
The pros of the books-
Strong heroine & love interest. I liked Four a lot. Their romance was predictable but it wasn't cliched. Well except at the end.
Good political story.
Ideals before people and relationships aren't healthy.
Don't be all of one thing.
Her family dynamic. Her brother Caleb was an interesting character.
The factionless. We didn't get to learn much of them. This is clearly where the cruelty of this set-up with factions has been. No wonder the Dauntless initiates were cutthroat. If you make the wrong choice in any of the factions you become factionless and live a life without food.
Not much happened if you take away the Dauntless initiation which wasn't that important. Except for the creepy subplot with Al I found it rather boring.
The nail biting description and several characters played with their cuticles. What gives here?