I've had quite a few different people recommend this series to me based on my love for HP, The Hunger Games, The Chronicles of Narnia, and my love/hate relationship with Twilight-- amongst all of the other YA novels that I love dearly.
For some reason though, I kept putting it off. That is, until Thursday when I noticed our library had a copy-- It was a sign, right? I had to read it! That night we had dinner plans with a family in town, and didn't get home until around 8:30-9:00 o'clock. After Gar and I finally got everyone cleaned up and in bed, I pulled out the book. I read about 80 pages or so before I called it a night.
I was not impressed.
It was an easy read, and I knew I'd finish it. (I'm not the type to start a book and not finish it, no matter how sucktastic it is.) But, those first 80 pages were full of vague detail, tons of cliche's and a lot of plot holes.
Friday night I did read the remaining 400 pages... but the entire time I couldn't wrap my head around why people were so in love with this book. It makes absolutely no sense and has hardly any character development! Not to mention-- the plot is insanely predictable. I knew Four, for example, was Tobias, as soon as he was introduced. I know this sounds a bit harsh and, maybe I had the novel built up in my head because I had heard how amazing it was-- but-- I felt more "meh" about it if anything. I often found myself bored with the writing, skimming a lot of it in order to get to the more "juicy" parts.
The book takes place, for those of you who haven't read it, in a futuristic, dystopian Chicago that has been divided into 5 individual factions of society. We are first introduced to Abnegation, the MC Beatrice (later known as 'Tris') is originally a member of this faction. What I know about Abnegation- they wear grey, over sized clothes, aren't allowed to look in the mirror or ask question's to adults until they are over the age of 16, and they are the leaders of government because they are so incredibly selfless and plain.
The next group is Dauntless- they are the tough guys of this society, the heavy. Everyone dresses Gothic and has tattoos and hoops all over their face. (Honestly, if I had to hear Tris talk about how her parents would "never believe all of these people with a hoop through their nose doing so and so" like normal people-- I could have very easily lost my shit.) The members of this faction are fearless and like to trainhop as a means of transportation. Naturally, they are the one's who are in charge of protecting the city. (From what? I have no idea. That is never explained.) They are also the only people with weapons. Because that's smart.
The Erudite are another faction. This group is for those who seek and appreciate knowledge. They are in charge of creating serums that are very similar to an acid trip. These help test the societies 16 year olds to see what faction they should become members of. The evil that overtakes this society springs from the leaders of this faction-- because apparently those who seek knowledge, seek power and luxuries. Also, the leader, Janene or however it's spelled, wears glasses because it makes her look smart.
Then there is Candor and Amity. Candor's are human lie-detectors and walk around insulting everyone because honesty- in their opinion, is the most important part of life. Amity-- they farm and play the banjo. And drive trucks.
This book moves slow, you guys. Tris, after cutting her hand open and bleeding into the "Dauntless Coals"- leaves her parents behind and begins the hazing initiation into Dauntless faction. Tris, we are told, is a blond with plain features who, despite looking like a "child" is 16 years old. She gets tattoos, wears eye liner and black clothes, and gets the living crap beat out of her countless times. Then, she is given hallucinogenic drugs that show her greatest fears.
But, oh no! Tris knows that she's in a hallucination and can't be controlled, so she is considered Divergent-- and is in danger! And, guess what?! (Saw this one a mile away!) Four is divergent too! Another big surprise-- the super hunky/mysterious Four, who is older, comes from a troubled background and is all misunderstood and stuff falls for Tris despite her child-like appearance. XOXO smooches. Snore.
The last 60 or so pages is where all the action takes place. Tris becomes a skilled Ninja killing machine out of nowhere and saves the day! Obviously.
Blah blah blah.
Will I probably finish the series? Yes. I'm in no rush to pick up Insurgent-- but I will at some point. And, the last book is coming out soon from what I hear.
This book is overrated. A lot of things are not explained in enough detail and the society isn't set up in a way that is easy for the reader to understand (ie- backstory is NONexistant.) I still don't quite get the dynamic of the factions nor do I feel very invested in Tris&Four. Maybe Insurgent will be better?
Any of you read this book yet? What are your thoughts?