Thursday, September 4, 2014

WWRW: Divergent

Joining Jessica because I actually read something!

Always late to the party, I finally read Divergent by Veronica Roth. In a word: underwhelming.

Since this book (and it's series) has been out for a while, I won't waste much time giving a book report. Basically, it's another young adult novel set in a dystopian future-Chicago. Some nameless war in years past has caused the society to split into 4 factions based on certain personality traits, and in Amish fashion, when a person reaches 16 s/he can choose which faction in which s/he will live out the remainder of her/his life.

We good?

The main character, "Beatrice/Tris", is revealed to be "divergent" when she undergoes the customary testing at age 16. This means she exemplifies strong characteristics of more that one faction and this is viewed as "bad". 

Blah, blah, blah. Fast forward past where she is advised to hide her "divergency", chooses a new faction, and is forced to abandon her parents and brother. 

This is where it began to lose all touch with any kind of reality for me. The violent and brutal initiation rites of the new faction, the quickly-formed rock-solid friendships, the ever-present references to physical sexual feelings (not overt, just overdone) did not feel "human" or "realistic" to me. 

For me, a story can be as far-fetched as Harry Potter, but still be "real" because the conversations between characters and the development of the characters themselves are true to human beings and our nature. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer is a good example of a plot that is far-fetched made even worse by poor dialogue and an unwillingness to "act human" on the part of the characters. This was never more evident as when the book was made into a movie and most intelligent people could easily hear and see the odd way the characters acted and conversed.

So it goes with Divergent. When I spoke some of the phrases out loud, I was faced immediately with the idea that no 2 people would ever really speak this way to one another. 

Divergent was a big "meh" in my opinion and I have no desire to read the rest of the series. And, I have even less desire to watch the movie. 
What is the fascination with this book?


  1. Yon may be late to the party, but I'm even later. Haven't read it, didn't know much about it, wasn't very interested in it. And now, I'm even less so. So, thank you for that? ;)

    1. I just saved you time, money, and a bleach wash for your eyes! You're welcome! ;)