Warning- if you tend to insert yourself into characters while reading...stay away from hammers, knives, and gyms. This book will make you feel ten times more bad ass while doing simple tasks. Like making dinner, or putting up picture frames.
Waving around a hammer does not make you bad ass or Dauntless.
And anyone who hears you proclaiming your Dauntless status while inserting nails into wood…will likely laugh at you.
Learn from my mistakes people...
The more I analyze this book, the more faults I find. But it was impossible to put this book down, and I cannot wait to read the next one. I devoured it. Like Anna and Elsa eating chocolate. And hot damn, was it delicious.
So why did I love this book? Because it was hard to put down. It wasn’t the best written book I’d read, and it certainly wasn’t flawlessly plotted, but it was engrossing. If you can manage to not analyze while reading…READ IT. Heck, even if you can’t turn off your brain while reading, read it.
P.S. Spoilers are coming!
What was wrong with the book?
The idea of Divergents:
Why are more people not Divergent? I don’t know a single human who is only brave, selfless, truthful, intelligent, or works for peace. Because that is what being human is, being a myriad of all sorts of qualities, being Divergent. We just jumped into the future; this book isn’t about a different race, so the idea that everyone can fit into a faction doesn't make any logical sense.
When does Tris become so bad ass?:
She is all nervous at the beginning and really not good at fighting- a total underdog…and then BAM all of a sudden she becomes good enough to beat people when she is really, really angry. I’m sorry…where did this miraculous transformation happen?? *flips through the pages* Oh that’s right…it didn’t.
Tris’ ability to think…or lack of ability:
Her mother tells her to stay in the middle, to be unnoticeable. Repeatedly Four tries to tell her the same thing. Does she listen? Does she even TRY to do what they say? No. This fact irritated me so much. If you are smart, if you are brave, then you would stay in the simulation longer, protecting yourself from scrutiny, rather than stupidly rushing through the simulations ten times faster than anyone else and giving your extra special nature away.
Lacking relationship development:
The amount of feels when she kills Will. Zero. Why? Because there is no friendship development in this book. Nothing meaningful anyway. There was only Tris and Four relationship building. This drove me nuts. It was like Twilight all over again! What is the purpose in creating friends for your character if you only use them as pawns to push the story forward? I call that lazy writing. And it robbed me of the desired, heart-punching emotion when she is forced to kill Will. Then again...why couldn't she just knock him out and take his gun? I digress...
This is the big one:
There were three instances where the “OMFG we already discovered this Tris!” smacked me in the face and made me threaten to tear out pages. However, I only remember the specifics of one of these moments:
When Tris’ mom comes to visit they talk in a closet, and Tris comes to this realization:
My mother was Dauntless.
When Tris’ mom comes to save her (hundreds of pages later...) she again comes to the same conclusion:
She pushes me against the wall and takes off her gray jacket. She wears a sleeveless shirt. When she lifts her arm, I see the corner of a tattoo under her armpit. No wonder she never changed clothes in front of me. “Mom,” I say, my voice strained. “You were Dauntless.”
“Yes,” she says, smiling. She makes her jacket into a sling for my arm, tying the sleeves around my neck. “And it has served me well today. Your father and Caleb and some others are hiding in a basement at the intersection of North and Fairfield. We have to go get them.” I stare at her. I sat next to her at the kitchen table, twice a day, for sixteen years, and never once did I consider the possibility that she could have been anything but Abnegation-born. How well did I actually know my mother?
Let us not even breach the impossibilities of Tris’ mom saving her. She was Dauntless before transferring- which means she never passed any tests. Which means everyone in the compound, who should be holding Tris prisoner, would be five times more able and bad ass than Tris’ mom. And yet she manages to free Tris…all alone. Anyway not the point.
The point of this is Tris already knew her mother was Dauntless. This whole realization of she doesn’t know who her mother is, ect should have happened when she first realizes it on page 188. Instead it is treated like the first time she is discovering this fact. We have had hundreds of pages to process this. Did your head get hit too many times Tris; are you forgetting things?
So obviously this book had problems. Lots of problems. But I loved it. I give it 4.5 stars, simply because I cannot give it five with all this whining.
Have YOU read Divergent? I’d love to hear what you think! Let me know in the comments what you thought of the book, or what you thought of my opinion :D