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on October 12, 2014
This set includes the trilogy, along with the extra book titled, "Four". I actually recommend reading Four first. It's the comets set. My 13 year old triplet boys started reading this series in school. They couldn't stop talking about it, so I bought this series for them, and I even read it myself. It's very, very good. The movie is pretty good too; although, the books are a lot more detailed. I highly recommend this series. I would caution for younger readers as the two main characters have some heated moments. Nothing that heavy, but on the line. I wouldn't want my 8 year old reading something like that. I hope this review has been helpful for the parents out there. All in all.. Definitely a great series! A Must Read!
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on January 30, 2015
I finally picked this up after waiting patiently for not only the movie to come out but for the trilogy to be complete. The idea of having to wait to read the entire series because it isn't out yet is rather annoying, so I'd just rather wait then get obsessive over it. Lets just say, if I didn't wait I definitely would have obsessed over when the next book comes out. I finished this in a sitting... mainly because I just broke night and read through it until the end. It was great! And I am so excited for the movie to come out on DVD so I can pick it up and finally watch it. I have been spoiled for some parts of the movie and some parts of the books thanks to Tumblr and Instagram, but still an amazing read... something I was not expecting. Lets just I have already ordered both Insurgent and Allegiant so I can get right into it. Although it bothers me that I had to get them both in Hardcopy, when my Divergent copy is in Paperback, but you know what... I'm that excited to finish the series. Plus I'm tired of getting spoiled so much. By now you can already tell I loved the book, I loved the world and the story building. I thought it was incredible! I loved Tris as the heroine, and when I say love I mean LOVE. Apart from Hermione, she is one of my favorite female characters! She was just amazing. And of course I loved Four, he was awesome as well! I just really enjoyed the book so much, I don't know what took me so long to read this! Definitely Highly Recommended!
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on September 26, 2014
Originally posted on my blog: Tangled Up In Books

When dystopia is done right there is nothing like it in the world. All of the contemporary, paranormal, historical, even epic fantasies will never measure up to how I feel when I get lost in these worlds. It is my all time favorite genre. So why has it taken me so long to finally read Divergent? I'm always afraid, almost doubly so when it comes to books that are surrounded by a lot of hype, what if this is one that disappoints me? Is it just going to be like all the rest?

--The other factions celebrate birthdays, but we don't. It would be self-indulgent.

The dystopian Chicago world that Veronica Roth has created is definitely unique, unlike any others I've read so far. It was interesting to learn a bit about the 5 different factions, a few more so than the others at this point, and also see how they interacted in a mixed setting like the high school in the beginning of the book. The way they all carry themselves and behave are so vastly different. I was fascinated by it all and it had me thinking, in the beginning, when I just had those brief first impressions, what faction would I choose? It felt like there was a bit of a benefit with each one, though I'm not sure I'd have survived Candor. 100% honesty at all times? I'm not one for lying and dishonesty but sometimes letting someone off easy instead of brutal honesty just feels better. Yeah I would not survive Candor. But the rest initially seemed to be groups I'd enjoy being around. That idea didn't stick around for long.

--"Just because we're in the same faction doesn't mean we get along."

As with books of this nature there are going to be characters you love and characters you all out despise. This book has both types in spades. And then there were those that flipped a switch on me before I finished, both in good ways and bad ones. It wound up making me cautious and start to doubt who I trust and who I don't. I adore Tris, she kicks some major ass. She's definitely one of my favorite female heroines. So strong and so smart. In a lot of ways this girl comes off as being full of confidence but underneath that there's a bit of fear and vulnerability even a bit of doubt within herself that helps her feel more real and more likable. And Four had me intrigued before I even opened the book. I mean if you've heard about this series then you've heard the girls are crazy about Four. I can see why. It's a very slow process learning about this guy and what's underneath the tough guy that everyone sees him as. He's definitely a mystery. Still don't know everything about him but he's already been placed up there with all my other book boyfriends. I can't wait to dive into Insurgent and find out what's next for these two.

--"A kiss is not something you do in public."

I am a romantic at heart and I love a good love story like the next person. But what I love about Divergent, so far at least, is that any sort of romance is really just sort of a side story and it's not the main focus of the book. All the kissing of the boys and the swoons and the fluttering of the heart are all awesome, but when I read dystopia I want creative worlds and conflicts and action and uprisings, rebellions. I want everything to fall apart and I want to be stressing out wondering how in the hell these people are going to come back from everything that's happened. I want all the things! And this book is full of all that, or at least beginnings of them in some cases. Jumping off moving trains and rooftops. Wars between factions. Shootings. Death. Friendships. Betrayals. It has it all and it was amazing. I am irrevocably in love with this series so far and you can bet once I type the last word in this review I'm picking up Insurgent, which is sitting right next to me, and you better not even think about disturbing me!
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on September 21, 2015
I was hooked onto this book from the very first sentence! It only took me about a day and a half to read through the whole thing! The character of Tris was someone that I could easily relate to! It seems like almost every dystopia book that comes out now has to be compared to The Hunger Games, and while I love the Hunger Games series... I love the Divergent series for so many OTHER reasons.

Tris (Beatrice) is born into a faction of Chicago called Abnegation - they are a selfless group and are supposed to be others before themselves. I found this hard to understand in some ways because I personally believe that we are all as humans just a tad selfish, and that's okay. While it's honorable to put others before yourself sometimes, I don't see the need to do it all the time. In this part of her history, I was able to relate to her. Tris never really bought into the whole selfless part of her family life.

At the age of 16 in this society, each teen is supposed to participate in the choosing ceremony - where you will choose which faction you are to remain a part of for the rest of your life. This ceremony comes right after the "aptitude test" they are required to take to help them decide which faction is right for them. (Belonging to more than one faction means you are Divergent.) She's of a small minority of people who are divergent, which eventually becomes a dangerous fact in her life. At the ceremony, Tris decides to join up with the Dauntless crowd - the military faction. They are a fearless and rowdy crowd. But it doesn't take long for her to fit in; to embrace and conquer her fears... she soon learns that her society is not all that she's been told to believe.

It's in Dauntless that she meets Four, who's name is a mere nickname based on the fears he has to overcome. It doesn't take long to realize that a slow-building romance begins between Tris and Four from the first day he meets her in the Pit!

This book has all that I love in a dystopian science fiction - strong heroine, lots of action, a good bit of romance, and an extremely flawed society. Although I wanted to hit Tris upside the head with her own book a few times!
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on May 12, 2016
Great book with great female lead who develops a strong sense of self, trust in her own decisions, and handles some really frightening issues with strength and resilience.

Cautions: Assault on a female with overtones of sexual assault. Although this is a very limited portion of the book, it is an important event. I appreciated how the author handled this and how she had the character react. Familial physical abuse is also discussed and continues to be a theme throughout the series. As should be expected in a dystopian story line, there is violence in this book including the death of several characters, severe injuries, use of guns and other weapons, and conflict. If you are worried if your child is too young to read this book, please read it first yourself before letting them.

Romantic relationship of lead characters: I enjoyed the fact that although these characters are obviously attracted to each other, they do not fall into the puppy love/lust relationships all too often seen in books marketed to a younger crowd. Throughout the series, this relationship is developed on multiple levels.
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on April 7, 2016
I thought this was a pretty good sequel to Divergent. I thought Insurgent went pretty smoothly and had no real issues. Tris was somewhat annoying in this one though. All her whining about the fact that she killed Will, even though she had no other real options at the time. Or the fact that she was willing to get herself killed because her parents had risked their lives for some unknown reason. Yet, she had no idea what the reason was until the very end.

One thing I couldn’t figure out, was why Tris was questioning Four as to why he beat Marcus up. Did she suddenly have amnesia and not remember what he did to Tobias when he was younger? Or maybe she forgot that a lot of the Dauntless members had been antagonizing Tobias because of his ‘cowardice’, due to the fact that he chose Dauntless to get away from his father?

Another aspect that I was lost on was how Tris seemed all eager to help Marcus. Huh? I thought she hated him? Apparently not that much. It was just very strange since she was willing to ruin her relationship with Tobias for his father.

Either way, I’ll be reading the next book in the series, Allegiant.
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on August 12, 2014
Beatrice Pryor lives in a post-apocalyptic world where people are classified into five factions and that is where they live, regardless of whether it is with their family. Everyone takes a test to see which group they fit into. Whether it is the peace-loving Amity, the protectors of Dauntless, the truth-tellers of Candor, the selfless and governing faction of Abnegation, or the smart people of Erudite, everyone must choose where they belong. Anyone can switch from the faction they were born into, but most don't. When Beatrice takes her test, her results are inconclusive; she is a Divergent. She doesn't conform to their mindset. The test doesn't work on a Divergent. And there are those who think they are very dangerous, and are out to contain and kill them all.
During the choosing ceremony, Beatrice's brother surprisingly chooses Erudite and she chooses Dauntless. But it doesn't take long for Tris (formerly Beatrice until changing her name when she chose Dauntless) to realize that she doesn't exactly belong in this faction either. It seems like there is nowhere she would exactly fit in like everyone else. And because she is weak, she is in danger of being cut from the initiation. Those that don't make the cut are factionless. To some, this is a fate worse than death. Four, an instructor, starts helping her, although Tris doesn't always realize it. He recognizes her potential and she soon starts rising in the ranks. However, this causes her to form enemies within the initiates. Some of them are ruthless and will do whatever it takes to keep their rankings and stay in Dauntless. Not only are some of the initiates ruthless, but some of the leaders as well. It seems that they have strayed from their original manifesto of "We believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another."
The further Tris gets into initiation, the more in danger she is. Not only from those jealous of her position, but those who hate her former faction. She will never completely conform. Four tries to help her all that he can, and the two of them start falling for each other. He has his secrets too. Secrets that will hit closer to home for Tris than she could ever imagine. But they are both strong, and they must uncover what the Erudite are up to before it is too late.

"Fear doesn't shut you down; it wakes you up. I've seen it. It's fascinating." He releases me but doesn't pull away, his hand grazing my jaw, my neck. "Sometimes I just...want to see it again. Want to see you awake."-Four

There is so much in this book that I could never cover all of it in a review of this book, so I didn't even try to. I only went over a small bit of it instead. I have to say that it was an excellent read! Beatrice Pryor just might be one of my new favorite heroines now. She becomes strong and brave. And she learns that being brave and being selfless are sometimes one and the same. Facing your fears doesn't always mean conquering them either. Sometimes they are always there. It's more about not letting the fear control you. So many big lessons in this book. Beatrice becomes Tris, strong and brave Tris. She also becomes a little harder and doesn't always help others like she would have in the past. This causes her some guilt, but it is something she learns from. You can only try to do better next time. You can't go back and undo what has been done. Survival in Dauntless is very hard and unforgiving.
And then there is Four. Four who has many secrets. Also Four who likes Tris. He is a hard and seemingly ruthless guy, but underneath it all he is just as human as the rest. He may be intimidating, but he wants the best for the initiates and drives them hard so they won't fail. Tris has a hard time deciding how he feels about her sometimes until Four makes it clear that it's not safe for people to know about their feelings for each other. Once she goes into his simulation, Tris understands his fears and just who Four really is.
As if it isn't hard enough to have to try to make it through initiation, Tris's entire faction is in danger because of the Erudites. They are trying to stir up trouble by releasing mostly false reports about the Abnegation withholding luxuries from everyone and how the whole faction is corrupt. But it will end in an explosive conflict that will leave you wanting more of this story!
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on May 12, 2016
Continuation of a dynamic and intense story line. In this one, the characters are facing a broadening of what they new to be true, faced with new realities and class prejudice on a new level. Characters continue to evolve, struggling with ideas of family duty, self sacrifice versus self annihilation, guilt, forgiveness, and strength.

Cautions: Familial physical abuse is also discussed and continues to be a theme throughout the series. As should be expected in a dystopian story line, there is violence in this book including the death of several characters, severe injuries, use of guns and other weapons, and conflict. If you are worried if your child is too young to read this book, please read it first yourself before letting them.

Romantic relationship of lead characters: I enjoyed the fact that although these characters are obviously attracted to each other, they do not fall into the puppy love/lust relationships all too often seen in books marketed to a younger crowd. Throughout the series, this relationship is developed on multiple levels.
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on March 31, 2014
Some spoilers ahead!

I'm torn. There were some things I liked about this book, but it also felt kind of anticlimactic. I was at least expecting a big epic battle to overthrow the whole system and government, especially after being disappointed when there was no epic factionless uprising. I mean, why aren't people more upset and generally PISSED OFF that their whole existence was monitored, that their whole lives and society were basically fake? Instead they just accept it. Other reviews mention several plot holes and factual errors concerning the genetics and I do agree with osme of them. Roth definitively should have done some more research in this area. As a result, there is a sort of unfinished and rushed feeling to the book.

One thing I did enjoy though, was the romance between Tris and Tobias. I was really rooting for them and so I was even more devastated when Tris died (I kept fearing for Tobias to die) and they never got to explore their relationship further in a (at least more) peaceful setting. Reading about Tobias' reaction and what followed was just heartbreaking.

That being said, to some extent I understand why she felt like she had to sacrifice herself. At the core of herself, all Tris really wanted in life was to make her parents proud of her and in the end she did. But it was also SO STUPID!!! There would have been plenty things she could have done in honour of her parents were she alive! More even. And also: never ever EVER DROP YOUR WEAPON IN THAT KIND OF SITUATION!! I mean, come on! Seriously!!

Then again, I guess it's more realistic and (this word comes difficultly, bitterly) better if the ending is not 100 % perfect with everyone surviving, being happy and generally deciding that even though they endured gut-wrenching, heartbreaking and mentally straining duress it was a good day all in all.

As a whole: I have mixed feelings.
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on January 7, 2015
There were things about the book that I loved (some scenes that weren't included in the movie), and things I didn't like (also not included in the movie...for good reason). I'd probably give it a 3.5 rating if I could. I watched the movie before reading this book and I was shocked when I actually liked the movie better...that doesn't usually happen with me. The sequence of events made more sense in the movie. Things sometimes didn't make any sense and seemed disjointed and inconsistent in the book. I also didn't really like the characters a lot of the times in the book. Four really did seem a bit sadistic (for example he said his first instinct is to push Tris until she breaks to see how hard he has to push...uh, aren't you supposed to like her and not want to break her down?), Christina and Will were terrible friends (I understand why the author wrote them that way, but I didn't like it) and even sometimes the things Tris did or thought had me questioning her intelligence (I also didn't even like her sometimes). The Script writer of the movie seemed to take the flavor of the book and the best things about it and turn it into a wonderful story. So I leave you with: the book is worth reading, but if you only do one, watch the movie.
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