Thursday, 17 July 2014

'All is well and all is good...'

Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth (spoiler alert!)

I can't believe I actually read this book. It's one of those that there's so much hype about I generally avoid like the plague, and it's a dystopian YA, which is generally not my favourite genre (right word?) as I can always pick a million holes in the setup and begin to annoy even myself. 

And yes, I could pick holes in this. Why does no-one wonder what's outside of the city? Why does Tris not know who Four is instantly when they must have grown up together in Abnegation? How did Tris survive so long without causing trouble in Abnegation when she seems so frustrated? And why do they only have a day between the Aptitude Test and the Choosing Ceremony? Surely that isn't enough? The world was very flawed, and whilst I have read reviews that say that these problems are the point of the whole series, it did seem slightly unbelievable. However it was a great read, I found myself thoroughly entertained and wanting to know more about Tris and her world. 

I didn't always like Tris but I do like that she's flawed. When she killed (spoiler!) Will I was like whaaat, she just said that she was glad she shot Eric in the foot and not the head, and now she's killing someone because they're after her? Why didn't she shoot Will in the foot as well? Her confusing choices do make her character more interesting and real, and also remind the reader that she is supposed to be only 16. 

I also admire Veronica Roth. She wrote this in college, got it published, wrote the two sequels and got a film deal. And she's what, 25? If I could achieve this by that age I would feel extremely lucky and talented. Yes, it's not always a perfect read, sometimes it's cheesily written and sections are too short and snappy and not at all developed, but Roth obviously has a great imagination and the will to follow through with the world which she has created. Also, props to her for not making the romance the centre of the story, which is quite refreshing.

What was it about? Growing up and making hard choices, but the right ones for you. 
Would I recommend? Yes, it's an entertaining page-turner, and the characters are interesting. 

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