On our bookshelf: “Divergent” by Veronica Roth


Tell me if this sounds familiar: An ordinary girl is bored with her life and wants a change. A big emotional/physical/life-changing event occurs, including said girl finding out she has a mysterious power. Enter a tall, good-looking, mysterious boy who changes girl’s life and makes it more interesting. Girl kisses said boy in an unexpected yet somehow romantic location.

Did I describe “Divergent” by Veronica Roth, or most young adult book series currently on bookshelves? You tell me.

“Divergent” tells the story of a sixteen-year-old girl named Beatrice “Tris” Prior who lives in a society split into five factions: Abnegation, Erudite, Dauntless, Amity, and Candor. Tris lives in Abnegation, the faction of the selfless, and is tired of her dull life.

At 16, all people take a placement test to see which faction they should spend the rest of their lives. Once they find out their results, they can choose to stay in the faction they grew up in, or transfer.

Tris chooses to transfer to Dauntless and meets Four, one of the mentors who changes her life and makes her a stronger and a more independent teenage girl (yawn). They end up (you guessed it) falling in love. They both go on to rebel against the system as the power couple.

The book is actually an interesting read. However, the plotline is pretty much the same as most young adult book series only in a different location with a different situation and different characters. Tris starts off as a boring, ordinary girl, but becomes strong and powerful as soon as the mysterious boy enters her life.

Veronica Roth’s writing style is definitely not one of my favorites. Other people will disagree with me when I say that it is somewhat bland. She had a good idea, with a society split into five factions, but her minimalist writing crosses the line from short and sweet to simple, boring, and non-descriptive.

I suggest that if you are interested in reading the series you do so because it does suck you in right away. However, if you were not planning on reading it or are just now hearing of it, you should wait for the movie opening in March. I know other people who read the book will disagree with me since it is a very popular series.

All in all, “Divergent” is a fine book that I look forward to seeing the movie adaption, but it has a tiresome and over-used plot line.