Thursday, September 6, 2012
The world of Divergent was absolutely fascinating to me. The social structure was split into five different factions, and the factionless. The factionless were essentially the homeless. Each faction has a role in the society that plays upon their strengths. Now the five factions each had a strong trait to them and when the youths reach age sixteen, they get to chose their faction. Until they are sixteen though, they stay with the faction they are born into and learn that faction's ways. Some stay in the same faction, others move onto different factions. There's also a test that is administered to help the candidate discover what faction they belong to. The tests almost always indicate one faction.
That is, unless they're divergent.
Beatrice Prior who later dubs herself as 'Tris' is such an excellent character to navigate this world with because with each choice she faces, there's no clear option. She weighs her decisions carefully and starts to figure out long-term what is really going on with her world. However, the thing I enjoyed the most about her character is that she would logically analyze each choice, yet still throw herself to the wind. There was an unstable balance of emotion vs logic and it was gripping. I enjoyed that the character was not rendered indecisive, but rather wise yet still retaining a young voice.
There's also a colorful cast of characters submerged into the world and there are elements of romance, a strong connection of friendship/family, and an interesting curiosity held by the world itself. I also found it curious that there seemed to be quite a few hints that this world was a post apocalyptic one of today as it seems to take place in a broken Chicago.
I also loved seeing Beatrice turn into Tris; it was like watching a caterpillar that struggled with wanting something more and finally taking a chance to get more turn into a fierce lion.
It's action packed, gripping, and I immediately picked up the sequel, Insurgent, as soon as I could. From my understanding Divergent is the first one in a trilogy. I'm already halfway through Insurgent, and it doesn't disappoint.