The Divergent Trilogy, based on the two books that have been released, takes place in futuristic dystopian Chicago where people live within five different parts of the city based on which “faction” they have been assigned: Abnegation, Dauntless, Candor, Erudite, and Amity. Each of these factions specialize in a particular talent (like selflessness, bravery, honesty, intellectual study, and peacefulness) and all five work together to maintain a steadfast society.
When residents turn sixteen they go to a Choosing Ceremony where they decide, based on tests, which faction they will go to. It is the hope of parents that their offspring will remain within the fraction they have been raised because usually those who choose differently will no longer have contact with their family. God help them if an individual has test results which show their talents can possibly belong to more than one faction because that means they are divergent.
Written by Veronica Roth, the novels have a fast pace and in many ways resemble The Hunger Games. I felt that the storylines and plot twists were different enough that the books didn’t feel as if I was reading about the further adventures of Katniss Everdeen, yet they were similar enough that if a reader enjoyed Hunger they would like these novels as well.
Beatrice Prior, or Tris as she is later known, is very much an Everdeen type of character but thankfully there is no love triangle within Divergent’s pages. There is however a love story that at times feels a bit off. As I was reading I became perplexed as to how Tris did not know who Four (that’s lover boy’s name) was. It is later revealed that he is only a few years older than her and her father worked for his and their families socialized, but this is a minor quibble.
I recommend Divergent and its sequel Insurgent if you are looking for quick reads as the weather becomes cooler. Allegiant, the next book in the series, comes out October 22nd and a movie based on the first book is set to be released in March of 2014. As a series of novels geared toward the young adult market they are more fun than flawed. Thank you for all of those who recommended these novels to me!