'Divergent' by Veronica Roth is a dystopian young adult novel that describes a society broken down into five factions. Each of these factions represents a certain virtue: Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). When a teenager turns 16, they must select a faction to live with, even if it is different from the one they are born into. For Beatrice, this was life changing. Each faction has a grueling initiation, which can either result in death or the possibility of the individual to become what is called factionless. Becoming factionless results in their becoming outcasts from the other factions and leaving them very much alone.
Beatrice, who re-names herself Tris in her new faction, begins to learn new things about herself and who she really is. Conflict eventually becomes inevitable and Tris finds strength she didn’t know she has to overcome.
Divergent is quite reminiscent of 'Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins. Each book has a ceremony that puts their young people into difficult situations. In ‘Hunger Games,’ the children are sent to a death game; however, in ‘Divergent’ death is not quite as inevitable. However, the extreme situations that the teens are cast into can cost them their lives.
This book has a slow start but picks up speed almost right away. Once you get involved in the storyline, you won’t be able to put it down. There is a minor love story in the novel that is very well written, and carries the story to an obviously unfinished ending. Although it is not a cliffhanger, it is clear that there is another book to follow.
The characters are well developed, the storyline is full of action and suspense, and the romance is moving and touching. I give this book five out of five stars and highly recommend it for young adult readers as well as anyone else who likes a good read. I can’t wait to get to the second book, 'Insurgent.' It is already in my Kindle.