Book review, “Divergent”

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In the series “Divergent,” by Veronica Roth,  you’ll go on a daring adventure, full of love, death, and a fight for what is right. It is an emotional roller coaster, where you are constantly trying to figure out, what’s right and wrong, and who’s good or bad. You’ll discover discrimination, and the fight to destroy it. You’ll learn the true meaning of bravery, courage, love, loyalty, and family. You’ll watch the characters struggle, and you will struggle with them because the whole series seems too real. You’ll cry with them. You’ll laugh with them. And part of you will die with them. These characters become you, and and whether you belong in peaceful Amity, intelligent Erudite, brave Dauntless, selfless Abnegation, honest Candor, or Divergent itself, you won’t look at things the same way after reading this series.

The first book, “Divergent”, was published on April 5, 2011. Roth wrote the first novel in college. She started the books from the point of view of the character “Four” but decided she didn’t like it. Four years later, the character Beatrice was discovered. Roth decided she was the protagonist and started writing.

She got the idea for the factor “Dauntless” from a song called “Sweet Sacrifice” by Evanescence. She wasn’t fond of the song, but she listened to it any way. One line in particular stood out. It said “fear is only in our minds. but it’s taking over all the time.” She got a picture in her head of someone jumping of a roof to prove their bravery. That idea was then incorporated into the book, by being the one of the first tests for Dauntless.

Roth has always been interested in division of groups. That’s why she decided to divide the world into sections, called factions. The idea for Beatrice came because Roth always wanted to write a character with a lot of thoughts, but few words. Suddenly she appeared — smart and somewhat humorless.

Beatrice Prior, is independent and doesn’t feel she belongs in Abnegation, the faction who gives a home to people that are defined by the word selfless. At 16,  Beatrice goes through a simulation, that will determine what faction she belongs in. Beatrice’s results show she is Divergent — something that is shameful in their culture. When the day of the Choosing Ceremony comes for Beatrice, she chooses Dauntless, those defined by brave, hiding her true self.

In Dauntless, Beatrice is put through tests and training, along with the other transfers, to see if they belong. The first test is to jump onto a moving train that will take everyone to the Dauntless headquarters. Beatrice quickly earns the title, “the first jumper” because she was the first to perform the second test of Dauntless, which was to jump off a building. A first jumper from Abnegation is unheard of. At this moment, she decides to go by Tris. Tris’s glory quickly wears off though, as the new Dauntless initiates excel in training. A cruel Candor transfer, Peter, uses sabotage to be the best, and an arrogant, tight-fisted instructor chooses favorites, and pushes them harder than anyone thought possible. These people will stop at nothing to be the best, and they will destroy anything in their path.

Despite the harsh training, and bloody competitions, Tris manages to find friends, and she has her eyes set on a guy. She throws all she has into training, and her effort pays off. But then something happens, and nothing is what it seems.

Some characters die, and others only die internally. Every page holds unimaginable things and complex characters. You will always be thinking, and all the simulations will leave you wondering what’s real or not. One thing is for sure though, once you enter Beatrice Prior’s life, you never want leave.