I had a had time getting into the story and the narrator's performance, but once I did, after 4 hours or so, I couldn't stop anymore! I really identified to the main character, that makes it easier I guess. Besides, as the story goes on, it became clearer to me what Roth's point was and how complicated the story arcs actually were. As simplistic as it may have seemed to me at the begining, it turned out to be breathtaking and pretty intense! Can't wait to hear the rest of it.
I have not read YA fantasy since a couple of years, but I am happy I gave it a try. I want to know what the rest of the trilogy holds in store for me!
Yes! As much as the book fits into the classics of the dystopian-genre, the "houses" (factions) are presented in an original way. Behind being trainees in a badass basement, it deals with the idea of community, society, peace and power. Cool themes!
I disliked it at first, and to be honest, I'm still not very fond of Emma Galvin's style. her reading tone is not very entertaining... After a while though, I managed to identify the main character to her voice, so the story eventually became enjoyable.
I love Audible!
I really did enjoy this book and the performance, but it wasn't something I could listen to all at once.
Divergent takes place in a dystopian future where society has been divided into "factions" based on different personality traits. To make the ubiquitous Hunger Games comparison, this separation is society's response to some devastating unknown past war. Each faction fulfills a specific role in this new society based on its inherent strengths, but this specialization also inhibits any one faction from gaining too much power or influence.
I found this to be a unique enough premise for a good story. Unfortunately the story itself just didn't cut it for me, and I'm sorry to say this is the first book in a long time that I couldn't get myself to finish. I've got about an hour left, and I figure that's enough of the book that I'm qualified to write a review. Mild spoilers following, but nothing you won't find in a standard synopsis.
The World -
The world is the strongest aspect of the book, and I wish we saw more of it. We get a peek at a few of the factions and how they interact together in the adult world, and it's chilling to see a world based around the brainwashing and indoctrination of each of the factions, most of all the society's insistence on "faction over blood." It also makes for some very straightforward characters, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. It was a little weird that half the story emphasizes chalkboards and cars and guns and bunk beds, while the other introduces all this crazy hand-wavy neuro-nano-technology. You'd think that some of that would spill out into the characters' daily futuristic lives...
The Characters -
I actually liked the various "transfer" characters we meet from the different factions. They obviously bring their different faction-enforced traits to the table, but they also each struggle with adapting to the new faction they've transferred into, and this gives them the depth they need to be unique, likable, and a good patchwork of classmates for our heroine Trice. The classic trio of cruel classmate bullies were a little stale, but it wouldn't be much of a YA novel without them!
The Heroine -
Trice, unfortunately, wasn't a very compelling lead in my opinion. She grapples with her place in the world, and having to choose between her faction and her family, but other than that she's either inexplicably good at everything, or her goals are changing at random and we end up losing site of her character development. Her steamy illicit relationship does NOT help the situation, and as much as I can respect and enjoy the butterflies of a teenage girl's first romance, it totally takes over the second half of the book, pushing aside any thinly enforced urgency the book had going at that point. It just lacks all the subtlety and conflict and dire context that made the love triangle in the Hunger Games so interesting.
The Writing -
I think more than anything it's the writing that got to me. The story is very much "told" rather than "shown," which made Roth's creative new world lack depth and imagery. The story itself also just didn't have much push behind it. We know there's this greater impending change happening, but the story, and our heroine, are so engrossed in their immediate stepping-stone conflicts, that they lose site of what their actions are for altogether.
The Narrator -
Emma Galvin is a definite redeeming factor in the audiobook version of this novel. Her voice is clear and convincing, she totally sounds the part of our 16 year old Trice, her character voices are distinct and believable, and she was just all around a pleasure to listen to. She did hit a couple pet peeves though - her "can"s come out as "ken", which just drives me up the walls, and I swear there's not a contraction in the entire freaking book, which makes all of Trice's inner dialogue sound forced and robotic, though I guess that's more Roth than Galvin.
The Take-Away -
I loved the first Hunger Games book. If you liked the entire series, you may find Divergent really enjoyable read - you get a lot of the action, romance, dystopia, rebellion, and friendship that Hunger Games had to offer. But I personally thought the second and third books of the Hunger Games books went spiraling uncontrollably downhill, and that's how I felt before I even finished Divergent. Then again, maybe I'm making a huge mistake and it's the opposite of the Hunger Games, and Trice's story really takes off after the first book. Sadly, if that's the case, there's just not enough in Divergent to keep me hooked. Maybe the movie will be better.
Will read (or in this case, listen) to just about anything.
I always find dystopias interesting. The plot was great for the most part though the ending was a bit too perfect - written more for a movie finish (it's due out March 2013, big surprise). Still, enjoyable overall.
Im a 39 year old self employed female who does a lot of driving and audiobooks make driving enjoyable for me. I enjoy conteporary and historical fiction as well as fun comedic romances.
yes my kids have listened several times , they enjoy the story
Tris or Four are favourite characters, it is a toss up. They are both memorable in their own way.
What would you choose?
Great listen. highly recommend if you have teens who like to listen in the car with you, we were all able to enjoy this with the exception of one borderline inappropriate scene.
I listened up to chapter 10. I just couldn't get into the story. The violence between the characters was bothersome. I figured it would just get worse as the story progressed so I opted to return it and move on to something more my style. The narration was pretty monotonous, but that could be related to the depressing back drop of the setting. However if you liked Hunger Games you may like this story as there are strong similarities between the two books.
I love the strength of the female character!
Insurgent because that's the next book in the series.
She is crazy talented! My favorite of all time!
Yes! Love when she jumps first!
Must buy this!
Yes, I liked the book overall except it was slow going. Once it started to roll I got into it and decided that I had to continue with the next book. It did leave me wanting more.
I liked the narrator, she did a very good, I liked her voice.she did the parts great. I didn't like the he said, she said parts, I could follow with out that.
Yes, she let it open to all kinds of things to happen!
Good book other than a slow start I did enjoy it, I have purchased the others in the series
This series is great! I love it just as much if not a little more than the hunger games. As an adult I sometimes feel silly that I enjoy YA lit so much but with books like this I don't care. It has an entertaining plot and characters. The narration is very good.