Insurgent picks up right where Divergent left off and provides more insight into the factions and the dystopian society in which they exist. This time around Amity and Erudite are revealed in more detail and I found that to be the better part of the book. Each faction has a unique flavor and viewpoint of the overall society and the relationship between them all keeps things interesting.
I can't say the same for the relationship between Tris and Four. Their back and forth relationship is just not that interesting and Tris herself is a far weaker character this time around. Her constant self-doubt becomes tiring and Roth could have cut out a good 30+ minutes of repetition and it wouldn't really have changed the fundamental story at all.
This book sets up and delivers a big reveal at the end that points to a finale that will likely be very different from where the series started. That could either be a good thing or cause the series to "jump the shark." Based on the reviews I see for book 3, and from what I have heard from my friends, the latter seems to be the case.
So pick this one up at your own risk; it is a solid story but not quite as good as book one. The biggest downside to book two is that it leaves you facing a tough call when it comes to book three. For myself, I will listen to Allegiant at some point but I'm not enthusiastic enough about it to do so right now.
I really enjoyed the first book. I found the Factions the Initiations and the beginning of the war very engrossing. I was OK with the teen relationship and I found Tris to be mostly relatable and found her strength and fearlessness to be engaging. In this book, having made it only halfway through, I want to tell her to get over it all. Her guilt, her self-doubt, her lack of self-esteem...she seems to go on and on. And I find it difficult to determine whether Tris is talking or thinking to herself due to the narration.
I find myself not emotionally invested in Tris with this book and wanted it to delve into the war and the differing factions. A little bit of Tris and her feelings would be fine. Add a little bit of Four into the mix and I am good. But Tris’s emotions are examined ad nauseam. I have listened to about a third of this book and so little actually happens except some running around, visiting factions, and over-examining Tris’s emotions. I expected more but all I got was a whole bunch of teenage strife! I guess that is what you get when you are a middle-age adult reading a book meant for young adults. (Although I didn’t feel this way when I read the Hunger Games.)
Disappointed …. Now to find a grown-up book!
The narration is very good in the book and the appeal that the reader gave to the different characters kept my interest more than the story did. The author is not a bad writer- she does well with dialog and has some interesting ideas. But the actual story was lacking for me. Many things that were supposed to be big 'reveals' were so blatantly obvious from the beginning that it was just annoying to sit through. This book takes place immediately after the first one, but what I had hoped were just 'first novel' mistakes kept happening here. Tris continues to do things that are so just dumb, that I lost interest in her as a character. It isn't a terrible book, but I think it could have been a much better one.
This is just plain, good story telling. There's a little less gushy teen hand-holding and lovey-dovey stuff in this, the second book. Which made me happy. I would have been even happier if this had been released, not as a trilogy, but as one long book. But I guess trilogies are all the rage these days. I can't believe the author is just 23. There's talent there. Hey, Veronica, finish the third book soon, please. Your closeted 50-year-old white male fan is waiting.
I'm not sure why the author tried so hard to make Tris so wishy washy and create exaggerated drama. I bought this book in order to see where she would go with the story and I found out it was a teenage angst melodrama.
Much of the book seems to be a stream of conscious which is confusing to know when Tris is speaking versus carrying a conversation in her own head.
I'll finish the book but avoid the third installment.
Doubtful. the writing leaves me lacking for more.
Struggled for depth
I am an adult who loves a good YA read---but really I just love an engrossing story. If it pulls me in and I can't stop reading-I'm happy!
In full disclosure, I’ll start off by saying that I love Divergent. I love Tris. I love Four. In my review of Divergent I raised some things that didn’t sit right with me—but, having listened to Insurgent all of my questions/issues were addressed. And while, I can’t change my initial reaction to Divergent---Insurgent has made me love it more and in our trilogy-centric YA world I think that’s a major feat. That being said, I am still reeling a bit by the reveal at the end and if I struggle to find the words I hope you will forgive.
The story picks up literally where we left Tris and gang---and follows them through several different areas. This really helped to flush out the world even more. I loved being able to see the inner workings of different factions. I do not want to give away anything but let’s just say (while I consider myself a truthful person) I do not want to EVER live in Candor.
Tris is much more vulnerable now... deeply affected by losing her parents and wading through the guilt of Will. This story is painful and contains twists and turns that I did not anticipate… betrayal and assistance where I didn’t expect it. And that end… I'm going to start listen to them both again and again... I know it.
Tris and Four… uh! Thank you Veronica Roth… for creating this relationship. Thank you for NOT (can you believe it) giving us a triangle. Thank you for your amazing and realistic dialogue. I… I really am at a loss for words to describe how satisfied I am. And anxious too.
I am in awe of Emma Galvin’s talent. The emotions she brings only enhance the super intense moments. I think her performance was amazingly spot-on.
This is a killer sequel. I am satisfied in a way that I haven’t been in awhile. I am SUPER stoked for the next one. I am also dreading the next one because that will mean the end…
I seem to be in the minority.... but I didn't enjoy this one nearly as much as Divergent. Maybe my expectations were too high. I found my mind wandering a lot instead of really being engaged. I felt like Tris was bouncing around from one faction to another and, instead of uncovering some of the details of the factions and world building, it felt confusing and disjointed. I also was baffled by the reactions of all the factions in light of what happened at the end of Divergent. As a reader I suppose I just accept it and move on but I found the decisions to be distracting and frustrating.
On a pickier note, there are a lot of side stories going on with characters we are supposed to remember... but I didn't. I'll admit that I'm pretty bad with names but typically authors give us some clues as to who these people are. They didn't leave enough of an impact in Divergent for me to remember all of their names. The beginning of the book was very confusing for me because I could not remember who these people were. I had to go back to Divergent because there were no contextual clues at all.
Short, Simple, No Spoilers
On the run and searching for answers, Tris and Tobias explore other factions in this dull, formulaic sequel. The movie was well done, suspenseful, casting was spot-on perfect, and the director took the time to introduce and explore the characters' personalities. Against my better judgment, I downloaded book two to keep the story going. Since I didn't love book one, don't know why I thought book two would be better (although Emma Galvin is excellent).Don't spend your credit, wait the 11 months for the next film.
Divergent moved along nicely and had an interesting concept. Unfortunately Insurgent is simply not that good (and if you read reviews for the last book in the series, you will see it only gets worse). Insurgent is just a cast of characters moving from place to place with the same result - needing to fight their way out of the situation only to move on to other. There's really no story, it's like one of those action movies with a lot of car chases and crashes. I lost interest 2/3rds through and just moved on.
I'm an Audible editor, and I think this quote sums it up: "A voice is such a deep, personal reflection of character." - Daniel Day-Lewis
While I found Insurgent to be an overall enjoyable experience, I think it ultimately suffers from Middle Book Syndrome – the trap a lot of #2-in-a-series books fall into. There’s a lot of moving pieces around the board without much consequence, which allows the author to save the fireworks for the finale. Our heroine, Tris, sheds a lot of what made her such a unique and compelling character in the first book (her independence, her decisiveness, her straightforward approach to problem solving) and spends most of the time wondering what her on-again, off-again, brainwashed-again boyfriend is thinking about her and their relationship. There are some pretty decent main-story-arc reveals throughout, which keep the plot twisting and turning satisfactorily, and narrator Emma Galvin again does a fine job, but apart from a rather surprising and intriguing final chapter, the book didn’t hit the high notes of its predecessor. I do feel invested enough to see how it all pans out in the final book.