It is a very rare thing to witness the beginning of a writer’s career and know without a doubt that the first little book is going to launch a worldwide craze, a la J.K. Rowling or Stephenie Meyer. Such is the terrifying yet enviable position of Veronica Roth, who sold this debut novel to a HarperCollins imprint before she even finished college. She also sold the film rights to Summit Entertainment, owner of the Twilight film saga, on the strength of pre-publication buzz alone. The first in a planned series, Divergent is beyond question the best thing to happen to young adult literature in a very long time. More realistic than Harry Potter and less moony-eyed than Twilight, Roth has crafted a world and a protagonist that are easily engrossing and definitely worthy of our long-term attention.
Part of the credit for such charm belongs to narrator Emma Galvin, herself somewhat a newcomer. The young upstart has already garnered praise for her interpretations of Winter’s Bone, the first book spin-off from the Glee television series, and Stephenie Meyer’s recent novella. Galvin is genuinely edgy and emotive, not a trace of sugar to be found in the dialogue or her rendering of it. She captures the bold but conflicted spirit of the main character, Tris, with convincing personality and a real sensibility for the fast-pacing learning curve into which Tris launches the year she turns 16. After being raised in a clan whose primary characteristic is its devotion to selflessness, Tris defects, choosing a life of bravery from among the five factions that comprise her dystopic Chicago. She must pledge the faction, and go through several rounds of training eliminations before becoming a true Dauntless.
Tris is a complex, down-to-earth character with a lot of soul searching to do in a clan where hobbies include jumping from moving trains and tossing knives at small objects resting on the heads of friends, and there are no second chances. Veronica Roth has built a remarkable situation with strong potential for a longevity that will remain fresher than the sum of its parts, and Emma Galvin has this bull of a new series firmly by the horns. This book is confidently going places far beyond the fanatical mindlessness of young adult marketing, and in a hot minute, grownups will not have to feel one iota of shame for having fallen in love with it alongside their less discerning teenagers. Megan Volpert
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue - Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is - she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are - and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves.... or it might destroy her.
Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series - dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.
©2011 Veronica Roth (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers
"Though Galvin’s narration is concentrated on giving Tris the perfect voice, she never neglects the secondary characters. Poignant moments with Tris’s mother and Four, her leader and love, are subtly nuanced to let listeners hear the terror Tris often hides.... listeners will hold their breath waiting to see if she can survive the day." (AudioFile)
I could clearly see what was going on in the story as well as what everyone was feeling. Emma Galvin is a phenomenal narrator. I highly recommend this book. I am continuing on to book 2 "The Insurgent"
I wouldn't consider the audio edition better or worse, it's all a matter of preference and situation whether one reads or listens. I find I get through a book faster if I listen to it because I can multi-task. Depending on the narrator sometimes it's more enjoyable to read.
Hunger Games - young adult heroes and storyline set in the future.
Beatrice/Triss was the main character and you grow to care about her and her survival skills.
If you enjoyed Hunger Games and Twilight you will like the Divergent series.
Great way to read great books on the go. Love Sci Fi especially Orson Scott Card and Star Wars.
Divergent audio presentation sits about in the middle of performances. A good ready, no effects.
The choosing ceremony and the aftermath resonate with everyone who has had to make choices in their life.
Divergent, the Choice is Yours
An excellent start. Can't wait to read the rest.
I am a single, sixty year old woman who recently sold her home in the country, where I blissfully raised sheep and chickens. I am very intelligent, sensitive and emotional and I prefer books with these same qualities.
The premise of the story. (liked)
Obvious, immature "love story" (dislike)
There is really nothing "wrong" with the story. It is just written more at a youth level than that of an adult.
No. Other than I probably will NOT go see the movie.
I very much enjoyed "The Hunger Games" trilogy and thought this would be similar. Hunger Games was clearly written with a more mature audience in mind.
something about yourself!
I did enjoy this, although I had no idea what it would be about before I read it. I didn't read up anything about it prior to reading it. It was an enjoyable story though when i think back about what happened, I realized not much happened.
I would recommend the book to those who enjoy dystopian young adult literature. Given the genre, the premise of the story is mildly engaging; the young female lead has some endearing qualities, but I am growing tired of suppressed sexual angst along with squeezing the emotional lemon for every last drop.
For me, the most distracting mechanical aspect of the story is that it is written in present tense. I don't mind when present tense is used sparsely to emphasize action that is happening RIGHT NOW, but writing an entire book in present tense reminds me too much of illiterate young people who think everything is happening RIGHT NOW and overuse the form in their speech also.
The lead is basically the only character who is fully explored enough to give us much insight into her character and motive. Again, that is why I prefer a story told through an omniscient narrator, rather than through the episodic, distorted, tangled story from the viewpoint of a hyper-hormonal teen.
It is a movie; I will probably see it; not for the great story, but simply for a few minutes of entertainment.
The premise of the story (5 factions based on exaggerated character types) is a bit interesting, and there are some interesting developments as the plot progresses.
This is probably a 7 on a 1-10 scale. I listen to about 4 books a month of all different genres.
Yes, but definitely not an AMAZING read. I liked Red Rising quite a bit more. This is very similar to The Hunger Games which I liked as well. Once I was almost done with this book I strained to finish it-it held my interest the whole time till the last quarter and then it just became boring to me.
Her relationship with 4.
No, not that exciting but still a good story. Not as "edge" of your seat as I had hoped.
I loved the narrator, she did a fantastic job. The story was great too.
Without giving too much away, when the main character made her choice of which faction to join.
I really felt like her voice, her style and the way she read made me feel like she was Trice
If I could have, I definitely would have.
Fantastic easy listen.
Yes, it was a recommendation from a friend to me and I appreciate her for it.
Learning that all the factions have truth in today's world and everyday life.
Learning new things about someone you know well, shows that you can never know someone absolutely.
Yes, I am going to finish the other two books and then probably listen again.
When four saves Tris.
Her voice was just what I imagined Tris to sound like.
When Tris's mom died for her.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.