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Divergent | [Veronica Roth]

Divergent

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.
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Audible Editor Reviews

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

Publisher's Summary

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

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    Nel New Jersey 12-18-12
    Nel New Jersey 12-18-12
    ratings
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    20
    1
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    Story
    "It was just OK"

    Seeing all the flowing reviews I decide to give this a try. While the story was interesting enough to keep my attention most of the way, I felt that Tris and her relationship with Four was a bit juvenile. And the dialogue being laughable at times. But I will probably keep reading on to the next book hoping that it will get better, because there is potential here.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristi United States 12-17-12
    Kristi United States 12-17-12 Member Since 2011
    ratings
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    61
    12
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    Performance
    Story
    "Very interesting"
    Would you listen to Divergent again? Why?

    I thought this book was very interesting, slow at first, but had to keep listening at the end.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    after it got started then yes.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 12-15-12
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 12-15-12 Member Since 2010

    MTF

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A cross between Hunger Games and Enders Game"

    One of the reviews of this story said it was a cross between Enders Game and The Hunger Games. That is so true. This is the tale of a teenage girl in a world where all people try to become accepted by a "faction" (or end out as the dreaded factionless). It is well written with a good main character trying to make the cut as "Dauntless" in the elaborate initiation rites. As a middle aged adult, this felt a little too familiar to me. I also felt that very few of the characters came alive outside of Tris, the heroine of the story. Still, the world and story were interesting enough for me to stay with it, and I did enjoy much of the novel. I think this might be better received by younger readers, as my 20 year-old son and many of my high school students loved this. I liked the mystery of trying to figure out what was behind the political system and intrigue. The reader was great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    talia Short hills, NJ, United States 12-14-12
    talia Short hills, NJ, United States 12-14-12 Member Since 2012
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    3
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    "great read."
    What other book might you compare Divergent to and why?

    The Hunger Games and Harry Potter series


    What does Emma Galvin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Her voice personifies Tris to perfection.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I just loved listening .


    Any additional comments?

    An exciting narrative, a great premise and an excellent narration. Highly recommend it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Lakewood, CO, United States 12-12-12
    Mark Lakewood, CO, United States 12-12-12 Member Since 2011

    I spend 90+ minutes a day in my car, Audible makes it enjoyable regardless of what's happening in traffic. My taste varies from endurance fitness to economics and from to combat stories and romance novels.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not even close to the Hunger Games"

    I'll admit, I wouldn't have even thought about picking this book a year ago before I read The Hunger Games, but I enjoyed that series so much I decided to give myself a little more latitude in my selections and be open to other genres. So in reading this book I had a pretty high bar to compare it to, rating the Hunger Games as a solid 5/5. And while I've heard a movie deal is in the works, I won't be completing the trilogy and I'll be waiting for the movie to see how the story ends.

    The strengths--Interesting story line, develops fairly logically, easy to get into the idea (a dystopian Chicago of the future), and lead character is likable.

    The weaknesses--I really wanted a lot more from this story than the author could deliver. While some characters are richly developed, others shut me down as their multi-dimensionality is unrealistic and hard to believe. The author's scene descriptions aren't vivid enough for me and don't have the depth and texture I need to be drawn in to the setting. The descriptions of pain and challenge by the lead character didn't work for me. I wish I could do a better job pulling up examples, but I can't; I can just say that I was disappointed in the writing around how she described the sensations and it kept me from really getting sucked in. I need more texture.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LadyDucayn@aol.com 12-12-12 Member Since 2012

    For background, my favorite authors are George R. R. Martin, Robin Hobb, Jacqueline Carey, Ken Follett, Bernard Cornwell, Kevin Hearne, Jim Butcher and Margaret George.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An interesting dystopian YA story"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, it was an interesting listen that left you wanting to know more.


    What other book might you compare Divergent to and why?

    I would put it in the same category as Hunger Games because it is a futuristic take on what happens after society has been re-envisioned after some disaster or another.


    What about Emma Galvin’s performance did you like?

    Her voice was not distracting and kept me easily in the story.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes it was but obviously I did not.


    Any additional comments?

    I enjoyed the story just as much as I liked Hunger Games.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Candace Calgary, AB, Canada 12-11-12
    Candace Calgary, AB, Canada 12-11-12 Member Since 2012
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    11
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    "Good Mature Student read"
    If you could sum up Divergent in three words, what would they be?

    Dystopian, teenage angst


    Would you be willing to try another book from Veronica Roth? Why or why not?

    Yes. Ordered the next in the series as I like to read an entire series.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Not sure


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Not sure


    Any additional comments?

    Good for teens that have more worldly experiences and mature mindset.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paula 12-11-12
    Paula 12-11-12
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    2
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    "A good dystopia knockoff."
    Where does Divergent rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Divergent is in the top 25 of my audio reads.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Four was my favorite character. I liked his take-charge attitude.


    What aspect of Emma Galvin’s performance would you have changed?

    Voice was not strong enough for this story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Criss United States 12-05-12
    Criss United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2011
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    30
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    "Awesome"
    If you could sum up Divergent in three words, what would they be?

    My three words will be, OMG!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Divergent?

    All the scenes with the mind control simulations. They were so intense, I could not tell if what they were seeing was real or not. How much can the "divergent" control the simulations.


    What about Emma Galvin’s performance did you like?

    All of it. I can tell who was talking before they were mentioned.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    What's your faction?


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly 12-05-12
    Kimberly 12-05-12

    Burly Jon

    ratings
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    "Excellent book"
    What made the experience of listening to Divergent the most enjoyable?

    The reader was wonderful.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The story was interesting and kept me hooked.


    What does Emma Galvin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    She brings the character alive. She had the perfect voice for the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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