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 can't say this book is comparable to The Hunger Games series. This book was okay, but I was not enthralled listening to this book. It didn't make me want to jump up and read the next one. The last three-fourths of the book were the best. I will listen to the next one, but it is still not as good as The Hunger Games!
As an adult, I find myself reading more and more young adult books for a fresh perspective on strong female characters. Tris does not disappoint!
Of course this series is comparable to The Hunger Games and a little bit The Mortal Instruments. I really enjoyed The Hunger Games... I LOVED Divergent.
Emma's voice captivated me from the start. A quiet, forceful voice the sends shivers up my spine, tears to my eyes, and longing in my heart. I'm definitely going to look for other books she narrates.
Absolutely! I have the terrible habit of flipping to the last page of a book to see what happens. Can't really do that with an audio book. It was 2:00 in the morning when I finished Divergent and I immediately poured another cup of coffee and began listening to the second book of the trilogy... Insurgent.
I'm a new audible customer. I purchased the Divergent trilogy because of the 25% off sale and I can't tell you how happy I am with the purchase. I've told many people about the book and the narrator and hope to get more people to envelope themselves in Tris's world!
the story was so well written.. Roth drew me in from the first paragraph and kept me mesmorized till the last.
the dystopian world Roth created
When Al tried to apologized for almost killing Tris. Galvin narrated to emotions of the scene perfectly.
Loved the whole series and highly recommend. Galvin was perfect as narrator. If you like Galvin try Kresley Cole "Poison Princess" also a Dystopian world and Galvin is great.
I have 4 Audible accounts and my wife thinks I may have a problem.
An interesting idea but I feel like I was watching an episode of Dawson's Creek. I have never seen an episode of Dawson's Creek but I imagine it would be something like this in a Utopian setting... Really I couldn't finish it. Sad because I really enjoyed the Hunger Games and was looking forward to something as good.
Mother. Artistic. Dreamer. Loves fiercely.
What I love most about Divergent is, much like the title, the story is definitely different from what is "in" right now. It reminds me a little bit of "Hunger Games" yet I feel like the story of Divergent is entirely in a league of its own. It takes place in a dystopian city that is separated into factions each with it's own specific roles to play in society as well as separated types of personalities. I think it's interesting to see the process in which one chooses to stay or leave that society and undergo and/or survive the "initiation process" that follows after.
Similar to "Hunger Games" because of the brutal survival of the initiate process and separation of "factions". However, "Divergent" is completely on a different level.
I think Galvin captures the performance of Beatrice exactly how I'd imagine her character to be. Galvin also isn't monotone and delivers her performance in such a way that enables the reader to differentiate dialogue between characters.
No I wasnt crazy about the writing
Her first jump off the building.
Its a great story and concept. However I really disliked the writing itself. In defense of the author I had just read an amazing book by Diane Setterfield who is eloquent and clever then dove into Divergent in its wake for book club. It felt very much like young adult fiction in every way. I'm sure I will finish the series someday, but I am in no rush.
Definitely! If you love dystopian style books as much as I do, you'll really love the way the author takes you to a different world.
I loved to unexpected variety of it. There's a surprise around every corner!
That's a secret I'll never tell...
I definitely cried at the end of the book when everyone started dying and during the scene where the power of love was the strongest force imaginable.
I am so excited to read the next book in the series and to see the movie adaptation!
I remember the first time I listened to Emma as a reader. I wasn't quite sure I liked her. This is my second time listening to this series and its smoother this time. I think because I listen to a lot of different readers, sometimes it's hard to let one go and adapt to a new one. Emma has done a GREAT job!!
I loved the main character and her shy but vicious personality.
Her narration was okay.
Nothing that I can think of. I wanted to love it. I expected to love it. Alas, I hated it. I forced myself to finish it just hoping to reach the thing that would make me say "OH!!!" That never happened. The story didn't make sense to me. Hunger Games is a far superior book.
A friend who recommended this book has read the entire series and gave me spoilers. It seems to me that what happens in subsequent books make events in this one more understandable but I don't think I will read 3 books in order to like the first one. If I don't care about the characters in the first book that's it for me.
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