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 think Emma Galvin does a terrific job narrating, I found her pleasant and easy to listen to.
I picked up this audio book due to the high ratings and that I saw a movie trailer recently. I have to say all in all I'm very satisfied. The one drawback is it does have periods of teeny-girl love story, which as I later found out from my wife, is likely the intended audience for this piece. So, I suppose that's on me for not knowing that ahead of time.
All of that being said it's well written and engaging outside of the silly lovesick girl portions.
It was surprisingly good. Some reviews compared it to Hunger Games but it is not at all like it. I read to preview for my 6th grade class. Glad I did, because it does have some intense scenes that the younger readers may not relate to. I just started the next book in the series Insurgent!
I loved the entire series and would definitely read more of Veronica Roth writing and I don’t even like futuristic books but would recommend it
This was my first audio book, and, to be honest, its going to be extremely hard to compete!
I am not a reader--never have been. I could NOT put this book down. I finished it in less than 3 days and that was a new record for me, given how long the book is. I HIGHLY recommend it.
Divergent is almost Twilightish with the nagging heroine and coming of age. But that is where it stops.
It's a thought provoking book about the basic instincts of the human way of life. I wish there had been some background about how the whole scenario has begun, but you have to read other books for that. It is an interesting read and keeps you following not only the main characters but the sub characters as well.
I truly enjoyed the audio version. I travel 4 - 8 hours at least three times a month and I enjoy listening to audio books while driving. I was actually disappointed every time I had to stop and get out of the car.
i love to read an amazing book that will take me out of this world and bring me to another sometimes we just need to use our imagination!
yes because it is an adventure
the mother she is a strong women for raising kids in that kind of fraction
yes and i did
I found myself parked and sitting in my car not wanting to shut off the radio. The story is so well written, and I am looking forward to the next book.
My favorite character would have to be Four!
Emma's performance was great! I really enjoyed her ability to switch from character to character and to add little things like muffle her speech when a character was speaking with food in their mouth.
For sure this was a book I wanted to listen to in one sitting. However; I work in a max security prison, and sitting in the parking lot listening to this book did get me questioned on several occasions.
AKA King Caspian II of Veritasia. (507) 344-0981
Divergent is one of those books definitely worth a second listen, as the listener will catch things not noticed the first time.
The ending struck just the right note with me, Clear character growth, drama, more to come, hope in the middle of dystopian despair. Details, of course, are left to the individual listener to find out.
The book held my interest from beginning to end, not always easy to do.
There was a particular intervention between Tris and one of her new friends. Again, I can't give specific details because I don't believe in leaving spoilers.
Rated PG-13+ for mature and sometimes violent themes. Brief but respectful mention of religious practices is particularly noted in this book.
Avid reader all of my life! Favorite author: Stephen King. Favorite book: Hyperion.
Twilight, Hunger Games, The Host.....Divergent. I think these are stories being retold in different forms and shapes. The story is interesting enough and the writing is well done. Emma Galvin is a convincing Tris. But I found it hard to believe that the society would so segregate people into such factions. I just never quite bought into that concept. The level of violence certainly surprised me in some parts of the story. Just not sure the book is good enough to make me want to continue the series.
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