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)
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It was well performed and really immerses you in the story. That said there are a few lines from time to time that pull you out and remind you the book is being read to you. Whether that's the performance of the reader or the writing I can't say.
Being my first Audible story I don't know if I can attribute my liking of this novel more because of the fact that I listened to it or if it's solely because of the writing. I do feel that you can feel for the characters. In two sad parts I actually just about cried and could feel tears trying to escape my face. That doesn't happen often at all. In fact I've never had tears while reading but you feel apart of the story quickly when listening to it.
Both Tris and Four. They seem like great characters. Tris brother, although only a part of the story for short periods of time, was also interesting.
I wish I could have listened to it all in one sitting. I breezed through it in four days or so and couldn't wait to get to the end because I was enjoying the story so much. In fact I used my other credit this month for Insurgent and will begin it as soon as I finish this review. Speaking of...
I enjoyed Ender Game, Game of Thrones, and Star Wars. I didn't enjoy Twilight, Hunger Games, or this book if that gives you any idea.
Ending was fine.
This was the first book I've listened to with a total female narrator, but she did a good job.
Yes. No idea, I don't keep up with that type of news.
This wasn't a bad book, nor was it great. I might read the next one, haven't decided yet. If you enjoyed Hunger Games or Twilight, this book might be for you. Regardless, I would recommend you read it, then decide whether or not you want to finish the series.
This book is a fun and interesting enough book. Definitely intended for young adults, but if you like Hunger Games, for the story, then you should like this book.
Definitely, from the beginning to the end I could not stop listening.
The factor initiation.
No, but she was an excellent narrator.
In love with audio books!
Enticing grabbing deep
when Tris went through Tobias's fear landscape with him and help him through it; the fairest wheel; the jumping out of the building at dauntless initiation.
nd when Tris fights Tobias in the attack simulation and resists to shoot him and he finally remembers her.
Outstanding! Full of depth while it is still a love story. I loved every moment of it.
I wish it didn't talk about throwing up as much...seemed like every few minutes or so the girl is throwing up or tasting bile, or feeling sick, vomiting or tasting her own vomit. Too much vomit.
In all, i'm glad I listened to the audio version. I've listened to a lot of bad performance audio books and this wasn't one of them. A+ I didn't care for the story much though and that is probably just because it wasn't written with my demographic in mind.
Its a fascinating tale that would begin on may 5th, 1989 in Mease Dunedin hospital and from there the legacy grew. I am adult now.
this book is very suspenseful and it has excellent timing. its filled with descriptions in great detail.
i really can say my favorite character is four because there's a lot secret's still left to unfold.
Emma Galvin is a fantastic reader. She reads all the parts in the dramatic detail the book is written.
absolutely, couldn't stop listening once i began.
i wish Emma Galvin would read more books.
Everyone has been gushing over this novel for quite a while, but I was a bit apprehensive to read it. Everyone told me it was a lot like The Hunger Games, which I wasn't a huge fan of. Boy, was I silly to wait so long to read this novel; it was amazing.
Tris was the heroine we all love to read about. She's fierce, tough, completely kick-butt, yet at the same time she shows some vulnerability. She wants to find her place in life, and she's willing to risk everything to take that chance.
Four is scary and yet completely sexy. How come the nice boy-next-door is never the sexy one? It's always the silent, completely deadly, mentor type that gets our blood boiling. Well, whatever your type is Four is sure to fit it. I loved Four's story. You won't learn the whole picture until the end of the novel but he is one of those people who will capture your heart and make you fiercely protective of.
Veronica Roth spun a dangerous and corrupt new world. It's intriguing, frightening and completely captivating. I read this very long book in one sitting...yes it's that good. The writing keeps you wanting more and more you will be wanting. Good thing there is a sequel coming out next year.
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!
Young Adult books nowadays usually leave me with a longing for more Harry Potter :). Suprisingly this one didn't. I really enjoyed it, and I will wait for the second one with eager antecipation. It's good to know that there are new writters with potential out there! It's light enough for your readers, the story is well thought, and the characters, specially the main ones, are likeable and believable. If you're looking for some light fiction, this might be it.
"One of my favourite dystopian works."
I love Divergent and have it in paperback, kindle e-book & Audible audiobook.
The writing is well developed and the story gripping. The characters are very easy to identify with and you find yourself wanting to learn more about them.
I know i am stating the obvious here but this is a Young Adult/Teen genre. It is light enough for the younger teens but deals with some very important social issues such as bullying, domestic violence,
As many people have said there are similarities to The Hunger Games, such as segmented society within a city, but they are their own stories.
Being the first part of a trilogy, this book sets the scene in this dystopian world and establishes the characters, political issues and power struggles from the outset.
The reader/listener is kept guessing throughout the story with just enough revealed to fill in the gaps and solidify the story by the end, but leaves enough questions to keep you guessing and wanting more.
This book is very well narrated by Emma Galvin, i think she would be suited to many other YA stories and if she had narrated the twilight audiobooks i would have bought them too.
"Potential that was never fulfulled"
This book had such wonderful reviews that I dared hope for a brilliant new series. Not a chance! The characters remained flat and unconvincing. The challenges they faced were not real but in simulations and dreams and these unreal experiences fell flat and sounded fake. I don't understand why the Dauntless faction was considered the brave, if all they ever did to prove their bravery is jump on trains, get tattoos and go through simulations and imaginary challenges.
All in all, even though the book had a couple of promising ideas, overall it sounded hollow and extremely disappointing. I will not be bothering with the second book of the series, despite the fact that many questions remained unanswered.
"Ends with the beginning"
Well, I must start by telling you that I'm probably one of the few who has NOT yet read the Hunger Games trilogy (I'm working on it...) Even so, I understand that there is quite a few similarities. A young girl trying to figure out Who she is. In doing so, finding hidden strengths (both physical and mental) within her which is good since she needs all of them in the initiation process she's going thru.
I listened to the novel vary well narrated by Emma Galvin and I listened as soon as I had a chance (in the car, walking the dog, cleaning the kitchen).
It is well written, the characters are plausible and easy to like (or hate). The main character Beatrice, later Tris, is someone you want to get to know and learn more about.
But, to me it seems that this, the first in a series of three, is very much an introduction to the rest. I don't know if I'm right, but there is something missing. There is a lot of questions you don't get answers to.
Why has the society changed into this very rigid form? What has happened to the world?
For me this lack of background made it difficult to understand and accept Tris'and the other initiates change and behaviour.
Non the less it's a good read. Love, hate, good, evil, morality.
I do hope to find some answers in the next book. I would have given it one more star if I've gotten some more answers from the start.
The story ends with the beginning...
Enjoyed listening to this daily. The narrator portrayed the characters and the told the story. I'm looking forward to insergant
Divergent is an original, clever story. Great characters and performed brilliantly by Emma Galvin.
My favourite character is Four. An intriguing individual with a great backstory.
Emma Galvin does a great job reading this. She gives a very believable performance and is very easy to listen to.
When Tris learns more about her mother's past and the dramatic climax ( no spoilers!).
"Stand aside here comes the DIVERGENT"
I have listened to better but listened to much much worse ... the fact taht the narrator is in a constant state of fear allertness terror means that you do not get a rest from this frantic drama. But She does a good job of making your heat thud.
The Hunger games is the same type of book and this is a compliment. Tris is not the same she is harder and less confident than Catness however the story is edgier in my opinion.
When Tris was saved from the other transfers by 4.
"Quite an enjoyable listen"
I was looking forward to reading this, the initial blurb seemed good, but at the end I felt a little disappointed. There are lots of unanswered questions, but I know there are two sequels to come which I assume will tie up these questions. However, the lack of any information about the history of Chicago, and how this society came to be this way, means that questions are continually popping into my head - for example, who are Dauntless protecting their society against?
Overall a good story, and reasonably well performed - Emma Galvin has a pleasing voice, though at times it was difficult to distinguish which of the characters were speaking initially. The characters were whole and rounded, Tris was brave and curious, Four moody and deep, and all the requisite baddies were in force.
What is a little disappointing though is for the continual presence of strong similarities between this and books such as The Hunger Games and The Host. Maybe most stories set in a dystopian future will have similar themes, that echo over and over again, but I would have appreciated some original twists to distinguish one from another.
"A great new writer to the fantasy pantheon"
I welcome her to the list of fantasy and science fiction writer that I really like. Robin Hobb, Orson Scott Card, George R.R. Martin and Diana Wynne Jones to name a few. The story is told in first person and we are given the perception of the protaganist to the strange surreal environment she finds herself in. We are all brought up in the belief systems of our families and Tris is no exception to this. The five faction construct is obviously just that, a strange construct. I was worried that this would be another Hunger Games pseudo reality story, but I was very pleased it did not turn out like this. The world is very like a computer game with real players and not avatars. I look forward to Veronica Roth honing her craft and producing more wonderful stories in the future.
"Excellent story, but average performance"
The story is imaginative and enthralling. A bit too much Mills and Boon at times but overall very good. Performance is not the best, difficult to distinguish between the different characters.
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