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)
Do yourself a favor and read the reviews for book 3 (the final book in the series). No spoilers that I noticed just a whole lot of unhappy readers. It really is like the author get didn’t care what happened to any of the characters or the world she created. Save yourself a lot of misery and skip this series all together. No more Veronica Roth books for me.
Love a good story but lack the time for the page turn. Love audible cant get enough to listen too
I found myself glued to my earbuds. Couldn't get enough. Keep trying to figure my faction
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I'd heard good things about this series, but I didn't really care for this book at all. I found the story depressing and the characters not very likeable, and there just wasn't any level of depth that would justify those things. It's very reminiscent of the Hunger Games, but I found the Hunger Games to be much more engaging. I had a hard time getting to the end of this one, so I'm definitely not going to read on.
Retired Life is great
Galvin's reading made the main character believable. This book doesn't explain the details of collapse of civilization - thank goodness no zombies, but a twist on how for people for the commongood, decide how to live meaningful lives within factions -. differemt means to live a meaningful life. This divergence which brings world peace creates a new kind of ethic. Power overcomes and then is overcome by this lively, small 15 year old who contemplates her own sense of morality. Still it is hard to believe a 15 year old could be so strong.
Will read the second and third book - hope I am not disappointed. My bright 10 year old granddaughter has read Harry Potter, not Hunger Games which has children fighting children to the death. At first I thought this would be a good option for her. I think, however, the book raises ethical and emotional issues that pre-teens aren't ready for. Lot of violence through whole book.
Cry, hard to understand how a 15 year old make such a change of goals
If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again there is no use in reading it at all. Oscar Wilde
Veronica Roth is a new author for me, her book dirvergent was very much with the theme of the Hunger Games which I truly loved. This was a great Y.A novel. She really did a great job in capturing the interests of both boys and girls
There are many memorable moments in this book from from the beginning aptitude test, to their placement, to the initiation and the of test of their fears. I really enjoyed this book and think that if you enjoy the dystopian novels this is a book for you
I have not listened to Emma Galvin before but I think she did a very good job with this story. I feel she was captivating and helped hold your interest in the characters
I loved the first two books. And the third, until I felt like the author tossed the dice to determine the outcome of the characters. Evens, this one lives; odds, they die. To say I am disappointed in Roth's handling of the characters and particularly in the ending of an otherwise great series, is an understatement.
It is a gift to create characters that are people we can relate to and embrace. To kill one off with so little thought or finesse that there is no emotional response in the reader, and particularly a character that made the series, is just proof of a lack of skills or a lack of emotional depth. The death of a major character is not something that should be done lightly or in this case, as I opined above, at the toss of the dice.
I like to reread good stories and I am always recommending good reads to friends. This one will not make my list on either count.
I love Sci-Fi/Fantasy books, TV shows & movies :)
The story line is perfect and the narrator also did a good job on the tone of the lines.
The Hunger Games. Because both books are about the society, fighting for survival and of course a little bit of romance.
I haven't listened to any of Emma Galvin's other performances before.
An unforgettable movie that has ever filmed.
Just read this book okay?
Heck yes! Bringing the characters to life and instead of just reading about it was a delight as always for me. I enjoyed this performance tremendously one of my favorite’s actually.
Tobias. I can relate to his feelings of brokenness.
Emma Galvin brings an undeniable energy that makes the reading engrained in my head and heart forever.
LOVE the entire series.
I listen to a LOT of audio books, Divergent was one of those books that I stayed up all hours of the night because I couldn't help it.
It's written to make you love Tris, Four and the others. The author is great at portraying the unique personalities and struggles.
Right after the choosing ceremony when reality hit and Tris chose to fight by not holding back anything.
Several, there were tears and laughter with the characters.
This is a great start of a series, so easy to get sucked into this book and their world.
Tell us about yourself!
I don't believe young adults would fall for this. The story starts out fair and then degenerates to another version of the Hunger Games. I kept an open mind and listened to the entire trilogy, but it did not get better but worse. The first book was intriguing. So I listened on. The first book was ok.
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