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)
Yes, I liked the book overall except it was slow going. Once it started to roll I got into it and decided that I had to continue with the next book. It did leave me wanting more.
I liked the narrator, she did a very good, I liked her voice.she did the parts great. I didn't like the he said, she said parts, I could follow with out that.
Yes, she let it open to all kinds of things to happen!
Good book other than a slow start I did enjoy it, I have purchased the others in the series
This series is great! I love it just as much if not a little more than the hunger games. As an adult I sometimes feel silly that I enjoy YA lit so much but with books like this I don't care. It has an entertaining plot and characters. The narration is very good.
Listen to all kinds, but mostly enjoy witty light-hearted entertaining reads. Stay away from romance novels & books with heavy violence.
If you liked the Hunger games then you should like this series too. The story line by itself is not exactly like the Hunger games, but it is similar enough that I would recommend it to anyone who enjoyed that series. I enjoyed it and was able to listen to it with my kids in the car (although they were watching DVDs) without turning it down so low I could barely hear it. No bad language, no adult content mostly just the occasional kiss and some violence, but nothing I consider graphic violence.
A teenage guy who loves listening and doesn't mind reading books :)
Yes! The Story of Beatrice (Trice) is a ride! With her going from extreme to extreme in her Choosing ceremony! She is a great character and haves a good personality!
Mockingjay is probably the closest. It isn't like the Hunger Games but it reminds me more of Mockingjay.
She sounded like a young girl. Made Beatrice come to life.
Divergent: the story of love, loss, and luck.
Get this book!
Veronica Roth is a very engaging writer. She writes about a future Chicago and creates a story that you can see really happening! I love the characters. I love the fighting and friendships and love that develops. I love how "Trice" develops from a teenager trying to find herself and decide who she is and where she fits in. In our world she would be considered a genius. In their world she's divergent but she fits in in 2 other sanctions. So she chose the one where she would feel the most free...free to be herself and to try things she would never have been allowed to do in her parents sanction. And I fell in love with Four! What a champion and gentleman and fighter! Great book. I just finished the 2nd book. Can't wait for the 3rd and final book. But will look forward to anything she writes from now on. She paints with words so you can see her story!
Loved Emma Gavin in Insurgent and Divergent. She has the right age voice for the part! And of course, the book is great! Loved it!
Live a little and listen to a book.
This book took me by surprise. Before I knew it 11 hours had whipped by, and I was buying the next book. I wont give spoilers, but this audio is well worth your time and credit. It is well written and keeps you wanting to know more, it pulls you in and makes you feel like you are part of the characters lives. Thank You Veronica Roth for a great beginning to a wonderful series.
"There is no friend as loyal as a book." - Ernest Hemingway
DIVERGENT is my first audiobook, and I'm pleasantly surprised. Veronica Roth made the images so vivid that I gripped onto every word. That, combined with the unpredictability of which direction the book would go, made a book that I simply couldn't stop listening to.
Toward the end of the book, DIVERGENT takes an unexpected turn: Just when you think that the book is almost over, an entirely new plot takes effect. This makes the book very fast-paced, and I love that. Roth doesn't dwindle on minor points; she focuses on the big events.
Since this is my first audiobook, I've never listened to other narrators, but I thought that Emma Galvin did remarkably well. She worked to develop different voices for each character, and her emotions matched the book's exactly. She had that weak voice that Beatrice has, but she has the power to harden her voice to match the newly-Dauntless Tris.
I don't understand why DIVERGENT is compared to THE HUNGER GAMES. There is a female lead in a post-apocalyptic world in both books, but that's where the similarites end. DIVERGENT includes a less fearful but more emotional lead (Tris) with less focus on romance: she has one love in the book. Katniss in THE HUNGER GAMES is caught up in a long love-triangle that's ends up not going anywhere. If you like THE HUNGER GAMES, you'll like this book too, but they can't be compared to each other.
Overall, DIVERGENT is one of my favorite books. I just bought book two, INSURGENT, and I'm sure that I'll like that too. It is totally my favorite book of 2013. I'm also looking forward to the movie!
I've recently developed from focusing on fantasy romances towards epic fantasy/scifi. I love time travel, magic, and anything supernatural.
The performance and some aspects of the writing has stopped me from continuing on in the series. The narrator barely changed her tone or voice among different characters and situations. While I'm used to narrators such as Jim Dale, Daniel Weyman, Roy Dotrice, and Ray Porter, who have totally different tones, accents, and actually 'act' out the 'scenes' in books, it was hard to complete this listen. Which was sad, as this story had such great potential. She missed many great opportunities to really show emotion.
The author apparently has a thing against contractions, and can be extremely bland sometimes.
Other than those things, which many people can look past, the idea behind the story is great, and it is worth a read/listen.
At first, I was put off by the narrator's continually mispronouncing Erudite Every time I got into the story, I'd hear Air-ee-oh-dite and get jerked out again . And the simplistic writing - mostly present tense. "I look here," "I do this," "He sees that," etc. was off-putting at first. But I was won over after a while by the characters and the suspenseful plot and found myself wanting to continue to listen. I think the author was influenced by the Hunger Games. A dystopian society that uses its young for dark purposes, and a high level of violence. I wonder where we are going with so much violence for the young people. Or for anyone for that matter - it just keeps getting more intense.
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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