My rating 4.5 out of 5 stars
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, 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 alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are--and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating 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 unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
★★★★ 4.5 Stars! ★★★★
Damn. This book kicked ass! I'll admit, if it wasn't for the movie just being released and the previews begging me to go see it, I probably wouldn't have read this book. However, the reader in me refused to let myself watch the movie without reading the book first so I decided to dive right in and give the book a shot. ...Needless to say, I wasn't disappointed.
I won't touch on the story-line details because I refuse to give away any spoilers. I will say this though: The story revolves around a world that has been divided into factions representing five human traits: Honesty... Selflessness... Bravery... Peacefulness... And Intelligence. The people living in these factions follow their own personal rules and stay only among themselves. Of course this doesn't stop others out there who constantly thrive for more power...
That's it. I refuse to give anything else away because it would only ruin the story for you. I will take a minute to gloat about the characters though, because in my opinion they were absolute perfection.
For starters, I honest to God couldn't have asked for a better heroine. I was expecting the typical kick-ass personality that tends to come with the territory with these kind of books, and while Tris's character definitely had that element, she still had a sense of vulnerability about her that I loved. She had thrown herself into an unknown life that held danger and excitement, and though she consistently faced fear, betrayal, pain and loss, she held on to and reveled in the freedom that she came to find. Throughout the book we're able to see her slowly starting to discover who she is and what she's really capable of. Her character had just the right amount of strength without becoming too much... Something that I appreciate insurmountably, only because I'm not a huge fan of strong in-your-face heroines.
The hero Four on the other hand... There are no words.
His character was so incredibly easy to fall in love with. Four was smart, brave and fair- But he was also hiding secrets of his own. However, rather than keeping them to himself, it was refreshing to watch him slowly open up to Tris the more time they spent together. One thing I truly appreciated was the slow build up when it came to his relationship with Tris. He defended her honor without a second thought and was there for her even when she didn't initially first realize it. He saw more in her character than she saw in herself, and each day he helped her to find her way and become stronger in the new life she had chosen.
Don't be mistaken: I wouldn't classify this story as a romance novel although there was plenty of it involved to satisfy my romance-loving heart. Instead, I would classify this as a powerful story about strength, and how if you're strong enough in the mind than you can overcome almost anything. I'm honestly hard-pressed to come up with any flaws when it comes to this book, and that in itself is pretty damn impressive. Over-all, Divergent was an addicting action-packed read that hooked me from start to finish. It's unique story-line never became too over-the-top or difficult to follow... Instead, it was one hell of a captivating read that I couldn't get enough of!
★PS: For those of you wanting to know if this ended on a cliff-hanger, you'll be happy to know that it doesn't. Although I can't wait to read the next installment, I was perfectly content with the way things ended, even if it didn't end on a happily-ever-after per se.