Tuesday, July 03, 2012

REVIEW: Insurgent (Divergent, Book 2) by Veronica Roth

My Rating: 7 out of 10 stars

Warring between the factions has become a reality, and the Dauntless are at the front of the line fighting the fight, being controlled by a mind controlling simulation serum and not even aware of their actions. Only the Divergent--those whose Aptitude Tests indicated they were suited for more than one faction--are immune to the simulation serum being used to mind control the others. And since Tris was suited for 3 factions during her own test, she is one of the Divergent.

But in their world, being Divergent is a dangerous thing which can be used against you. It means you can't easily fit into one of the predefined molds. Many Divergent, upon discovery of their status, are often found dead by some form or other. So for that reason, all the Divergent are expected to keep their status to themselves. But as it turns out, Tris is not the only Divergent among the Dauntless, and with the help of the others, it's up to them to defeat the the knowledge seeking Erudite, developers of the mind control serum, and find out what they're trying to suppress.

Insurgent is the follow-up to the highly successful dystopian science fiction novel Divergent and though I did like it a lot, there were a couple things that kept me rating it as high as the first book (just one star less).

There was a lot of action going on here, sometimes too much as Tris and crew were jumping from faction to faction, allying with this one, then that one, so much so that I sometimes had a hard time keeping track of where they were. A couple of times, I felt a little extra proofreading could've helped too since some events seemed to contradict one other. An event between Four and Zeke for example, that seemed out of place when I read it yet none of the other characters batted an eyelash; only to find out a few chapters later the reasoning behind said event. A similar thing happened with Peter, when all of a sudden it's as if the author just forgot he was even there and the actions of Tris and Four didn't make a whole lot of sense in that context. Maybe it's the kind of thing most readers wouldn't pick up on but I'm kind of nit-picky like that since I tend to throw myself into the events of the story while I'm reading and those events are ones I can recall that threw me right out of the story I had immersed myself in. That said, it is really easy to immerse yourself in this story... it is that good!

Character-wise, I also liked Tris and Four just a little bit less in this book than I did in the previous. Many times I felt Tris was so out of touch with what was going on around her and found myself getting angry or annoyed at her. And with Four, now known primarily by his real name of Tobias, we discover he's not really the impenetrable tough guy he first seemed. The revelation of his past, along with his relationship with Tris, has opened up a more vulnerable side of him, and though that might otherwise be a good thing, I felt he used that vulnerability to manipulate Tris one time too many. I even thought of him as a bit of an Emo at times! LOL But still, the fact that I can have such strong feelings for the characters when I don't feel they're acting the way I want them to just goes to show how much the story impacted me. It kept me up way too late reading on several nights! Overall, I felt it was a worthy successor to Divergent and a recommended read indeed! :)