To be honest I didn’t really pay attention to all the hoopla over the #DivergentSeries when it hit the market in 2011. I thought the cover was nice, but with such a plethora of other YA (yes I admit, I’m an avid reader of YA despite the fact my YA has long since gone bye bye) books available, I just never got that far. Then I saw the trailer for the movie and thought, Why Not! I need something to read on the treadmill. So I downloaded the book onto my trusty eReader and started walking my way through Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago.
I’ll admit it took me a few pages to settle into the authors POV and her almost flatland way of telling the story. But once the heroine’s voice found a comfy spot in my psych from which to share her journey, I was hooked enough that I did one of those ‘Can’t put the book down until I’m finished’ things we reader’s so love to do. (My justification – research. I was studying POV from a flatlander’s voice.)
But here’s the rub; what Roth pulled off doesn’t work for everyone. Like I said, it took me a few pages before I was hooked – which can be death to an author. In this case it wasn’t. The technique worked because she created an opening scene that was interesting enough to pull me into the next, then the next and . . . well you get the point. Which is probably why I gave Beatrice’s voice a chance and which is why I’m going to read the second book, Insurgent as well.
As for the story itself, I thought it was a regurgitation of Hunger Games, but not in a bad way. Like Suzanne Collins, this author has used the same dystopic story structure of crèches, socialism, only the fittest survive, can’t-help-myself-love-you romance-ology, that ends with more questions asked than answered. Which is what any good series should do, right?
On my reader’s scale of 1-5 stars, I’m giving Divergent 3 for over all story, and 3.5 for pulling off such a unique way of telling it.