Friday, 2 January 2015

A Look at the Book - Divergent, by Veronica Roth





Divergent is the popular first book in a trilogy of the same name; so popular in fact, that the trilogy is in the midst of being made into movies. I'm just focusing on the first book.

this is the picture on the cover of my copy of the book.
Oh, here's the real thing.
If I were to sum up this book in one word, it would be . . . : 


No.


No, no no no, nonononono.

I did not like this book.

If you're a super fan, or even just a regular fan, of these books, let me whip out my Canadian side real quick and say I'M SORRY. Except not really, as I am entitled to my own opinions, and you are entitled to yours.

And so, I continue my not-review-more-of-a-rant.

Let me give you a series of one-word sentences that describe the feelings of all the characters in the book:

Fear.
Worry.
Despair.
Guilt.
Grief.
Oppression.
Anger.
Hate.
Pain.
Fear.
Hate.
Anger.
Pain.

Why yes, some of those were in there twice. In a nutshell; THIS BOOK WILL NOT MAKE YOU HAPPY. I think the characters (and consequently, me) only experienced maybe . . . 3 moments of brief and tentative happiness? The rest of the time, everything is dark and depressing.


BECAUSE:

Unless you've had your head buried in the sand, you know that [SUPER MINOR SPOILER ALERT] Beatrice chooses Dauntless. Fine. That decision only caused her great anxiety and tore her family apart. And so, most of the book is her in Dauntless initiation. Also fine.
Except their initiation is basically like being tortured 24/7 for really no purpose by evil sadistic traitors that have corrupted the ideals of their forefathers and don't really care about human life in the least. There's lots of death. Hugely traumatic, mind-destroying amounts of fear. Someone gets stabbed in the eye with a butter knife. And of course there's the hated female journalist-type person (well, she publishes articles) who couldn't care less about the truth or human life or human rights, and you just really want to stab HER in the eye with a butter knife.

If I were to say one good thing about this book, it would be that it has the capability to make you feel strong emotions. Except none of them are good emotions, and it made me really hate the book.

A lot of people make fun of how similar Divergent is to the Hunger Games. You know, dystopian future, humanity divided up into sections that are all known for one thing and don't really associate with one another, powerful evil people wanting to destroy them, that sort of thing.

Maybe that has something to do with why I don't like this book. Because, I didn't like the Hunger Games when I first read it, either. Sunny recommended it (the Hunger Games) to me, but either she didn't do an adequate job of describing the plot, or it just went over my head, but I was in NO WAY PREPARED for a plot where children are forced to murder each other for sport. It actually came close to making me physically ill. Anyway, Divergent evoked much the same emotions in me. I did not come out of this book feeling satisfied, or like I wanted to read the next two.

However, my friends dragged me to the Hunger Games movies, and (being better prepared for the plot now) I liked them. So maybe I'd like the Divergent movies better than the books? I don't know.

Anyway, after that huge rant, I suppose I should do something review-ish?

THE STORY:

In a dystopian future, the world (at least, the only part of the world we see) is divided up into five factions: Abnegation, for selflessness; Amity, for kindness; Candor, for truthfulness; Erudite, for knowledge; and Dauntless, for bravery.You grow up in whatever faction you're born in, but when you're 16, you have to choose to either stay in your faction with your family, or switch to a different faction and abandon them to better follow your heart. Or something. The factions all started out with the best intentions, but now, OF COURSE, are corrupted. Or at least two of them are.

And then there are these people whom the government fears because, heaven forbid, they are actually capable of THINKING FOR THEMSELVES. They're called Divergents.

Through the book, you follow Beatrice (a Divergent. Yes, shocking, I know) through every agonizing decision she makes, every punch to the face she receives, every bit of hatred spewed at her and by her, every heartache, every unfairness, until you're drowning in a glass box of fear (HA. Book reference). Through [SAME MINOR SPOILER] leaving her family, going through the psychotic Dauntless initiation, playing a near-life-threatening game of Capture the flag, almost being murdered a few times, and trying to fend off the start of a war, Beatrice is a tiny little twig of anger. And fear. This whole book is like a fear fest.

And yeah, there's some romance. If you can call adrenaline-fueled kissing "romance." To me it always felt more like they just needed someone who didn't hate them, wasn't trying to kill them, and actually maybe understood what it meant to BE A HUMAN BEING OMG.

*cough* but enough about the plot, on to the characters:

THE CHARACTERS:

Beatrice, a.k.a. Tris; The main protagonist. Angst. Yep.
Four, a.k.a. [AGAIN, MINOR SPOILER] Tobias: The other main protagonist, also, the love interest. More angst. Sort of frightening sometimes.
Will, Al, and Christina; "Friends." Well . . . ok. Friends, no quotes.
Peter, Molly, and Drew; We hate these guys so, so very much.
Eric; Dauntless leader, really scary, we probably hate him a little more.
Jeanine; the main antagonist, we definitely, really hate her the most.

IN CONCLUSION:

No.

FINAL RATING:





Ok, all ranting aside, if you were planning on reading this book: go ahead. Don't let me put you off; make your own decisions. Maybe you'll love it. Maybe it'll be the best book you've ever read. But I'm very sensitive to injustice, I suppose, so this book was very difficult for me.

But maybe it's just me.

12 comments:

  1. Lol, even though I was the dreaded recommender of these books (and obviously liked them), I loved this review. Even though we disagree you raise some pretty good points. And your rants are amusing:P

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    1. Haha well, more often than not, I DO enjoy the books you recommend. Just not in those two instances. XD and LOL yes, I know how you enjoy my rambling rants. X) <3

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  2. I'm sorry, I had fun reading this rant/review. I disagreed with everything in it, but you at least had legitimate reasons why you didn't like the story.

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    1. Hahaha! Well, I'm glad you enjoyed my ranting, and I'm glad you disagree! It's far better to enjoy a book than to be put off by it. XD

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  3. Someone else who didn't like the book/books!!!! I think you're the first one I've come across. XD
    But for real, for reasons you gave. I think I'll send this to people who ask why I don't like it, 'Here, the reasons in a brilliantly funny way.'
    Loved it!!! :D :)

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    1. LEANNE! FRIEND!! Let us revel in our mutual dislike. XD haha I'm so glad you liked the review! I hope it helps your friends understand you better. X) hehehe. ^.^

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  4. *WAVES WILDY* HELLO HELLO HELLO YOU PROBABLY THINK I'M SOME WEIRD SPAMMER COMMENT BUT I'M JUST SO HAPPY SOMEONE ELSE DIDN'T LIKE DIVERGENT!!!!!!!!! Yaaaaaay, now we can hide behind each other when all the crazed drooling fans surround us!! *hugs you tightly* I agree with absolutely everything you said and I firmly believe I have found a Divergent Disliker twin!

    I hated Four so much, urgh. And Tris annoyed me OH SO MUCH.

    Thanks for posting this, it made my day! :))

    Excuse my rather spazzy comment! ;) Sometimes my enthusiasm can come across as creepy. ;)

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    1. OMG HI HI HI!! :D *hugs you back* I'm so happy to make your day!! I suppose there's more Divergent dislikers out there than either of us originally thought. X)

      psshhhh! My comments on other people's works tend to be very spazzy, also, so I'm glad to see I'm not alone in that. XD

      Thanks for dropping by!!! :D

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  5. I have avoided divergent because I didn't like The Hunger Games and for some reason, not sure this is reasonable or not, I have always associated the two as basically the same thing (dystopian, post-apocolyptic, crazy action, lots of fear and dastardly situations, etc.). This was a fun review to read though. I didn't know ANYTHING about the plot before and you actually made it sound slightly interesting albeit depressing. I still probably won't sign up to read it though, too much like The Hunger Games for me.

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    1. ANOTHER PERSON WHO DIDN'T LIKE THE HUNGER GAMES!! HIGH FIVE, FRIEND! :D Haha, yes, they are rather similar. And while I did find it quite depressing, I must grudgingly admit that it was somewhat interesting, as well. Some people like it, some people don't. If you DO decide to ever read it, I hope I didn't spoil too much for you. X)

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  6. I'm sad you didn't like it because I adore this series to pieces...but fair enough! And hey, I don't think it's supposed to be a happy book at all. But not every book is for everyone, right?!
    Thanks for stopping by @ Paper Fury!

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    1. Hahaha I didn't think you would. XD Agree, that is. BUT! Variety is the spice of life! It's also a magazine that was founded 110 years ago, but who cares? I'm happy you liked the book, I wish I had. XD LOL

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