Veronica Roth
Divergent Cover

Roll-Your-Own Reading Challenge: Divergent


Well, Divergent was...interesting. Not that it wasn't fun to read - 400+ pages in 4 nights say it was a pretty fast, fun read - but I got the feeling it was written by somebody younger for people that were much, much younger. Like my 12-year-old daughter, who loved all three books and is now officially obsessed.

Lots of people say the Divergent trilogy are an awful lot like the Hunger Games. The only thing they really have in common, at least the first book, is that it's a dystopian society. Children aren't really fighting against each other for mass entertainment, they're fighting for a place in their society. Conformity is the key to governmental control in this world. When you're 16, you have to choose where you fit in: Amity, Abnegation, Dauntless, Erudite, and Candor. We know that not all people are only kind or selfless or brave or intelligent or honest. But to be more than one is to be Divergent. In this world, Divergents don't belong and are executed. If you don't happen to fit into the particular faction you're attracted to, you become "factionless" and are condemned to live on the streets alone, without family.

I thought it was okay. I'll read the next two books (after I get through what I've gotten from the library). But it was written from the perspective of a 16-year-old girl. Leaving home for the first time, experiencing attraction and love for the first time, possibly leaving a family behind forever... I remember what it was like to be 16 all too clearly, and it wasn't a happy place to be. However, I can most definitely see the attraction of the books to my daughter and her friends. It's been fun to read some of the books she reads and get to discuss them with her. Would I have chosen this on my own? I don't think so. Certainly wouldn't have read this first book all the way to the end.