Insurgent by Veronica Roth – Book ReviewPosted: February 28, 2014
* CONTAINS SPOILERS
My friend Julie was right. Tris is a selfish, little cry baby.
I loved Divergent, the first book in the Divergent series. The story was fast-paced and introduced us to a dystopian Chicago of the future where people in society are separated by personality traits. I really enjoyed following Tris as she joined the Dauntless faction and underwent the three stages of initiation, made friends and enemies, and started a romance with her smart and emotionally stable/available instructor, Four. All while hiding the fact that she is Divergent, that is she has an aptitude for more than one faction.
In Insurgent, the story continues where we left off in Divergent. Following the Erudite attack on the Abnegation, Tris and Four, and various other characters, go back and forth between factions either seeking refuge from the Erudite-controlled Dauntless army or trying to discover what the sinister Jeanine Matthews may be planning. In a twist I wasn’t expecting, Tris and Four’s group at one point find safety with the faction-less who are being led by Four’s long thought dead mother, Evelyn. Tris and Evelyn don’t trust each other, but both groups agree the faction-less must work with the other factions to take down Jeanine. However, Four’s father, Marcus convinces Tris they need to leave the group and find out what secret information Jeanine has that Tris’ parents may have died trying to protect. The final showdown takes place at Erudite and just when all parties think they have won the day, a strange video plays. A woman claiming to be Edith Prior (a relative of Tris) reveals that the city had been sealed away from the rest of the world and once the number of Divergent have increased, the fences separating their city from the outside are to come down. Chaos ensues and we’re left with that cliff-hanger.
While I enjoyed Insurgent, I found the story flat. All of the running around between factions is both confusing and annoying. I realize visiting all of the other factions may have been Veronica Roth’s way of allowing readers to get to know the other factions, but I found them all pretty much the same. We are introduced to some new characters, such as the leaders of the Candor and Amity, and Evelyn Johnson-Eaton as leader of the faction-less, but no one new really made a huge impact on the story.
The most disappointing thing about Insurgent was losing my interest in Tris. In my review for Divergent, I raved about how she was tough and had a good head on her shoulders. In this book, all she did was ignore people’s advice and promptly get into trouble, feel sorry for herself and mope around as a physical and emotional mess. Yes, she had been injured and tortured, but I thought she was emotionally stronger. Where was our brave heroine who topped the initiate rankings and proved everyone wrong? She had been through so much and was just a cry baby in this book. I was disappointed by this inconsistency in her character. Or am I being too harsh?
Up next … Allegiant! I’ve heard there’s controversy surrounding this one. Have you read Insurgent? Tell me what you think.