Everyone has been raving about this series for the past year and a half, since The Hunger Games trilogy ended. Now that the movie is to be released next year and the third book has finally been published, I can now say that I am a fan, because honestly - I need another fandom to follow. [seriously though, do I? Really?] Truthfully, like Hunger Games, it took me at least three times to start this book before I really got into it. The first four chapters or so are dull enough to make you want to think twice about starting the trilogy. But to be perfectly honest with you: push through those four chapter because after that, you'll be so, so very glad you did.
Roth has created this world that is almost like the Hunger Games, but not very much at all. In the Hunger Games, Collins' Districts are all different according to status and class systems. In Divergent, Roth's factions each have certain human qualities attached to them that make them unique. Candor for truth, Amity for peace, Erudite for intelligence, Abnegnation for selflessness, and Dauntless for bravery (or for fearlessness, as I like to think of it). It would be much more difficult to create a fictional dystopian world based on human qualities, I think, because each character placed inside those Factions must represent those qualities. Each character must be defined by their faction. Roth does this perfectly with all supporting characters around the protagonist, Tris.
Joining the Dauntless helps Tris become more of a dynamic character. For me, I was cheering for her when she kicked ass and a few times I literally wanted to wring her around the neck for not thinking straight and being stupid. To be honest, it is not Bella Swan stupid, but stupid to the point of "why the hell would you think that?" or, "stop crying like a baby."
But I'm pretty sure that's what Roth was trying to do with Tris, because she's from Abnegation. Abnegation made her a conservative, selfless girl who never seen herself in the mirror and who never, ever had any sort of PDA with the opposite sex. And I like that Roth took her time to let Tris grow.
As for the mysterious Four, he is really the one that wanted to know more of. Each time his presence graced the page, I wondered what else I would learn about him. His sarcasm and his determination was endearing. His protection of Tris and his hesitation to express his emotions made my heart ache. And because I like Four so much, I'm almost afraid to see what Roth does to him in the next two books. (AND PLEASE, NO ONE SPOIL IT FOR ME) because honestly, in these types of books - 95% a character you love either gets really injured, turned to the dark side, or dies.
I heard there's a death in the third book.
I do hope it's Peter.