Divergent is the new Hunger Games. Kind of. I did not mean to compare, but it seemed like the same theme. Factions are like districts, only some can reach initiation, very much like only one victor can survive, serums that produce hallucinations which force the person to believe that his friends are his enemies, like the tracker jacker’s venom. However, I did find it a nice read.
From the back of the book:
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
Like I said, the plot of the story is very similar to the Hunger Games.
When one turns sixteen, he/she are required to take a test to decide the factions they go to. The factions will be their homes for the rest of their lives. Beatrice’s test results give a very unusual result and she is informed that she is divergent. In the choosing ceremony, she chooses Dauntless much to the dismay of her family members. Beatrice(now Tris) then commits many acts of bravery, and the dangers of being Divergent are now becoming clearer to her due to the simulation serums that she has to take during initiation. She also realizes that her instructor and love interest, Four (Tobias), is also slightly divergent. After she becomes a part of Dauntless, everyone is given a serum which makes them hypnotised (I understood it this way) and do the bidding of the people of Erudite, who are planning to overtake the government from abnegation with a little bit of inside help from the Dauntless. However, the serum does not affect those who are divergent. Tris and Tobias escape the marching army of clueless Dauntless citizens, but end up in Jeanine’s room(She is the main person behind the coup), where Tobias is given a serum(there’s that word again) that produce hallucinations which force Tobias to believe that his friends are his enemies (like the tracker jacker’s venom), and he also tries to choke Tris. Tris, with the help of her father and her brother, Caleb(her mother was shot while she tried to defend her daughter and admitted to bieng divergent herself.)finally crashes the computer with the help of Tobias, who recovers by the sound of her calling his name. The people are restored to normal, but Tris and Caleb are left as orphans.
The book is ideal for woman empowerment, since Beatrice is the embodiment of the ideal brave woman who has nothing to depend on, also, the main antagonist, Jeanine, is female. During her last test of initiation, the simulation serum highlights seven of her fears. One of Tris’ fears include sexual harassment, which I feel is a very important issue in today’s world. The characters were likable, and I could relate to the short childlike frame of Beatrice. Beatrice Prior comes from the Abnegation faction who live to serve humanity and are “Wasting valuable resources” according to the other factions, especially the Erudite faction because of their habit of serving to the poor and homeless(factionless). I absolutely loved the idea of being sent to your respective factions based on your qualities and it reminded me of sorting people into their respective houses in Harry Potter. Christina, Tris’ friend in Dauntless is vital to the story because she helps Tris discover her inner beauty and also makes her confident.
On the whole, the book was rather enlightening, but I wish it didn’t remind me of the hunger Games so much. I dont think I have joined the Divergent fandom, and I don’t think I ever will, but nevertheless, the book was good enough for me to read through the night.