Book Review: Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Title: Insurgent (Divergent #2)
Author: Veronica Roth
Genre: Dystopia, Sci-Fi, Post Apocalypse
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: May 2012
Pages: 525
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris’s initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth’s much-anticipated second book of the dystopian Divergent series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature.

My Review:

“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.” 

This book picks up immediately after the action packed ending of Divergent. I loved where it stated – right in the thick of things. And to keep those who read the first in the series a year ago when it was first released, Veronica Roth was kind enough to put a fantastic summary on her website. Tris is suffering from an incredible amount of guilt – both from her actions and over her parents. After arriving at the Amity compound with Four, Caleb, Marcus and Peter, she needs to make a decision. What to do next? The whole faction system is in tatters and with the Eurdite leader hunting down the Divergents, Tris has to do all that she can to survive at the risk of her relationships and her life.

I get so nervous reading the second in a series when I adored the first installment. They often seem to suffer from something I like to call “Sucky Second Syndrome”. But this is not the case with Insurgent. This book is just as intense and brilliant as the first. The characters have grown throughout the series so far. Tris has come a long way from the Abnegation community she was born into. She’s Dauntless by choice but during this novel you can see that she’s so much more than that. She embraces her Divergent nature to try to survive the war as best she can.

For me, one of the highlights of this novel is the relationship between Tris and Tobias. They are the perfect example of a couple who don’t need big romantic gestures to show that they love  each other. I also loved how the author showed their relationship in terms of trust – how essential it is to have on both sides. Some of the best dialogue in the novel was interchanges between these two.

“We’re all right, you know,’ he says quietly. ‘You and me. Okay?’ My chest aches, and I nod. ‘Nothing else is all right.’ His whisper tickles my cheek. ‘But we are.” 

See? Despite the world crumbling down around them they still manage to be all romantic and sweet but at the same time being entirely appropriate for the circumstances.

As far as action goes – this book has plenty. We get to see all the other factions that we missed in the first book as well as some of the side characters that only got brief mentions. I thought everything was so well thought out. There’s nothing from the first novel that’s forgotten or skipped over – people who died are remembered and those who survived aren’t without their own issues.

There are a lot of scenes concerning gunfire, running from enemies and trying to work out just who is the enemy and who is on the side of right. Some scenes did drag a little in terms of the fighting and I was tempted to gloss over a few of them. But they all added to the atmosphere of war and a world in tatters.

I loved this book. I loved the world that Veronica has created and the characters that she lets inhabit it. There are a few surprises in this one and some revelations that may be a little hard to fully grasp. I needed to give the ending a few reads and I’m still not entirely sure what’s happening – I think that’s half the enjoyment right there. I can now spend the next year speculating and coming up with my own theories – all of which will be proved to be entirely incorrect. 😛

The third book in the Divergent series is as of yet still untitled although  do love the name of Detergent that I saw Ms. Roth using on her blog. This series has been a pleasure to read so far. I can not recommend it highly enough. I bought copies of the first two novels for both my brother and my sister for their birthdays next month. The sibling seal of approval is as high as it gets for me.

Purchase the novel from: 

Amazon / Book Depository 

One Comment

  1. Pingback: Book Review: Allegiant by Veronica Roth | whY.A.not?

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