One choice can transform you, or destroy you.
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. – Goodreads description
This book picked up exactly where Divergent left off. It also didn’t do a lot of that annoying recappy stuff some series do. It just assumes you’ve read #1 and gets on with it. You know, kinda like I’m doing in this review.
The first section goes like this:
“I wake with his name in my mouth.
Before I open my eyes, I watch him crumple to the pavement again. Dead.
Tobias crouches in front of me, his hand on my left shoulder. The train car bumps over the rails, and Marcus, Peter, and Caleb stand by the doorway. I take a deep breath and hold it in an attempt to relieve some of the pressure that is building in my chest.
An hour ago, nothing that happened felt real to me. Now it does.
I breathe out, and the pressure is still there.” – Insurgent, pg. 1
And the book pretty much continues along that vein. Tris and Tobias seem to jog from one near-death experience to the next, with pretty constant momentum, which is great. But throughout the entire book, Tris takes every possible moment to go on about how awful she feels, the guilt that’s eating her up over what happened to Will, how she doesn’t know why Tobias even wants her (gotta say, by the end of this book, neither do I) and her desire to sacrifice herself and die a death her parents would be proud of.
There were times when Tris smacked too much of Bella in pretty much all of the second movie of the Twilight Saga. Other times she’s a total badass – but I couldn’t really enjoy the badass-ness because the whole time she’s thinking about how she can’t possibly beat whatever it is and she’s not strong enough. Way to ruin it for us, Tris.
Not only that but she keeps lying to Tobias for no good reason, or just pushing him away when she has the opportunity to get over herself and show him that he matters. Yeah, I get that they’re teenagers. But I’d imagine facing death on a daily basis would somewhat mature a person. Possibly even make them realize that they should be honest with those they care about. If for no other reason than they might not get another chance.
And the constant inner monologue… geez, girl. I mean, yeah, I get that what she went through was traumatizing. I am sure I’d be a blubbering mess if I were in her shoes. But I’m not, and I don’t have millions of people in my head experiencing my thoughts.
I basically spent the whole book wanting to do this:
That said, I was impressed that the pace of the storyline kept up pretty evenly throughout. So many series and trilogies have this lull in the middle where action abates and you feel like you’re slogging through an endless quagmire of tedious nothingness to get to more action. Roth managed to avoid this pitfall, making this book just as easy and quick to get through as the first one. If slightly more gloomy.
Even though Tris annoyed the pants off me on several occasions, I’d still recommend this book as part of the larger whole. And I was particularly pleased to hear that the final book splits narrative between Tris and Tobias. That’ll be a wonderful change of pace. (Assuming, of course, that he’s not as much of a wet blanket as Tris.)
By the end of the book a lot of the ends have been tied up, but the story is by no means over. This’ll cause a whole new set of obstacles for our duo to tackle in book three. And hopefully Tobias’ voice will be both believable and a helluva lot less annoying than our original narrator!
Time to tackle Allegiant, the one everyone went apeshit over. Still terrified Roth is going to kill EVERYONE. Okay. We’re good. I can totally handle this.
Author: Veronica Roth
Published by: Katherine Tegen Books
Released: May 1, 2012
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Dystopia, Conflict
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