I enjoyed this book more than the previous one as with all the major players either back in Society or working for The Rising, there was a lot more acI enjoyed this book more than the previous one as with all the major players either back in Society or working for The Rising, there was a lot more action happening. Also, I enjoyed getting Xander’s POV in this book as his job as a medic fighting the Plague was a really interesting one as were his internal thoughts about Cassia. Still, this book failed to excite me. The storyline didn’t throw up anything that surprised me and it ended in a rather predictable way, which will please fans who get upset when authors try to do anything unpredictable with their major characters...more
Unlike the first book in the series, Matched which is told from Cassia’s point of view, Crossed is told from the point of view of both Cassia and Ky.Unlike the first book in the series, Matched which is told from Cassia’s point of view, Crossed is told from the point of view of both Cassia and Ky. Whilst initially, I did enjoy getting into the head of the mysterious Ky, I found that having two POVs did slow the pace of the book down. Unfortunately, the book did not benefit from this slower pace. Crossed is a ultimately book about a journey and getting the characters to where they need to be for the events of final book to be played out. Therefore, not an awful lot happens, especially when comparing it to everything that happened in Matched. There are some really nice moments and some interesting reveals, but all in all it is not that exciting. I did enjoy the introduction of the characters Indie and Eli both who gave the plot a good nudge along when it needed it the most. Also, like Matched, I enjoyed the focus on the importance of literature and art on humanity....more
I was a little nervous about this book going in. Whilst I like a little romance in my books, I don’t enjoy books where the romance is the main focus.I was a little nervous about this book going in. Whilst I like a little romance in my books, I don’t enjoy books where the romance is the main focus. Matched could have gone down the path of being a romance novel, but it didn’t and I was extremely grateful for that. In fact, the romance in Matched is just a little detour from the main action. The main focus of the book is Cassia’s journey from being a good citizen to starting to overthrow the system. It is a brilliant glimpse into the mind of someone who is witnessing their whole world collapse around them – and there isn’t much time to be focusing on romance when that is going on. I also love the importance that poetry has in this book and the effect it has on Cassia. Condie could have used anything ‘forbidden’ to drive her protagonist, but the fact she used poetry and the one poem she chose in particular was inspired and thought provoking.
If you are a seasoned reader of Dystopian novels, the world in which this book is set is nothing new. It has all the Dystopian stables – controlling ‘benevolent’ government, mysterious pills, uniformed clothing, controlled leisure activities etc. However, it is what the author does within this world that is interesting and the way she ‘cracks’ her main character from within her bubble.
I devoured this book in a single sitting. I think I got up once to replenish my drink, that is how tightly this book gripped me. I love books like this. The fact that a day after completing this novel I find my mind wandering back to it along with the urge to leave work early so I can devour the sequel is a sign of how much I enjoyed this book....more
I really enjoyed this book as it allowed us to explore more of the Uglies universe but without focusing on Tally and her journey. This book follows thI really enjoyed this book as it allowed us to explore more of the Uglies universe but without focusing on Tally and her journey. This book follows the story of a Aya, a young girl who just wants to be famous. In her world, fame is everything and determines everything from who your friends are to where you live. If you are famous, you have it made and if you aren’t, well then, you are an extra. It was a fascinating look at the Twitter/Facebook mentality taken to the extreme. I found the character of Aya very relatable. Who doesn’t, in some corner of their mind, want to be famous? Who has not thought, at some stage, that being popular will solve all their problems? This book explores all of these questions and more but not in a way that is preachy or talks down to its audience. For those of you who are Tally fans, she does make an appearance and it is interesting to get an outsider’s view of her and the way she treats other people. Hint: she really isn’t a nice person. Most of all I enjoyed the fact that the star of this book is someone who is not special in any way, except for the choices that she makes.
This book left me cold and I was quite thankful when it ended. It is not that it is badly written or has massive plot holes. It is just that I no longThis book left me cold and I was quite thankful when it ended. It is not that it is badly written or has massive plot holes. It is just that I no longer cared about the characters or what happens to them. This was because that once again, Tally starts the book being ‘re-booted’ and therefore disconnected from the events of the previous books. This plot device worked in Pretties when Tally went undercover to see if the cure would work. However, doing it again and for no compelling reason made me as a reader disconnect. If Tally doesn’t really care about the issues that were important to her in Uglies and Pretties, then why should the reader? The reader has gone on this journey of discovery and growth during the past 2 books, but Tally has not gone there with us. Therefore the character felt to me as someone I used to be friends with and whilst I have a passing interest in what happens to her, I am just no longer emotionally involved. The parts of the book that should have delivered an emotional punch, just didn’t. It’s a shame really as I enjoyed the world in which this series was set and I would have loved to remained emotionally connected to the story the whole way through.
I didn’t enjoy Pretties as much as I did Uglies and I’m having a hard time trying to articulate why, perhaps it is due to Second Book Syndrome. But foI didn’t enjoy Pretties as much as I did Uglies and I’m having a hard time trying to articulate why, perhaps it is due to Second Book Syndrome. But for whatever reason Pretties didn’t captivate me as much as Uglies did.
In Uglies, whilst Tally was forced initially to go to The Smoke, what she did there and the choices she made were of her own doing, but in Pretties, everything happens to Tally and she rarely takes an active part in determining her own fate. She is just swept up in the tide of change that other people have initiated. This irritated me and probably lead to me not enjoying the book as much as I did the first one.
However, that is not to say that Pretties is a bad book. It isn’t. We are still on the path of discovery about this new world and some of the things we discover along the way are rather shocking. I’m just hoping that this book was the lead-up to something good. A slightly tricky path the reader needs to navigate to reach the pay-off.
This book was published in 2005, so I’m a little slow in discovering it, but I’m really glad I did. This book is a fantastic mix of dystopia and sci-fThis book was published in 2005, so I’m a little slow in discovering it, but I’m really glad I did. This book is a fantastic mix of dystopia and sci-fi. The world as we know it is no more and Tally’s world has taken over – a world in which they think jealousy and wars can be prevented if everyone was gorgeous. Let’s face it, we have all wanted to wake up one morning and find ourselves beautiful, thinking that will solve all of our problems. This book takes that yearning to the extreme and shows us that even if the exterior looks pretty, it doesn’t mean the interior is. And the interior here is frightening.
I really liked the main character of Tally. She is like the vast majority of us, growing up in our tiny bubbles and it is only when she is forced to look beneath the exterior that she starts to question things and by questioning things, she grows as a person.
I also really loved the digs at our current culture, what the people in Tally’s world call Rusties. She is appalled at our indiscriminate use of natural resources and has been taught to believe that we were all crazy (she may have a point there). However, it is in our world that her world got its start – our focus on pretty things and people and our ever-growing reliance on disposable items. Tally’s world is our world taken to its most superficial extreme and it is both frightening and intriguing.
I'm really nervous about final books of series as they can either finish the series perfectly or destroy the whole thing, and you don't know which theI'm really nervous about final books of series as they can either finish the series perfectly or destroy the whole thing, and you don't know which the book is going to be until you are almost halfway through. Thankfully, this book is one of those wonderful final books that leaves you satisfied rather than in despair.
In Outpost, we learn more about the world of Razorland, the different type of settlements that arose and some more answers about what exactly happened. What I really liked about the book is that the author didn't make things easy for Deuce. What annoys me in books is when the protagonist has a revolutionary, never-tried-before idea which she then goes off and achieves without any problems whatsoever. Not so for Deuce, she really fights to get any traction for her 'crazy' scheme and I appreciated this reality. It is a good lesson for life, especially in this instant gratification world. Nothing comes easy or quickly for any characters in this book. In fact, things are quite brutal.
The book neatly wraps up all of its threads and leaves the vast majority of characters exactly where you want them to be left. However there is action, adventure and heatbreak along the way which means that even though you think you know how this is all going to be played out, you are going to end up with quite a few surprises. Just like a good book should do.
**spoiler alert** Once again this book suffered from what the other two books in this series suffered from – great ideas that are poorly executed. It’**spoiler alert** Once again this book suffered from what the other two books in this series suffered from – great ideas that are poorly executed. It’s a shame really because this book, as well of the rest of the series, had the ability to be really compelling, but it just doesn’t live up to the hype.
In this book, the story is told from the perspective of both Tris and Tobias and this fact gives away right from the beginning that one of them isn’t going to survive until the end. I was looking forward to getting inside Tobias’ head, but unfortunately, unless I took careful note of whose name was at the beginning of the chapter I had no idea whose head I was in until a character specific reference was made. The style of writing for both Tris and Tobias was exactly the same and this made it impossible to tell them apart. It takes a talented writer to be able to write in two completely different styles within the same book, but if you are going to have two characters telling the story, this needs to happen unless you want to totally confuse the reader. I admit I was confused most of the time about whose POV I was reading.
Another thing which disappointed me about this book was the reason why Tris and Tobias didn’t have sex. Now, I don’t think that sex needs to happen between characters that are romatically involved, but if you keep taking them to the brink of having sex like Roth did repeatedly during this book, they need to have a pretty damn compelling reason not to go through with it when the time presents itself. With Tris and Tobias both growing up Abnegation and hints being dropped throughout the book about the strict rules they have about sex before marriage, given that hand holding is as far as things get between unmarried couples, I was expecting that even though Tris and Tobias had both left their faction that this would be the reason why they couldn’t bring themselves to sleep together. I was hoping for some interesting internal struggles against what they had been brought up to believe and what they may or may not believe now, but that didn’t happen. Instead Tris put the brakes on things because she was embarassed to even take her shirt off because she felt she was too pale and her breasts were too small. I believe my reaction to that being the only reason given was ‘Are you f*cking kidding me?’. It was at this point, I stopped giving a shit about either of them because I had given up hope that they were going to develop into fully-formed characters. I know most of you gave up hope of that in the first book, but I was really hoping that as Roth gained more experience as a writer that her characters would become more real and well written, but they never did.
I was really disppointed in this series. It had so much potential, but it fell completely short of the mark.
**spoiler alert** After being slightly disappointed by the first book of the series Divergent, I really wanted to like this book, but unfotunately it**spoiler alert** After being slightly disappointed by the first book of the series Divergent, I really wanted to like this book, but unfotunately it suffers from the same thing that Divegent did – great ideas that are poorly executed. It is extremely frustrating to see hints of brillance that are buried under awkward character development and plot developments that don’t seem well thought out.
I still really dislike the relationship between Tris and Four. It still feels incredibly forced, especially now that the characters have different motives. What could have been a really interesting exploration of what happens to new love when the characters don’t agree about how to resolve the current conflict between the factions instead becomes superficial. The interactions between Tris and Four just don’t ring true and since this forms a large part of the plot, it brings the whole book down.
Anothing thing in the book which left me really annoyed was Lynn or more accurately Lynn suddenly coming out as she dies from a fatal gunshot wound. Now gay characters coming out of the closet right before they died was a popular thing back in the 80s and 90s when authors were scared about writing LGBT characters, but I honestly thought we had moved past that. We have no idea how LGBT people are regarded in the Divergent universe. Either they are accepted, which means Lynn should have been out and proud throughout both books or they are vilified, which means the other characters should have reacted when Lynn declared her love for Marlene, who died earlier on in the book. Instead Lynn’s declaration of love for Marlene is ignored by all the characters making Lynn’s disclosure pretty much irrelevent. I felt that Lynn only came out so that Roth could claim that the series had an LGBT character. It was a token move and therefore is extremely insulting to LGBT readers.
This is one book I feel will make a far better film then it does a book. There are lot of great ideas that a good scriptwriter can bring to life giving us the great story Insurgent really should be.
The final book of the Legend series does not disappoint. Lu has once again been able to keep this book as fast-paced as the previous two, in fact I th
The final book of the Legend series does not disappoint. Lu has once again been able to keep this book as fast-paced as the previous two, in fact I think she might of even kicked it up a notch. I was very glad that I had reserved an entire afternoon to read this book instead of how I usually read books which is a couple of chapters every night before I go to bed. I think if I had done that I would have been up at 3am refusing to put it down until I had finished it.
Lu is able to perfect the fine balance between exploring the relationship between Day & June and keeping the characters focusing on the life-threatening events going on around them. Therefore, this book should pleased readers from both the romance-focused and the action-focused camps, without alienating either.
This book is a quick read, approx. 4 hours, but so many events are packed into that time. Lu is able to tie up threads from the previous two books, including some threads you never knew were there, without making anything feel rushed or barely explained. She also expands the world she has created by expanding the events to include Antartica. Never before have I wanted so badly to visit a place that when I stopped and thought about it really replused me. Still a couple of weeks there would be really fun as long as I never let myself think about the long-term effects of living in that kind of society.
The Legend series can be read on so many different levels - first as a gripping, action-packed adventure in a dystopian world, but also secondly as a stark reflection of today's world. So many nations that are familar to us today can be seen in this novel - a little exagerated to be sure, but still visible. It is for this reason I would love to see this series being studied in high schools.
If you loved the first two books, then this novel does not disappoint. There might be some protests about the ending by those in the romance camp, but there really shouldn't be. The novel ends exactly the way it should do.
tl;dr summary: A very satisfying conclusion to the Legend series. Make sure to read it during the day, otherwise run the risk of going to sleep in the early hours of the morning.
**spoiler alert** A popular plot device in the Dystopian genre is having humanity divided up into factions where the protagonist is someone who doesn’**spoiler alert** A popular plot device in the Dystopian genre is having humanity divided up into factions where the protagonist is someone who doesn’t neatly fit into the system or is rebelling against it. In this respect Divergent is no different. Humanity has been divided up into the factions Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity and Erudite and Tris does not fit neatly into any of these categories and therefore is labelled Divergent. Along with the popular plot device of factions also comes the overused sequence of plot points: rebel doesn’t neatly fit into faction, rebel unwittingly causes a conflict between the factions and/or tries to stop the conflict, rebel becomes an outcast of society. I was really hoping that Divergent would suddenly depart from this plot structure and carve out some new terriority, but disappointingly, it never did. This isn’t to say that Divergent isn’t an interesting read, but I was hoping the book would be something that it was not, which was my own fault entirely and therefore, I was left unsatisfied by it for this reason alone.
Also, those of you who are romantics are going to dislike me immensely for my next statement, but I really didn’t like the romance between Tris and Four. It felt forced. It is understandable that Tris would have a massive crush on her instructor almost to the point of developing Stockholm Syndrome, but I really didn’t understand Four’s interest in her. The novel makes out that Four is impressed by her bravery, but given they are in Dauntless, this character trait should be something that is expected. Yes, Tris, being the protagonist, is better than everyone else, but to the point that Four would fall for her so quickly? No sorry, just not buying it. The romance would be much more believable if it occurred later on in the series, rather than forcing it to occur in the first book just to please readers who now expect the two main characters to fall in love.
Still, there was much in the Divergent world that I did enjoy. The Dauntless initiation process is brutal and disturbing enough to please The Hunger Games fans (myself included) and it is interesting to see how the different characters undergoing it react and develop. Also, I loved the Dauntless tradition of getting a tattoo to mark a special occassion or overcoming a personal challenge – a part of the culture which those undergoing initiation immediately embrace. The choice of tattoos are an important key to understanding the characters and I am sure in times to come, many English essays will be written about the characters tattoo design choices. The world of Divergent itself appears really well thought out and I’m hoping in the next two books of the series, the world as a whole will be explored more as the first book was quite limited as we are only seeing the world through the eyes of Tris, who is a rather naive and unknowledgable 16 year old girl. Hopefully, as her character gains more knowledge about the world she is now living in, the reader will as well.
My overall impression of this book is mixed. It was interesting and enjoyable enough that I will keep reading the rest of the series admittedly because I want to know how this all plays out, but there were many elements that just didn’t feel right or have been overused in previous Dystopian books.
tl;dr summary: An interesting enough read, but readers familar with the Dystopian genre will be disappointed by the lack of originality.