Get ready to plunge yourself... into an oppressive story where barely anything good happens... get ready...
Oh man, I am going to pull the "I wanted t...moreGet ready to plunge yourself... into an oppressive story where barely anything good happens... get ready...
Oh man, I am going to pull the "I wanted to like this" card, because I did. Tris made a lot of brainless decisions here, and I just got to the point where... nope. I wasn't enjoying her as a suffering character with the potential for development, I just wanted out of her head. I was not thrilled nor impressed--alienated I was, though.
Since I won't be going onto Allegiant like I wanted to, I will say my series-end spoilery piece about the third book here, so beware Allegiant spoilers:
(view spoiler)[Other than the hype, one reason I wanted to read this series was the fact that the main character dies in the end. Horrible, I know! But as a plot device it can either make or break a novel--it can be done extremely well, or it can suck the life out of you in a very negative fashion. It's an extremely risky move. When I was a starting writer, I was all for taking risks, avoiding the cliches, introducing unseen awesome. Including, for me, main character death. But the more I studied writing, the more I read myself, the better it got ingrained into me that protagonist death in fiction fails far, far more frequently than it succeeds.
I connect with words, and a good novel is a fusion of emotionally charged words that yank you into another dimension--into someone else's brain. It's exactly because the reader connects with the protagonist on such a level that killing them off is brittle ground to tread. In a movie or a TV show, with that lovely, emotional background music and a pan of the sunset, somehow character death is more acceptable, right? After all, you can't hear the thoughts of the characters, you don't get their points of view in so intimate a way as you do with fiction. Well, to say it is acceptable would be a stretch, but what I'm trying to get across is fiction, written words in story form, and film, moving pictures in story form, are two completely different mediums that hardly bear comparing. Books are also usually longer, and one forms personal images while reading, whereas in film, everyone is offered up the exact same, unchanging images.
And I'm on a tangent. Anyway, point being: investment is going to happen, especially in a three book long series. The series is ending anyway, why should Tris' death bother us? Because the happy ending is socialised in our brains; what we can reap as satisfaction from a book is what we love and appreciate. I believe "happy" can be reaped, depending on the circumstances of the ending. Was it truly a necessary sacrifice? Was there something beautiful about the ending of one life in order to nourish other elements or triumphs of the story? Obscure and overly broad, yes. It can happen, but it's best left unattempted. It breaks far too many "moulds of fiction", and if you ever want someone reading your story, it's risky. To the "formulas" of story writing I advocate moderate adherence, because they have been instated with good reason. They help you keep on track when you're otherwise a scattered mess, like I was with my earliest novels (and still am, really).
My whole "protagonist dies" mindset was incredibly scattered, even though I believed in the reasons for her death, and I still do, but I would never attempt to get the novel published. It, or any of my experimental fiction, because when other people write stuff like that, it annoys me. It is annoying to read. You come into stories with expectations, right, and although you want to be surprised you want that surprise to be a bend of the mould, not a flat surface with no mould whatsoever.
After reading enough to gain my "life's too short to read bad books" mentality, that is a conclusion I've come to. Killing off the protagonist usurps our friendly mould in a giant way, and that is probably why everyone's freaking out over an ending I know nothing about, except for "Tris dies". And if what leads to that ending was anything like Insurgent, then I truly do not care to know.
Divergent was fun--it had just the right flow and ebb of structure that we need as readers, me especially, but Insurgent was a scattered mess because that structure liquified and slipped through the holes. Finding a balance is an extraordinary art, but you can always tell when an author has; it shines through their works. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)