In the world of Divergent there are five factions. Abnegation, Dauntless, Erudite, Amity and Candor. Each of these five factions was created when theIn the world of Divergent there are five factions. Abnegation, Dauntless, Erudite, Amity and Candor. Each of these five factions was created when the world was torn apart by a terrible war. Each faction chose a sin that brought down the human race and decided to live their lives based entirely on the corresponding virtue.
Abnegation think selfishness was the downfall. So they live an entirely selfless life.
Dauntless believe cowardice was the reason for the fall of man. So they spend their time being courageous.
Erudite think that lack of knowledge ruined the world. They devote their lives to the pursuit of knowledge and advancing technology.
Amity believe that being cold hearted caused the war. So all of their actions revolve around kindness.
Candor think it was lies that ruined the world. And so they never lie, and truthful at all times.
At the ripe age of 16 children from every faction take a test that tells them which faction they truly belong in. Up to that point they are raised in the faction their parents belong to, but the society in general believes in the phrase "faction before blood."
Beatrice, the main character, was raised in Abnegation and has spent her entire life trying to be selfless, but finds selfish tendencies constantly cropping up. She knows in her heart that she can't spend a lifetime being selfless and that it's not really who she is.
At her choosing Beatrice picks Dauntless to be her new faction, and immediately is carried off by a crowd of wild and rowdy Dauntless members. They take her to their headquarters, and she begins initiation.
I loved this book for what it was. I will admit there are many plot holes and that some factors don't make a lot of sense. I don't believe that anyone in the human race would ever choose to live their entire lives living by one rule.
The love story is very stereotypical: Beatrice is a tiny girl who isn't attractive and has a very underdeveloped body, but yet she catches the eye of Four who is their cute, older trainer during initiation. It does send a good message though really: Someone will love you for what's inside instead of what's outside. I did like also, that she took the love story a bit further and more realistic than some teen authors have. There is a lot of touching, kissing, and even a scene where Beatrice straddles Four in a train car while they are making out. However, this leaves a lot of pressure for the next books, because it won't make much sense if Four and Beatrice don't have sex at some point soon. She can't hold off sexual tension forever when she's taken it this far in the first book.
I also liked that Beatrice ended up being the hero at the end. Four is strong and fast and deadly and fights like nobody's business, however when it comes down to it Beatrice ends up saving him instead of the other way around. I really enjoyed that she was such a great hero.
We'll see what the future of this series looks like. It could go really bad, or it could continue to be good. I'm going to be reading the next book for sure. (Actually I'm reading it right now)...more
**spoiler alert** I think this would be self explanatory: but spoilers for Divergent and Insurgent contained within.
Tris and Tobias with a small group**spoiler alert** I think this would be self explanatory: but spoilers for Divergent and Insurgent contained within.
Tris and Tobias with a small group of others find their way to the Amity headquarters at the beginning of this book. Amity tell them they can stay as long as they follow all of their rules: No fighting, no weapons... there are a few more... but naturally Tris gets into a fight with someone and they decide to leave, but don't get the opportunity before the Erudite show up. Tris and Tobias flee back to the city, and from there the book is a topsy turvy chase scene for several hundred pages. I won't go through all the nitty gritty, but they end up at just about every part of the city running around and away from the Erudite. All in all it was a very fun read despite the fact that not much really happens.
There were a few continuity errors that I only noticed because I had to reread Divergent immediately before. The one I really still remember is that in Divergent the Abnegation symbol is described as a pair of hands palm up as though prepared to lift someone up, and in Insurgent the symbol is described as two clasped hands. I thought it odd that something so important was described completely differently.
Also: after all of the lead up in the first book, and how far they took their physical relationship in the first book... I was waiting for them to get it on in this book. But alas... no sex... which made me sad. I'm really tired of teen authors these days dancing around sex. There is a scene in the book where Tris is about to sacrifice herself by turning herself into the Erudite. She knows she's going to die, and she finally admits to herself that she loves Tobias. They make out for a bit, start to get under the shirts, and then they decide just to snuggle the night away. REALLY?!?!!? You want him, he wants you, you're sure you're going to your DEATH and you don't GET IT ON!?!?!
But I could forgive all of that because I went into this book expecting it to be a fun quick read with some romance stuck in...
UNTIL THE END!?!?!?!?!?!?
Wow... lame. Apparently Veronica Roth saw the movie "The Village" and was like: "Hey! That movie is great! I'm going to steal that idea!" For the entire book she hints to you that you're going to find out what's outside the fence, and that people in the government were in on it. At one point Marcus (Tobias' father and the leader of Abnegation) tells Tris, very Matrix style, that he can't tell her, he has to show her. So you think it's going to be something TOTALLY crazy and interesting right?! Wrong... you know what's outside the walls? The real world! I get the feeling that it's not our world, but a future world, but still. You see a video that was recorded by a woman before she willingly has her memory removed and replaced with a new one. She explains that they created this little world because people in the outer world had lost the ability to evolve so they created this place to let people evolve Divergents, and once there were enough Divergent people in this society the government was supposed to open the doors and let these people back out into the world. REALLY VERONICA ROTH!?!?! LAME!!! With all the lead up there had to be something WAY cooler than this at the end of book two... so then Tris and Tobias find out that the government just didn't want to lose their little safe world so they decided to start killing all the Divergent instead.
So that's my explanation of my epic disappointment in this book. I will read book 3... (Me and my husband have a bet that the next book will be called Convergent)... but I don't know how much I'll enjoy it after the disappointment of book 2....more
**spoiler alert** First of all you'll have to give me a break if I screw up some details... it took me about 6 months to a year to get this book finis**spoiler alert** First of all you'll have to give me a break if I screw up some details... it took me about 6 months to a year to get this book finished.
Vin and Elend are traveling around the lands attempting to find all of the caches that Rashek AKA The Lord Ruler left behind. Inside each cache is a large metal plate with a message from Rashek that Ruin could not read or alter. Each cache is a large cavern filled with food and supplies. He planned for Ruin's return for 1000 years. However, none of the caches they find contains the atium stash they are looking for.
Breeze and Sazed travel to a city that Spook has infiltrated and they discover that Spook has made himself into a local hero. He is the Survivor of Flames and the locals believe he is the heir of the Survivor. Spook has started hearing and seeing Kelsier, though no one else can, and he is listening to everything the Survivor tells him. Together they send the city into full revolt and it is at this moment that Spook discovers that Ruin has been controlling him all along and appearing to him as Kelsier. He rids the metal from his body that has been allowing Ruin to control him and takes back his own life.
Meanwhile TenSoon escapes the clutches of the kandra to find Vin, and informs Sazed that the kandra were originally Terrismen that Rashek transformed when he held the power at the Well of Ascension. They were the only Feruchemists left in the world and Rashek transformed them so they could be no threat to his power. Sazed travels with TenSoon back to the kandra homeland so he can learn of his origins from the first generation kandra.
Vin has a confrontation with Marsh in Luthadel. Marsh has retained a bit of himself deep down under Ruin's control this whole time, and he's been waiting for his moment to use this power over Ruin. Vin has been confused as to why she cannot draw power from the mists as she did when she killed Rashek. Marsh uses his moment to pull Vin's earring from her ear. It was acting as a link to Ruin which is why the mists drew away from her. Now she is able to draw the mists into herself, but they don't stop. She pulls all of the mists from the entire world into herself and dissolves into the air becoming a God, becoming Preservation. Preservation gave up its consciousness to trap Ruin, but now Vin has provided a new consciousness. She holds great power, but fears to use it because she doesn't want to destroy the world as Rashek did.
The world is still falling apart, but Vin doesn't know what to do. Then Ruin kills Elend and Vin decides she has nothing left to live for, so she pushes her being up against Ruin, and since they are equal they are both destroyed.
Sazed watches two bodies fall to the earth, Vin and a boy he doesn't recognize. Sazed then watches the smoke that is Preservation seep out of Vin, and the smoke that is Ruin seep out of the boy and he comes to the conclusion that he is actually the Hero of Ages. All of the prophecy have always applied to him but he just didn't want to admit it. So he takes the powers into himself and becomes more than both. He is creation and destruction. He fixes the earth, makes all right because he uses his keeper knowledge to fix everything correctly, scientifically.
Everyone comes out of the caverns they were in hiding from the sun and discover the world has been entirely remade. The grass is green, the sky is blue, and everything is beautiful and new. There is a note from Sazed that says he will be watching over them and the world and he has become God. And then Spook and Breeze and the rest take off to restart civilization.
I know that was a long recap... welcome to the world of fantasy books...
Ok... First thing's first(and I know I said that up above... but I'm starting over now...): This book needed about 200-300 less pages. All of the battle sequences could have gone honestly (for me anyway). The fighting sequences were cool in the first book because Allomancy was new to me and I loved seeing the creative and scary ways it could be used in battle. In the second book it was still cool because the fights were on a much larger scale than in the first book, also Elend was way more powerful than the other Allomancers so it was neat to see what he would do. In the third book I just felt that they got REALLY repetitive and that I didn't care anymore. It took me about a year to finish this book and I think it's because every time I got two pages into a battle sequence I would lose interest and set the book down. I know how they use their powers, it's cool, but I already know and have seen this stuff play out exactly the same way in my head every time... Elend's not going to die, neither is Vin... let's just move on...
Secondly: I really really really didn't need so much of Sazed's struggle with religion. I understood the point of it, but sometimes I just wanted to slap him. I don't think we needed enough narrative from him about how he just couldn't believe anymore, especially that Tindwyl is gone, even though it's got nothing to do with her really. I just wanted to kick him while he was down and get back to Spook's story most of the time.
Other than that I loved this book. The plot and ideas are VERY cool. I did not see a lot of the end twists coming right up until the end. Even when they started talking about Ruin using people pierced through with metal as his puppets Vin's earring still didn't click in. And the fact that Sazed ended up being the Hero of Ages was very awesome. I really felt like, despite all of his whining, it was a great end and it made a lot of sense. I liked the way that him being a Feruchemist made him the perfect Hero. I almost cried when he found Vin dead and took the power... also because of the way he leaves Vin and Elend at the end.
Honestly if there hadn't been WAY too much whiny Sazed, and too many unneccessary battle scenes I would have given this book a five star rating. It's saying a lot that even though those two huge negative factors were looming over this book for me that I still gave it a five....more
Elena is a young woman who's father has died and left her behind in the care of her stepmother. Much in the tradition of the Cinderella story Elena'sElena is a young woman who's father has died and left her behind in the care of her stepmother. Much in the tradition of the Cinderella story Elena's stepmother dotes upon her two daughters and forces Elena into the role of maid. She becomes known around town as Ella Cinders as she is always covered in ash from sleeping on the hearth. When her stepmother's debtors start coming around to collect, her stepmother fears bankruptcy and packs up her most prized and expensive possessions to take to the road with her daughters, leaving Elena behind in their home.
After the debtors clear the house out Elena takes herself down to the town square to wait with the other young girls awaiting an employer to hire them on as a maid. No one will take on Elena as they are afraid of the return of her stepmother. Just as Elena is about to leave the square an old woman arrives in a cart pulled by a small pony. She tells Elena she will hire her on.
After they leave the square the small cart takes to the air and Elena finds herself flying over the land. The woman informs her that she is this kingdoms Fairy Godmother and that Elena was to be the Cinderella of that realm. The tradition, which is the magic in the kingdoms that creates fairy tales, has provided her the magic to make her Cinderella. Although, the tradition sometimes does falter, and the prince in Elena's kingdom is only 10 years old! Not a very fit prince to fall in love with! So Elena finds herself surrounded by magic that is attempting to force her into a fairy tale that she just won't fit. The Fairy Godmother informs her that she can use that magic to become a Fairy Godmother herself, and that she'd love to show her how.
Elena agrees, and her life is flipped upside down! She finds that being a Fairy Godmother is not so easy as she supposed, and neither is finding love as a Fairy Godmother.
This story is great! And I love the idea of the way the tradition works, creating circumstances that push people into fairytale molds. It's very clever, and incredibly funny with several hilarious commentaries on the similarities between the traditional tales. If you enjoy princess stories, and Disney movies, but don't scoff at a little added sex and romance, than these are the books for you. They're a blast to read, and I often found myself laughing out loud and reading excerpts to my husband....more