Thursday, October 24, 2013
"Allegiant" by Veronica Roth
Publisher: Katherine Tegen
From Goodreads: "One choice will define you.
What if your whole world was a lie?
What if a single revelation—like a single choice—changed everything?
What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?
The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.
But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.
Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent."
It is no secret that I love "Divergent"- by the end of the semester of my YA class I am sure that the majority of my classmates (not to mention prof) wanted to pull some Tris-like moves on me for CONSTANTLY pushing it on them. That being said, a lot of that love was unfortunately lost on "Insurgent", with me feeling that it lost too much of the magic from the previous book- with Tris and Four's relationship constantly balancing precariously over the chasm, Tris refusing to give in any way, shape, or form, and so forth. As such, on the one hand I was beyond excited to read this book (thinking that "Insurgent" merely suffered from second book syndrome and that Veronica would redeem herself), but on the other, I was nervous beyond belief (based upon the previous two books it stood to reason that there would be a lot of conflict, violence, and loss in this)- at times, giving myself a stomach ache when thinking about actually reading it.
My biggest worries about this book surrounded its ending because I heard vague whispers that THINGS WENT DOWN- as such, I was convinced before even starting it that I would hate it. However, surprisingly, I did not hate the ending, it wasn't near as hard to accept as I had thought that it would be (Plus, I give mad props to Veronica for doing what she did- it's something that I have literally never seen another author do before, them always chickening out at the last minute. She's going to get a lot of hate for it, but when you really think about it, it totally fits with the overall scheme of things). Furthermore, the last twenty or so pages of this book were absolutely gorgeous- I don't often cry while reading a book, but there was definitely some tearing up going on as I read them. Based on the ending alone, I would give the book 5 stars.
Furthermore, I did like the fact that from book to book you can see massive character growth- growth seen in Tris and Four especially (something that really became clear to me as I (re)read all three books in the course of two days). Also, the vulnerability exhibited by all of the characters made them extremely relatable and helped me to understand why they did what they did- even those characters that I swore that I would hate until the end of my days, for instance, Peter and Caleb. Last, I did like the duo POV in this book (I always love me some male POV), however, I can't help but wish that Tris and Four's voices were a bit more ferreted out, it was, at times, difficult to determine whose head you actually were in, since they sounded so similar.
That being said, what I did hate about the book, and what did drag down the star rating, was how often Veronica put us through the ringer- with petty, jealous high school drama, further conflict after conflict between Tris and Four (I mean, didn't we get enough of this in "Insurgent"- we get it, relationships are hard and need work, trust isn't a given, and so forth), and an inundated storyline (you thought that the faction system in the first two books was confusing? It's NOTHING compared to all of the layers of politics and whatnot going on in this book- kitchen sink, anyone?). Furthermore, I was not a fan of the pace of the book, the setting of much of it, and I absolutely loathed the new character additions (with the exception of one). Combined, around the 350 page mark, I was about to give up on the book because I was just so angry with everything going on.
All in all, for me personally it's a toss-up between three and four stars. Overall, I'm glad that I pushed through and didn't give up on the book. While there is admittedly a part of me does wish that this book did end a different way, as I mentioned, I do think that it is what was truly needed and I appreciate Veronica for having the balls to do so. It's clear that she is the most Dauntless person around. Furthermore, I really and truly do hope that Veronica does continue to write after this, not becoming one of those authors like Stephenie Meyer or Suzanne Collins who seemingly drops off the face of the planet after their massive success.