Book Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

by Jenn (eating bender) on September 2, 2011

In order to fully convey my excitement over this book, I should first explain the story behind it. I came across Divergent while reading food blogs. I had seen people talk about it and how similar it was to The Hunger Games, another book series that I adore.

Whenever I hear about a new book these days, I immediately Google the author. I was incredibly impressed by Veronica Roth’s website and blog. It’s a great balance of personal journey and helpful hints for aspiring writers. I thought, “this is great!” So then I ordered the book.

The next morning, I decided to Google to find Veronica’s blog again.

Then I noticed another link that came up in the search. Cue a scene similar to this:

“Wait. Veronica went to Northwestern?”

“Wait. Veronica graduated from Northwestern in 2010?” (One year after me.)

“WAIT. Veronica wrote Divergent during her winter break of senior year?!?!?!?!”

I was impressed. And inspired. And, I’ll admit, slightly envious. But mainly those first two!

When the book arrived, I immediately dug in and finished within two days. What follows is my review.


Divergent by Veronica Roth

In Short

Definitely a book worth picking up if you’re a fan of any of the following: young adult series; books about dystopian societies (think Big Brother); books about female heroines kicking butt; and action-packed adventure, with a little romance thrown in for good measure.

The Details

The book centers around a young girl named Beatrice Prior, soon-to-become “Tris” for the remainder of the series. Her world is divided into five factions that are centered on single virtues: Candor (honesty), Abnegation (selflessness), Dauntless (bravery), Amity (peace) and Erudite (intelligence). The book begins with Beatrice having to go through an aptitude test that will tell her which faction suits her best. Ultimately, however, it is up to her to decide at the Choosing Ceremony. The plot – and subsequent action-packed scenes – takes off from there.

This was definitely a book that was hard to put down. I attempted to “savor” it because although it is the first of a trilogy, the second and third books aren’t out quite yet. (Veronica actually just finished the first draft of the second book.) My plans for savoring did not go very well, however, and I soon found myself desperate to know what happens next, which is always the sign of a book I enjoy.

I think Veronica Roth paced the scenes very well – nothing seemed too long or too short – and her character development was demonstrated mainly through action, rather than her just telling you what a character is like. She included plenty of plot twists and turns that I was not expecting and made me hungry for the next installment, which should be out next year.

Overall, I would give this book 5 out of 5 stars.


I may be easy to please, but I truly did think it was that good! If you pick up a copy for yourself or have read the book already, I’d love to hear what you think in the comments section.

What books have you been unable to put down recently?

Your answer may become my next review!

How did I do? Was my information helpful or not descriptive enough? I’d love to hear what you’d like to see in these book reviews, since this will be the first of many to come!

Have a wonderful long weekend!


{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Megan (Braise The Roof) September 2, 2011 at 11:31 am

Awesome book review- my book club has actually been looking for some new, exciting voices so maybe I’ll suggest this one! We can always use a page turner! (next month’s book is 900 pages long- Lord, help me)


2 Markella September 2, 2011 at 11:42 am

I love the same books you described and, by your review, think I’ll really like this one. I’m impressed by how young the author is and its awesome she got published. If you write more on this type of book, I’ll be sure to read them.

For new books, have you read the Mortal Instruments Series? It has 4 books in it now and is suppose to have 6. I enjoyed most of them.

On a completely different note, I can’t wait for the Hunger Games movie!


3 Angie September 2, 2011 at 5:00 pm

Requesting from library right now! Thanks for the review- keep ’em coming.


4 Melissa @ TryingToHeal September 2, 2011 at 10:23 pm

I just read Sarah’s Key, such a great book. The characters become so alive in your mind and you can’t help but feel all the feelings of the characters. If you read The Help and cried, this one will make you BAWL it touches you so much!


5 Jess September 3, 2011 at 11:38 am

I loved the Hunger Games, so this sounds like a good book! I am very impressed she wrote in winter break of senior year. Geesh!


6 Janet Scragg September 3, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Theresa read and loved the Hunger game series.
She too is looking forward to the movie.
She devours books like candy.
Is this book appropriate for a 13 year old?


7 bakebooks September 5, 2011 at 7:44 am

I haven’t read this book yet. I need to get on The Hunger Games soon!

May I ask your opinion on something? I’ve written Book Reviews on my site before. I have criticized by a lot of “spammers” that they are written poorly and with poor grammar…I know these are people that are bashing healthy living blogs in general – but still it hurts. I’d love your feedback sometime on what you think of some of them…thanks.


8 Jennifer September 8, 2011 at 5:08 pm

I can’t wait to pick up this book. It sounds right up my alley. I just finished the Hunger Games series in a week flat! I loved every second of it!


9 healthyescapades October 31, 2011 at 6:41 pm

I absolutely love this book! It’s the first time I have read a trilogy/series book that is so new there are no other books to read! I am going crazy! I can’t wait for the second book :)


10 Jenn (eating bender) November 2, 2011 at 11:32 am

Woohoo! Now that you mention it, this is the first time I’ve done the same waiting game since Harry Potter. I can’t wait, either! :)


11 healthyescapades November 2, 2011 at 1:55 pm

I had to wait for some of the Harry Potter books, but it doesn’t feel the same as the Divergent series!


12 aneducationinbooks December 20, 2011 at 10:29 am

This was a great book and I had a hard time putting it down.


13 Jenn (eating bender) December 20, 2011 at 10:31 am

Awesome! I felt the exact same way! :)


14 Monica January 19, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Finally got around to reading this book and loved it! Thanks for the recommendation on here :)


15 Jenn (eating bender) January 25, 2012 at 12:59 pm

I am so glad to hear that you liked it! Can’t wait for Insurgent to come out later this year. :)


16 Must Come Hungry January 30, 2012 at 4:38 pm

I just downloaded the sample of this book on my kindle and I’m hooked already! Definitely going to have to buy the book now :)


17 Jenn (eating bender) February 1, 2012 at 11:38 am

Woohoo! I’m so glad to hear that! Let me know what you think once you’re finished. :)


18 Cara (Twinthusiast) September 11, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Hey! Ok so I’m not going to read your Insurgent review until I read the book, so I looked up this review :) Really enjoyed Divergent overall. I thought it definitely paled in comparison to HG, but what wouldn’t? My only plot issues were: Five factions to encompass all human strengths/vices? I thought we were missing some major characteristics that could have been addressed with more factions, but I guess she was trying to steer clear of HG district comparisons. Also I felt that it was strange that Amity was hardly discussed at all during the first book, and that we had no insight into what initiations would be like for other factions. That said, I’ll definitely be reading the next book. These are fun. Thanks for the suggestion!!
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