Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Insurgent is the second book in the Divergent trilogy written by Veronica Roth. If you haven’t read the first book, you might as well read this review first and pick up the said book for, surely, you wouldn’t understand this post. This would also seem to be a huge spoiler for the first book. So I suggest that you stop reading this now. But if you have already read Divergent, I can safely assume that you already know the story and that it ends with a cliff-hanger.
This second installment is the continuation of Tris and Four’s journey to unravel the secrets of their personality and the society they are in. Now that a war is beginning to ensue due to the Erudite’s inhumane move to control the Dauntless using simulation, the factions are on the edge of being destroyed. The conflicts in beliefs and interest among the different factions have caused unimaginable terrors to everyone. Being Divergent and the only people not affected by Erudite’s mind control, Tris, Four and the others must decide who to side with in order to stop the oncoming war. Do they try to stand by the remaining loyal Dauntless and the factionless or ally with the person who they so very hated? But would it be easy to choose when one aims to destroy the peace in order to eliminate the factions for a new regime while the other option is to betray the one you love in order to know the truth behind the formation of the society you live in? And even more so, what would you do when the one you love with all your heart refuses to agree with your choice.
After almost a year of waiting for this to come out, I must say I was generously pleased and satisfied with what I’ve read. Insurgent continued exactly where Divergent left off and the transition was very smooth. It is much more action-packed than the first book and also, much more tragic. But nevertheless, I never could put it down, much like with the first book.
There are a lot of things I really like about Insurgent. First is that in this second book, readers would get a good glimpse of the other factions. With Divergent, we only got to know more about the Dauntless and Abnegation, and the evil side of Erudite. Here, we will get a better view of how Candor, Amity and, Erudite functions. Readers will get a chance to know about each faction’s quirks, traditions and belief. We will see both the positive and negative sides of each faction that would really make it hard for us to judge them as purely good and purely evil.
And in that comes the second reason why I enjoy the book. Yes, this ay very well be intended for young adults, but I think that the book’s message is for all. While reading the book, I got to know more about each of the characters, and it was so hard to decide whether I like them or not. They have good traits and then the bad one which makes me want to just kill them. And I guess the author captured reality very well in this case. She was able to reflect people as close as possible to what they really are. We aren’t blacks and white. No one is purely evil and purely good. We are a combination of both. Grays. It just depends on how we choose to act on these parts of us. Some may drift to the negative while some, choose to stick with the positive.
The third reason why I like this book is that its political and societal issues are very thought-provoking. I mean, for all we know, this could be our future. We might be divided according to our beliefs and our personalities. The author made a world in which people choose how they want to be, how they will live their lives depending on character. The Dauntless are courageous, seeking thrill in action and adventure. The Candor values truth above all and despise any form of lying. The Abnegation are selfless people, putting the need of others first before their own. The Erudite are those who thrive to learn, forever seeking knowledge and making innovation. And then the Amity are those who wants nothing more but peace, and believes that unity is important above all else. Yes, at first I tried to categorize myself into one of these factions. But in this second book, the focus was on the Divergent and the factionless, people who aren’t sorted into any of these categories. I admire how the author wrote about them. These people represent those who can be more than just one of those factions. People cannot really be wired to just one personality. No. I mean, could we not also be brave while being selfless at the same time? Does seeking knowledge and information hinder us from being peaceful? We are complex creatures incapable of being caged into just one way of living. Our character isn’t just made up of one trait. We are much more diverse that the factions, which is supposed to put things in order, also became the reason for problems to arise.
And lastly, of course is the love story of Tris and Four. Insurgent showed how realistic Tobias and Tris’ relationship is despite its dystopian genre. In most books, couples re portrayed all lovey-dovey and perfect. Here, we would see the imperfection when certain circumstances force them to disagree with each other and argue. There were even some points in which I thought they would be over because of all the bickering. And I guess it’s nice because that’s how relationships are in real life. Couples have misunderstandings, they argue. And overcoming those trials is what make the bond stronger. And that is how love is portrayed in this book. Imperfect but real.
All in all, I very much loved it, I think more than I loved Divergent. I cannot put the book down because I wanted to know what will happen next, immediately. I stayed up very late because of this book. I always have this fear that sequels would somehow fail my expectations, but this one did not. There were predictable plot twists but some are actually shocking. I suggest you don’t get too attached to any of the characters for surely, you will regret it after the next few chapters. Also, be ready to laugh, cry and be giddy for this book has it all. Oh yeah, the sarcastic humor is another great factor in this book. I give it my full 5/5. And seriously, the ending is such a fucking cliff-hanger. What will I do? The next book isn’t due until 2013. Damn.