Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Divergent, Book 2

Synopsis: One choice can transform you–or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves–and herself–while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris’s initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable–and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

“New York Times” bestselling author Veronica Roth’s much-anticipated second book of the dystopian “Divergent” series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature.

Review: This sequel has taken so long to be published in France, to the point that I was desperate to have it in my hands one day. Like many other readers, I must confess that when I started to read this second book, I had difficulties to remember what happened before and it was necessary for me to plunge back in the last hundred pages of the first book to remind myself of certain things. The story picks where book 1 left us. The system of factions has been shattered after the simulation attack orchestrated by the Erudites and which decimated a large part of the Abnegation faction. So we find our two heroes Tris and Tobias (Four) then Marcus, Caleb and Peter who are going to the Amity sector. The world they have always known is now ravaged by the war between factions. Amity grants asylum to all those who have survived to the attack under certain conditions. But the respite of the two young people is short. After their success and with half of the Dauntless under their control, the Erudite, in the person of Jeanine Matthews, are determined to finish what they started. The insurgency is coming. Tris and Tobias will have to face once again the horror and they will have to fight for their survival.

Despite a few details that I had forgotten, I must say that I read with pleasure this novel from the start to end. I loved this book although it was darker than the previous one. Here we have a heroine who is not doing well at all. Indeed, Tris feels guilty for what happened to Will in the previous book. She is constantly dwelling on this terrible moment when she was over a barrel. Then there is the loss of her parents. She is a damaged girl, crushed by remorse and sorrow and psychologically fragile. She becomes withdrawn and her relationship with Tobias suffers of that. She starts to hide things and even ends up lying to him. Secrets and lack of communication jeopardize their love story. It was frustrating to see them suffering like that. Tobias finds himself completely helpless against a Tris unstable who is near of falling apart. But when we think of all the terrible things that happened to her, we can understand it and we wonder how she didn’t become crazy. The horrors which our heroine has assisted in book 1 were just a preview of what was really expected to her. Here Tris will have to make some difficult choices and these choices will eat her away even more. She will also have to endure terrible things. Some scenes are unbearable. I am still surprised by the darkness of this book. Our heroine is not spared. Adversity is everywhere, the tests are numerous, all harder as each other and we are far from the trainings and simulations of the beginning.

Concerning the secondary characters, there are those that we had already met in the previous volume, including some Dauntless: Uriah, Zeke, Lynn, Christina, Marlene or Tori. We also met Johanna Reyes, who represents Amity and Jack Kang who represents Candor. This second installment of the series is also an opportunity for us to meet several factionless as Evelyn and we learn more about Tobias (Four) as we finally know who he really is.

With a tightly plotted storyline, the author keeps us in suspense from beginning to end. The stakes seem higher than what we originally thought. It is also a book rich in revelations and twists. Some characters have surprised me, others disappointed me terribly. To conclude I would say it is an excellent book and as good as the previous one. And with such an ending all we want to do is read the third book! The waiting will be long.

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