I dreaded writing this review not because I hated the book, but because of the emotional wreck the book left me in right after I finished it. And before that, I was mostly wanting to throw the book out the window. But that wasn’t happening because my window has screens and I actually like my Kindle.
Warning: Since this is undoubtedly the third–and FINAL–book of the Divergent trilogy, there are bound to be spoilerish things from the previous two books. I will try to minimize these, though.
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 meaningliess. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend to complexities of human nature – and of herself – while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.
(And I think I’m going to revert back to my usual review format, because jumbly thoughts on this is going to end up with me getting all frustrated and teary-eyed again.)
What I Loved
The dual perspectives. I was pleasantly surprised by Tobias’ perspective, and I took to it rather quickly. Of course, this made me suspicious about how the ending was going to go, but that suspicion pretty much got pushed to the back of my mind because reading Tobias’ thought process was kind of refreshing. Not that I minded Tris’ perspective for three books. I think she gets better developmentally throughout.
Tris. If she wasn’t already the main character of the trilogy, I’d totally Limelight Lady her. By book 3, I’m normally irritated by the YA heroine (yes, this includes Katniss), but I actually still liked Tris, even during thought processes that led her to some of the silliest decisions ever. I think the dual perspectives truly did help, because then it was easier to detach myself as a reader when it was Tobias looking at Tris through a different set of eyes.
The bromance is real. Can I just say that I like it when guys do their guy-hugs in books? I think it’s cute. I also like that there are relationships blossoming outside of the norm, and I found it kind of sad that this whole GD vs. GP thing is now going to get in the way of meaningful romance between certain characters. Anyway, this is getting away from my point. The point is, Zeke and Tobias as besties are much <3.
Who run the world? Girls! By the end of this book, it’s pretty apparent that many of the leading figures throughout the story were females. Jeanine practically began a war. Amanda Ritter was pretty much a founder of the faction system. Tori and Johanna led their respective factions for some time, and Evelyn became the leader of the factionless. True, many of these women get carried away and make numerous mistakes, but the fact that they’ve risen so high is something worth admiring. Also, need I mention the awesomeness that is Tris, Christina, and Cara? Yeah. Badass.
Tobias. I both want to hug Tobias and kick him off the top of a building. I’m still mad at how things ended with Uriah, for one, and even madder when Tobias continued to make every other stupid decision available to man. One of the saving graces about Tobias, though, is that he eventually owns up to his mistakes and sooner or later, he does something grandly right. His final confrontation with Evelyn was pretty much the cream of his decision-making in Allegiant, so much so that I may or may not have teared by the end of it.
Heartbreaking deaths. I’ve read quite a bit of G.R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, so I’m supposed to learn well enough that GETTING ATTACHED TO CHARACTERS IS A BAD IDEA. But what decent book out there refuses to try to engage the reader with the characters on the page? I can’t help getting attached. So when characters started dying off–particularly the named ones–I was clearly going to be upset. And as I said in my Insurgent review, Roth has a way with dealing with grief that’s super-genuine. I’m not even going to talk about the irony in the Tori-George situation. Ugh. I cannot.
The romance. I found the random bouts of romantic gestures amusing. Sometimes I thought Tris/Tobias snogged way too much. Sometimes I thought they didn’t snog enough. Most of the time I just kept muttering at the book because I was wondering why they haven’t just gotten the sex over with. Lord, me reading books with adult romances doesn’t help. Yes, I know it’s a YA, keep your britches together, people. I’m just saying, I could have done with more on some parts, and much less on others.
What I Didn’t Like
I have been a part of too many uprisings in my short life. The factionless, and now this GD one, apparently. – Tobias Eaton
The constant barrage of uprisings and revolutions. I was not happy about where the story went outside of Chicago. You’d think the researchers would learn from their observations and know NOT to start one uprising after another. But no. Nope nope nope. Honestly, I thought Evelyn turning into Jeanine was a decent segue into the third book, and I liked how that plotline ended. The addition of a third and maybe fourth revolution (GD vs. GP) within the compound was excessive. By that point I just wanted the damn story to end, enough that I was not against someone releasing airborne death serum everywhere.
‘I’m not saying your genes aren’t different,’ I say. ‘I’m just saying that doesn’t mean one set is damaged and one set isn’t. The genes for blue eyes and brown eyes are different too, but are blue eyes ‘damaged’? It’s like they just arbitrarily decided that one kind of DNA was bad and the other was good.’ – Tris Prior
Wisdom from the mouth of babes. How are you going to tell me that Tris is one of the few people with this clear an insight into a person’s genetics? The girl has been in one faction environment after the other, and yes, she’s found her footing, but gods, shame on everyone else–especially the higher authorities–for creating such a division amongst GD and GP in the first place. I was so annoyed by this thinking, and I’m surprised Tris hasn’t gone crazy over this herself.
Some characters not getting their comeuppance. Yeah. I’m a vengeful lady. I wasn’t exactly happy about how a number of characters got away with the shit they did throughout the books. And yes, that’s nice, people in Roth’s post-apocalyptic world rose above their primal need to shank some bitches. That doesn’t mean I have to like it.
Okay, I think I’m going to stop there.
3 out of 5 cookies!