#44 “Insurgent” by Veronica Roth

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  1. Divergent – Veronica Roth
  2. Insurgent – Veronica Roth
  3. Allegiant – Veronica Roth
  4. Still Alice – Lisa Genova
  5. Not For Glory, Not For Gold – Keith Miles
  6. The Mammoth Book of Angels and Demons
  7. Last Night at Chateau Marmont – Lauren Weisberger
  8. The Green Mile – Stephen King
  9. Tiger Men – Judy Nunn
  10. The Rosie Project – Graeme Simsion
  11. The Rosie Effect – Graeme Simsion
  12. The Bane Chronicles  – Cassandra Clare et al
  13. Moriarty – Anthony Horowitz
  14. The Picture of Dorian Gray – Oscar Wilde

I felt let down by Insurgent, but it has nothing to do with the story, if that makes sense. What I mean when I say that I felt let down by the story is that I saw the big twist coming. As soon as Marcus told Tris that there was something going on regarding “secret information”, I just knew what was going to happen. And you know why? Because I read The Maze Runner series. Is that spoilery? I really hope it’s not. Anyway, if I hadn’t read The Maze Runner, Roth’s big twist would have taken me completely by surprise. I suppose that’s one of the pitfalls of reading all of the newish books in a genre: the ideas are bound to overlap. But this is in no way Roth’s fault (unless she ripped off the idea from The Maze Runner, then it totally is). Roth’s story needed to go in a certain direction in order for it to make sense, and it just so happens that something very similar happened in Dashner’s world.

I didn’t see the whole Caleb thing coming, though. Not. At. All.

I don’t mean to scare people off. Roth continues to make astute comments on the human condition in this series. In Insurgent, Roth tackles Amity. Tris gets into a fight in Amity HQ and she is taken away by Amity officials into a room where she gets injected with a drug that makes her forget why she was fighting and the drug makes her feel happy. Sounds perfect, right? Why fight when you can get high? But when you really look at it, it’s really messed up. Fighting is part of human nature. We stand up for ourselves, for our beliefs, and for our loved ones. What would happen if our ability to do that was stifled? What would happen if every time you disturbed the peace with your anger, you were drugged into complacency? It’s a scary, scary thought and one that Roth investigates brilliantly.

That being said, I had some serious issues with the Tris and Four (sorry, Tobias) relationship in this book. It is such a common YA trope to have the central couple experience difficulty to the point of almost breaking up in the second book. Tris and Tobias were no exception. After having to make some heart-wrenching decisions, and after losing her family, Tris is understandably withdrawn and more than a little shaken up. But how does Tobias react? He gets mad with Tris for making certain decisions instead of trying to understand them. I mean, come on, he decided to stay in a faction he hated just to be with her. So why, when Tris really needed him, did Tobias decide to act like a total tool and expect Tris to act like her normal self after what happened to Will? It was ridiculous!
And then when Tris kinda betrayed Tobias to work with Marcus, he forgave her pretty quickly after she called him out for not showing his supposed love for her. If he were that upset, how could that one speech make such a difference? It wasn’t even a particularly eloquent speech! I felt like Tris and Tobias were just being put through the ringer to add more tension to an already fairly tense story. I didn’t like it one bit.

Also, just a head’s up, Tris cries a lot in this book. Like, a lot a lot. Every other page, it felt like. Yes, she was going through a really, really hard time but there are only so many ways an author can describe crying before the descriptions run together. Couldn’t Tris have done something else with her grief besides crying?

I may be being too judgemental.

All in all, this was a solid follow up to Divergent. There were just a few issues that detracted from the otherwise amazing storyline.

★★★ 1/2

Postscript: Has anyone reading this watched the Divergent movie? What did you think? I’m thinking of renting it so I have something to do tomorrow other than stare at the torrential rain!

 

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About Bec Graham

Bec Graham, 24, was born on the wrong continent. Everything from her burns-like-paper skin tone to her inability to cope with the slightest hint of a hot day suggests she should have been born under the gloomy skies and mild sun of the UK. She hopes writing will get her to her rightful home one day. Failing that, she scans the skies for a spinning blue police box, hoping to catch a lift back to the motherland.
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3 Responses to #44 “Insurgent” by Veronica Roth

  1. Pingback: The Liebster Award | Stay and Watch the Stars

  2. Thanks for your comment at OKP! I definitely agree that the relationship aspect of the book felt forced, and your insight on how Roth handled Amity is spot-on (and much more charitable than I was). I’ll be sure to read your Allegiant review after I finish the series. 🙂 -Cheri

    • Bec Graham says:

      Oh wow, thanks for stopping by! You just made my morning!
      Roth’s downfall, I think, is that she had some good ideas and good messages but they got lost in the execution

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