Friday, July 6, 2012

Friday Reads: Insurgent by Veronica Roth

I have anticipated this book ever since the moment the characters launched themselves onto the train at the end of Divergent.   Craving this adventure was just something that never left me. 

It should, by this point, come as no surprise that I love a good Dystopian fantasy.   Seeing an author play "what if.." with humanity is great fun for me - despite the fact that they usually take turns down some pretty dark streets in those scenarios.  Seeing the extent of the darkness that someone sees in human nature is fascinating.

Insurgent picks right up where Divergent left off...and the action doesn't stop for the entire novel.   You'll get no spoilers from me - just my views on the book itself.

I was really surprised at how prominent Tobias's family was in this book.  And how deceptive Tris's brother ended up being.

I hated being a 16 year old girl and wandering around in the first person with Tris made me remember how illogical the 16 year old brain could be.  I often had to tell myself to keep reading and that it was a 16 year old girl speaking, because I found myself lapsing into moments of "I don't know how much more of this I can take".  On the flip side of that - the fact that Roth could succinctly capture this tone and voice speaks a great deal to how adept she is at character development.  The insecurities and independence are expertly woven in.

The romance between Tobias and Tris is really tested - as only a teen romance can be tested.  Luckily I am not reading the book for the romance because much if it is really trite.  You'll find no passion or "meat" here.  The romance is really just a strings on the marionette - being tugged by the assorted other characters to cast shadow and doubt.

Finally, the novel leaves the reader with "the big secret"...kind of.  Unfortunately, I pretty much guessed the big secret fairly early on in the book and found it frustrating to not be surprised when the book finally got there.   It was as though I was led to the "surprise" moment...only to not have enough detail to see if I had gotten it right.  But that is what book three is for, right?  For them to elaborate on what they meant and the significance of Tris and Tobias and Marcus and Evelyn to it all.

Because only part of the secret I guess was revealed (or is "eluded to" a better description?), I have a feeling that the rest of what i suspect will be confirmed in book three...and I will be frustrated to have been led through that as well.  

At least there is still a whole lot of adventure in these pages to redeem it as a decent read.  I don't know if the payoff was worthy of the anticipation, but I did still enjoy the story.  

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