I finished the Divergent series over a week ago, but it’s taken me awhile to write this review because I honestly don’t have too much to say. Unfortunately, Veronica Roth didn’t improve upon Insurgent‘s mistakes in Allegiant. While I didn’t hate the ending as much as most people did, I still felt like the whole book was just mediocre and didn’t live up to the hype started by the first book.
Allegiant follows Tris and Tobias as they live at a compound owned by the United States government. The compound is what has been controlling their city’s experiment to try and make “genetically damaged” people healed. There are people who believe that genetically damaged people are inferior to those like Tris, who have healed genes. And there are those who believe that your genes don’t cause you to be a good or bad person. That tension creates most of the conflict in the book, culminating in big life-changing decisions for both Tris and Tobias.
I couldn’t take this book very seriously because it’s pretty illogical. Everything that happens is too convenient and simplistic. I have a hard time believing that Tris and her buddies would have actually been able to do half the things they did in the book if this were the “real world.” There was also a serum for everything, which seemed like an easy way out of a lot of potential issues. One of the things I love about books like Harry Potter is that even though they take place in a fantastical world, there are still rules governing what can and cannot be done. Magic, or technology in this case, doesn’t always make things simple.
There was also barely any character development for the supporting characters. Roth introduces so many different characters that it’s hard to keep track of who is who and how they are related. She barely gives any time to Tris’s “close” friends–the book is all about Tris and Tobias. Which would be fine if Roth didn’t act like the deaths of other characters were SUCH a big deal. Every time a character dies, Tris can’t stop thinking about it, even though the reader knows next to nothing about that character. Ultimately it became annoying that these deaths were a big deal to Tris, because I couldn’t have cared less.
Overall I think that Roth just needs to take time to hone her skills and become a better writer. At first I couldn’t believe that she’s only 25 and wrote Divergent during her senior year in college, but now I can see how she’s still an amateur writer. That’s not to say she isn’t good (I loved Divergent), but that she could definitely be better. Maybe the crazy success of Divergent packed on too much pressure or rushed the process, but I hope her potential hasn’t run out with the uninspiring end of this series.