For starters, I got hooked on the Divergent trilogy earlier this year when Courtney made it our first-ever book club pick and I feel like I’ve been waiting AGES for a new one – I’ve been after a conclusion to the question mark middle child that was Insurgent since I read it back in May.
Also, people are talking about Allegiant, and there’s nothing I like less than feeling like the teenage literati are more plugged in than I am. (Oh, who am I kidding? I’m never going to be able to keep pace with the teenage literati. I just wanted to finish the series so I can talk about it with the kids who come into the bookstore where I work.)
Elizabeth, my lovely 18-year-old neighbour and former babysitting charge who lent me the first two Divergent books, is now grown up and away at university, so I had to fend for myself when finding a copy of this one. I eventually decided to Kindle it, because it doesn’t really make sense to buy the third book of a trilogy and display it on a shelf without its two companions. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like there’s something weird about that.
Anyway, there’s not a lot to say about Allegiant without completely ruining the story. There are a couple of completely mind-bending twists in there, including fresh details about the origins of the world and the five factions, Tris’s genetics and information about what lies beyond the walls of the city. There’s also a shift in the narrative structure from being completely Tris-narrated to blending the voices of Tris and Four, which is an interesting technique that I haven’t seen since I read Eleanor & Park earlier this year (Jodi Picoult is another example of an author that writes from multiple perspectives really effectively).
I’m not going to lie and say I LOVED the ending, because I didn’t. I thought it was strange and sad and a little bit over the top. But I also wasn’t disappointed in it in the same way that I was disappointed when I came to the end of Mockingjay and Katniss and Peeta were reduced to shells of their vibrant former selves. On the whole, I think The Hunger Games was a more enjoyable trilogy, but Divergent was probably more consistent in terms of character progression.