Friday, January 10, 2014
Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Let me just get this out of the way now. I was disappointed. The first book in the series, Divergent, was a very slow read to me, and I was wondering if I was ever going to get into the book. Right at the end the action picked up in Divergent, and I was hooked. When it was over I couldn't wait to get the next book and continue on. The ending saved Divergent for me because I almost stopped there. Once I was able to get Insurgent from the library I was ready to find out what happened. This book opens up, and the action that was so heavy in the end of Divergent was missing.
Maybe I am wrong here, and I am fine if I am, but it seemed that instead of keeping with the pace of the last book this one was a step back. This book opens with the aftermath of Divergent and how the characters reacted to it. I felt like there was time that passed, and I missed it. The beginning of this book felt like there should have been a novella before it or at least a preface. Apparently there is a Divergent 1.5, but it is just the retelling of chapter 13 of Divergent from Tobias's point of view. I felt there was this gap of events when this book started, and right there I was sort of put off.
The rest of this book was very slow with little to no payoff for me. I am not a big reader of YA, and I don't care for romance in my books. Now I try to be a romantic husband when I can, but I don't care to read about that kind of stuff in the books I choose. It seemed that there was a lot of back and forth between Tris and Tobias where their relationship was one the rocks. She made him angry but didn't understand why, and then she worried about loosing him. Ok. They are teenagers in love. I get it. Relationships take work, but I just wish there was less of the relationship and more story. Again this might just be me. I know these books are widely popular, but I was expecting more.
All of that aside I kept reading on. I had hopes that Veronica Roth was going to whip out a surprise ending and make this whole journey worth it like she did in Divergent. Nope, that didn't happen either. It was a good ending that of course sets things up for book three, but overall I felt kind of Meh about the whole thing. Usually I really like the second book in trilogies. This is usually when the story takes off because there aren't any characters to build or scenes and events to set. Some of my favorite second books are Two Towers from Lord of the Rings, and Catching Fire from the Hunger Games series. Both books just took off with the story and never let up for me. I was captivated from the very beginning of those. Maybe because of the preconceived expectation I didn't enjoy this like I had hoped.
I give this 2.5 out of 5 stars. I didn't hate this book, and it is by no means one of the worst books I have read, but I expected so much more. Veronica Roth is a talented writer, so it definitely wasn't her style or technique that made this less than thrilling. I just think the story could have been better. Maybe if this book was shorter and some of the filler was cut out I might have enjoyed this more. I will be reading the third and final book because I have come this far and might as well see what happens. I also don't like to leave things unfinished no matter how painful. My hope is that Veronica Roth recaptures my attention and the third book wraps this trilogy up the right way. I'm not in any hurry to finish though, and I don't mind still being in the upper 20s on the wait list at my library. There are other things I am anxious to read right now.