by Veronica Roth

  • Divergent Summary

In a futuristic, dystopian Chicago, society is organized into five factions. Each faction places value solely on a specific virtue, which its members work to cultivate throughout their lives. There is Abnegation, which values selflessness, Amity, which values peace, Erudite, which values knowledge, Candor, which values honesty, and Dauntless, which values bravery. Children are raised in their parents' faction, and once they turn sixteen, they have the option to choose for themselves which faction will be theirs for the rest of their lives, whether it's the one they grew up in or not.

Beatrice Prior is a sixteen-year-old member of Abnegation. She and her brother Caleb, who is not quite a year her elder, take the aptitude test that will tell them which faction they are most suitable for. The test consists of a simulation of a confrontation with a vicious dog. Beatrice shows aptitude for three different factions, Abnegation, Erudite, and Dauntless, and this means she is something called Divergent. She is warned to never tell anyone of her results - it is dangerous to be Divergent. After much contemplation over whether to stay in Abnegation or switch factions, Beatrice chooses to switch to Dauntless, and Caleb moves to Erudite.

In Dauntless, Beatrice changes her name to Tris because she feels it will allow her to start over and become someone else entirely. She makes quick friends with two Candor transfers named Christina and Al, and an Erudite transfer named Will , while three other Candor transfers, Peter , Drew , and Molly , become her enemies. Initiation into this courageous faction involves three stages, and they will be ranked after each one. Only the top ten initiates will become Dauntless members; the rest will fail out and become factionless, forced to live on the streets of the city in poverty. The first stage of initiation involves learning how to fight from their mysterious initiation instructor, Four, and one of the cruel Dauntless leaders, Eric . Because Tris is small, she isn't a particularly adept fighter, but she manages to get by.

Tris earns the respect of many during the initiation tradition of capture the flag, in which she has the idea to climb to the top of a ferris wheel in order to see the other team's location. Four comes with her, and for the first time she realizes the feeling she gets when she's around him. She also earns Eric's respect when she volunteers to take a punishment meant for Al - standing in front of a target while Four throws knives around her.

Visiting Day arrives, and Tris's mother comes to visit her in her new faction. She knows a suspicious amount about the Dauntless compound, which leads Tris to believe that her mother may have originally been Dauntless. She tells Tris to go visit Caleb in Erudite and tell him to research a simulation serum. Tris learns that Abnegation members are now prohibited from entering Erudite. Later that day, Al admits that he likes Tris as more than a friend, but she cannot return the sentiment. When they receive rankings for stage one, Tris is ranked sixth, and is not cut. Peter, however, is unsatisfied with his second place finish, and that night he stabs the first place initiate, Edward , in the eye, forcing him to leave initiation.

As stages two and three of initiation commence, Tris begins to come into her own in Dauntless at last. She goes zip lining down from the Hancock building with the Dauntless-born initiates, shows extreme proficiency in fear simulations, and becomes closer to Four, who slowly starts to open up to her. But tension is brewing between two of the factions, Erudite and Abnegation, and Erudite continuously makes attacks on the Abnegation administration. Initiation is still the most pressing thing to worry about, though, and at the end of stage two she receives a shock; she's ranked number one. Considering her a threat, Peter and Drew attack her with the help of Al, who used to be her friend. Four rescues her before they kill her. Al is devastated with what he's done, and kills himself as a result.

Four at last reveals to Tris his true identity: he is Tobias Eaton, son of abusive Abnegation council representative Marcus. At this point, they officially begin a secret relationship. After a bad day in training, Tris leaves the Dauntless compound without telling anyone. She goes to Erudite to pass on her mother's instructions to Caleb. There, she has a confrontation with Erudite leader Jeanine Matthews , who Tris suspects of colluding with Dauntless to kill the Divergent. When she returns to Dauntless, Tobias warns Tris that Erudite is planning a war against Abnegation and will use Dauntless to fight it.

Initiation day comes, and Tris goes through her final assessment, a simulation containing each one of her fears that she must conquer, one after another. She's extremely successful and ranks first, becoming an official member of Dauntless. However, she later realizes that in the excitement of the day, the Dauntless leaders injected everyone with a simulation serum that day, calling it a tracking device. She knows they must be lying, and that Erudite will use this serum as a simulation to get Dauntless to fight Abnegation for them.

That night, everyone in Dauntless wakes up in a sleepwalking trance except Tris; she can resist the simulation because she's Divergent. Tobias can do the same, and they find each other in the crowd while pretending to be sleepwalking just like the others. But when Eric tries to "accidentally" kill Tobias, the two fight back and are taken to Erudite headquarters, where Jeanine takes Tobias in for simulation testing and sends Tris, who was shot in the shoulder and therefore of no use to her, to be executed. The next morning, Tris is taken to a large tank, similar to the one that appears in her fear simulations, and is to be drowned. However, Tris's mother Natalie rescues her just in time, and takes her to her father and brother. On the way to their hiding place, Mrs. Prior is forced to sacrifice herself in order to ensure that Tris escapes.

Tris realizes the only way to stop the killing is to stop the simulation entirely, so she, her father, her brother, and Marcus Eaton head to the Dauntless control room to shut it down. On the way they come across Peter, who bargains with Tris, saying that if she takes him with her, he'll tell her how to get to the control room. Tris's dad is shot and dies along the way. Tris is devastated, but she keeps going, and eventually makes it to the control room where none other than a serum-controlled Tobias is controlling the simulation. After hearing her voice, he is able to fight off the simulation he's under, and the two turn off the computer and take the data so that the Dauntless will not be able to restart it.

Tris, Tobias, Caleb, Marcus and Peter head out of the city, hoping to find safety in the peaceful Amity compound.

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Divergent Questions and Answers

The Question and Answer section for Divergent is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.

Divergent Chapter 12

They are small and fast.

How does tris use verbal irony on page 66

Sorry, my page numbers don't match yours.

What is Tris' hope for the future of Dauntless?

Tris hopes to become a member of Dauntless in order to join a faction in which she can feel that she belongs, prove that she is courageous and capable, and to lead a more exciting life.

Study Guide for Divergent

Divergent study guide contains a biography of Veronica Roth, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.

  • About Divergent
  • Character List

Essays for Divergent

Divergent essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of Divergent by Veronica Roth.

  • Power and Corruption: A Comparison of Animal Farm and Divergent
  • Tris from 'Divergent' as an Archetypal Hero

Wikipedia Entries for Divergent

  • Introduction
  • Background and setting

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Sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior lives in what was once Chicago but is now a vastly different place from what it used to be. The entire society fits within the city limits and is divided into five factions, each of which has a different set of guidelines and lifestyles that support its goal. The Abnegation faction pursues selflessness, Dauntless practices courage, Candor engages truth, Erudite seeks knowledge, and Amity follows kindness. These factions work together to form a perfect society --- well,  almost  a perfect society.

When citizens reach 16, they undergo an aptitude test that determines the best fit for each person. The following day is the Choosing Ceremony in which each teen must decide the faction he or she will join for the rest of their lives. Most follow in their parents' footsteps, but some choose a different faction, thus cutting off most contact with their loved ones. They have a saying in their society, "'faction over blood;" a person's faction becomes their new family.

So, at 16, Beatrice faces the biggest decision of her life. She has grown up in the Abnegation faction, where all thoughts and deeds focus on selflessness and doing for others. Unfortunately, Beatrice isn't very good at being completely selfless; she's forever getting disapproving looks from her parents and brother. So she's not surprised when her aptitude test doesn't point to Abnegation. She's surprised, though, when her test is inconclusive. This is extremely rare and makes her a Divergent. Her tester advises her never to tell anyone, as being a Divergent is extremely dangerous. Beatrice doesn't understand, and it makes her decision even more difficult. She must decide whether to follow in her parents' footsteps, in which she hasn't been very happy, or turn her back on her family and dare to be courageous. 

On the day of the Choosing Ceremony, Beatrice follows her gut and elects to join Dauntless, the faction of bravery. Next she must undergo a series of initiation procedures in order to become an official member. These procedures are beyond tough, beyond scary, and beyond one's darkest nightmares, both physically and mentally. If she fails, Beatrice will become factionless --- an outcast living on the brink of poverty. But in order to survive, she must find the courage to reinvent herself and face her greatest fears. One of the first things she does is change her name to Tris, signaling a new beginning. She has no idea, though, of the magnitude of what is in store for her, including falling in love. The worst part, unbeknownst to most, is that a mutiny is brewing beneath the surface, and their well-ordered society is about to implode.

Veronica Roth's first novel marks the beginning of a trilogy, opening up a whole new adventure for book lovers. She writes with an intensity that challenges readers to look at their own lives, to consider which faction they might choose, to dream up which nightmares they might face in a similar initiation. She chose to set the story in first person, present tense, which adds to that intensity and energy. Tris is an extremely interesting character and very well rounded, and the story takes a unique turn with the massive emotional transformation she goes through as she reinvents herself. DIVERGENT offers exciting danger, sweet romance, intriguing psychiatric excavations, and nonstop captivating action. Veronica Roth is a welcomed and talented new addition to the YA book world.

Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman on May 3, 2011

the divergent book report

Divergent by Veronica Roth

  • Publication Date: February 11, 2014
  • Genres: Dystopian , Fiction , Thriller , Young Adult 14+
  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
  • ISBN-10: 0062289853
  • ISBN-13: 9780062289858

the divergent book report

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Book Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

the divergent book report

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Thea James is one half of the maniacal duo behind The Book Smugglers. She is Filipina-American, but grew up in Hawaii, Indonesia, and Japan. A full-time book nerd who works in publishing for her day job, Thea currently resides in Astoria, Queens with her partner and rambunctious cat. COOKING FOR WIZARDS, WARRIORS & DRAGONS (available August 31, 2021) is her first cookbook.


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Ooh, nice review. I was a bit frustrated by what you deem the “potato-chip” nature of this book (generally, schlocky action stuff just doesn’t appeal to me) but you nail what’s interesting about Tris. I really did enjoy her as a character!

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Lisa (starmetal oak)

Thanks for the review!

A question about the story: if people have made these factions in order to combat the various reasons they think the world has failed before (greed, cowardice, etc) then why do they limit the intake of new recruits? Is this fleshed out in the book or just a way to create conflict?

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Like Phoebe, I’m not sure I agree with the potato-chip comment, but overall exactly what I thought. 🙂

And I’m reading BEAUTY QUEENS now, too.

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Dear Authors,

Please kill off more of your characters. It makes your OMGDANGER feel more…dangerous. See Connie Willis and Patrick Ness for details.

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@Phoebe & @Jess Tudor – Perhaps I should make the disclaimer that my favorite movie is Die Hard and I am a HUGE fan of the cheesy action movie? Heh. I can completely understand frustrations with the book’s trials and nonstop action for action’s sake, though.

But I gotta admit…I love me some potato chips 😉

@Lisa – Though it’s not really explained in the book, it’s probably safe to assume that in the cases of factions like Candor, Erudite and Dauntless that initiation is so tough and restricted because they want to make sure their new members truly uphold the ideals of that respective clan. To gain membership into Candor, for example, initiates are forced to take some sick, publically humiliating lie-detector test. With Amity and Abnegation, however, I think the bar to entry is lower because they are less sought after factions, and their ideals are more selfless and accepting. If that makes sense?

I agree that this all does sound rather flimsy and fragile, though. The worldbuilding is simplistic and doesn’t really hold together under any stronger level of scrutiny!

That said, it’s a fun book, and I hope you get a chance to read it 🙂

@Raych – I’d like to sign your letter, please! So. So. TRUE.

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Grr there are 16 people ahead of me at the library. Can’t wait to read this!

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Ms. Roth isn’t afraid to kill people and that’s one of my biggest problem with many current YA “dystopias” – this lack of teeth.

I couldn’t agree more with this. What little I read of Divergent wasn’t really for me, but it’s good to know there are authors out there who are willing to go a bit outside the norm for YA.

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I’ve been holding off on picking this one up, even though its set in Chicago and I live in the Chicago area , because the whole Faction business makes very little sense to me. I do like that it has “more teeth”, as you say, than many of the other YA dystopias out there (and like you, I have a weakness for dystopias and post-apocolyptic scenarios), but the weak worldbuilding makes me not feel the urge to read this title. Also, I am trying to stay away from incomplete trilogies for a while.

I am SO with you on this dystopia craze; so many people seem to want to cash in on this latest phenom yet so few of them seem to want to do their homework in order to make their world believable.

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I know what you mean. I definitely have to be in the right mood for dystopias of the potato chip variety, but this review definitely makes me want to give Divergent a chance if nothing else.

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Ebony McKenna

I read this recently and it was pretty absorbing. I liked the idea of factions and was especially pleased with the book having a decent ending. Yes, there is more to come, but this book at least ended in the right place. It’s a big ask to finish a book with a sense of completion, while also leaving scope for further adventures.

PS, speaking of factions, I’m kind of hankering to re-read Brave New World now. That book rocked my world.

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Marleen Gagnon

This looks like a really good read. I’ve gotta get it. Thanks for all you do.

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I actually agreed with the obsessive nature of this book. I didn’t realize I had read so much in one sitting until I was interrupted. I look forward to Roth’s future works, I think this book was very good.

But, the factions never make sense for me in the book, because there are too many other types of people out there for me, and overall, the world itself is not very well built (however, I really think that will come in the next book as there is some foreshadowing). I actually think the killing off of the characters was kinda weak, like old Star Trek red shirts. We barely know these people who are killed, so why do we care if they die?

But on a totally different note, how is this really considered dystopian? Is this a repressive or controlling state? These people get to choose which faction they will live in, regardless of what the test says. The can even leave the factions and live outside the government. This is what the book made me think of most when I was finished reading it, lol.

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What’s this trilogy you keep alluding to? I can’t think of anything…

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Ah it’s good to know you liked this Thea! Looking forward to reading this now. 🙂

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Thanks for the great review. I was fortunate enough to be the first to check out DIVERGENT when it hit the library. I loved this book. Will be in line for the sequel. 😀

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*The Trilogy That Must Not Be Named*

I just barely kept my snort of amusement from popping out. 😀

*Tris is not your usual Mary Sue. She’s selfish. She’s manipulative. She’s vindictive as hell – and I LOVED that about this book. I mean, at one point, when a character asks for her forgiveness, which she coldly refuses. Really coldly. I mean, holy masked avenger, Batman. It’s brutal, but refreshing (since these heroines are so often little goody-two-shoes that forgive even the most heinous acts).*

OH. Oh my. Me likey.

Oy – 500 pages, though! Wince.

*Though entertaining, this book does not provoke, incite, or demand a closer look at society*

Eh, I think I could be OK with that – too many dystopian works, whether YA or not, are so heavy. Maybe one that’s more on the entertainment side would be refreshing.

Awesome review, as usual. 😉

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Thanks so much for recommending this book Thea, I downloaded from iBooks and read it in a night! I look forward to her next offering. 🙂

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Amy @ Turn the Page

Brilliant review! I agree with your thoughts (though your review is far better written than my own lol!). I liked that Tris had flaws, but I still never exactly warmed to her as a character.

The relationship between Tris and Four was good – until it suddenly fast forward near the end and turned into the typical insta-love all over again!

I like an author who is willing to kill of characters – but I wasn’t feeling some of the character deaths at the the end – they felt… kind of pointless. But it was still an enjoyable read 🙂 Not fantastic but entertaining!

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Holly (Lily's Bookshelf)

I’m really looking forward to reading this one! Great review! 🙂

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I’ve just finished this book and it was very entertaining, read in it sooooo quickly too. A definite pocorn read and I am very much looking forward to the next installment. Spot on review!

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I have read this book 3 times…Now I’m doing a book review on it – the review is EXTREMELY helpful!!!

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Still unsure about reading this one. 😐

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I enjoyed your review. The way that you told the story clearly was very well done. Also your oppinion on the novel was really well formatted. I totally agree with you, how can a world be filled with humans striving to become only one thing. It’s impossible… I’ve done a review of the novel aswell if you want to check it out 🙂

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Good review.

I have to agree – I didn’t care for the flimsy pretext of the factions. I am hoping Allegiant will shed some light on the odd situation.

As for the character of Tris, I found her to be inconsistent. The author seems to have allotted her whatever traits were convenient for that particular chapter of the story.

All in all – a good, quick read, but nothing substantial.

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Warning: The following post may be a too long, boring and pseudo feminist opinion of one unimportant person!

Well Reviewed!

I like that your review is well balanced in terms of criticism and praise! I find I agree with a lot of your points on where this book succeeds (pacing, action sequences) and where it fails (you can’t question the world, or it shatters). However I would disagree that Tris is an original take on Mary-Sue. In fact, I think more and more authors are relying on imperfection to create perfected Mary-Sues.

Tris is regularly commenting on her plain looks. A trend that started with the wonderfully dubbed “Trilogy that shall not be named!” As if, stating someone isn’t jaw-droppingly attractive (while still giving conventionally attractive attributes) gives them more character. This seems to be a YA thing more than others, as I find adult fiction of a similar nature rarely delves deeply into looks after initial description (with the possible exception of fantasy creatures (fairies, elves, etc) or female protagonists under a male authors pen). In fact, because of this new emerging trope one of my favourite lines in the story was (***Spoiler***) Four commenting that if all he wanted was sex, he wouldn’t have gone to her first. (Spoiler end) One because it was funny, and two because it so fully shows why authors think it takes away the mary-sue trope. She’s not desirable, so she can’t be perfect.

Secondly I found that Tris’ personality is now becoming another trait seeing more and more in YA literature with female leads. While one part of me fully enjoys that female protagonists are being featured and given attitudes beyond the disney princess; this dichotomy of princess or badass is just as problematic in creating fully realized female characters. I loved it with Katniss, because it was justified: She is poor, she is oppressed and she truly doesn’t understand giving without receiving. To her, survival and self-preservation justifies any means; yet she is still successfully kind. Her world supports that. In Tris’ case, she does have food, she lives in a world where essentially her father is the government and literally taught to only understand selflessness. The fact that she is then made so cold to differentiate her from others, makes her a Mary-Sue. She has no reason to be cruel and vindictive other than because in the eyes of the author and by extension readers: it makes her better. It makes her more than the average: She’s perfect because she’s tough, because she has undesirable traits she recognizes but doesn’t mind. In any other character, these traits would make them the villain. If done well an interesting machiavellian villain, but villain nonetheless. Lastly, she is instantly the attraction of the similarly perfect male lead without reason. (You mentioned this one) This I can overlook, after all people (especially at the characters given ages) can and occasionally do get enamored with a look. It may be even be justified as she is probably the only other person who can share a similar history, and present with Four.

I personally found myself uninterested in Tris as a character after a few chapters in dauntless: I already knew her. What kept me reading was the pace you were talking about, and the hopes something more interesting and unexpected happens. Her mother interested me, the other transfers interested me. We know Tris chose, but why did they? They weren’t special, divergent. Yet, we never really get to know anything about them.

In conclusion: Potato chips indeed!

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Just read Divergent… and I had a slight problem with it that no one seems to address: If Caleb is Beatrice’s older brother (as she states in the first few pages), and if the Choosing Ceremony is for 16yos, then why is Caleb at the Choosing Ceremony at the same time as Beatrice? Is he newly turned 17 and missed the cutoff date for the previous year’s Ceremony? Tbh I nearly stopped reading the book because it seemed like such a huge thing to make the reader puzzle out.


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ggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggg An essay on divergent

In this essay I will consider the social, economic and political factors of divergent. Advancments in divergent can be linked to many areas. While it is becoming a hot topic for debate, it is impossible to overestimate its impact on modern thought. It is an unfortunate consequence of our civilizations history that divergent is rarely given rational consideration by so called ‘babies’, who just don’t like that sort of thing. With the primary aim of demonstrating my considerable intellect I will now demonstrate the complexity of the many faceted issue that is divergent.

Social Factors

Society begins and ends with divergent. When Thucictholous said ‘people only know one thing’ [1] he globalised an issue which had remained buried in the hearts of our ancestors for centuries. While deviating from the norm will always cause unrest amongst ones peers, divergent cleary plays a significant role amongst the developing middle classes.

Of paramount importance to any study of divergent within its context, is understanding the ideals of society. Society is powered by peer pressure, one of the most powerful forces in the world. As long as peer pressure uses its power for good, divergent will have its place in society.

Economic Factors

Increasingly economic growth and innovation are being attributed to divergent. We will primarily be focusing on the JTB-Guide-Dog model, which I hope will be familiar to most readers. Inflation

Clearly the graphs demonstrates a strong correlation. Why is this? Seemingly inflation will continue to follow divergent for the foreseeable future. Supply Side Economic Tax Cuts Tax deductions could turn out to be a risky tactic.

Political Factors

The media have made politics quite a spectacle. Looking at the spectrum represented by a single political party can be reminiscent of comparing divergentilisation, as it’s become known, and one’s own sense of morality.

It is always enlightening to consider the words of a legend in their own life time, Demetrius T. Time ‘People in glass houses shouldn’t through parties.’ [2] Primarily, he is referring to divergent. To paraphrase, the quote is saying ‘divergent wins votes.’ Simple as that. While divergent may be a giant amongst men, is it a dwarf amongst policy? I hope not.

To conclude, divergent parades along man’s streets and man waves back. It enlightens our daily lives, ensures financial stability and always chips in.

I’ll leave you with this quote from Stevie Jackson: ‘At first I was afraid I was petrified. Thinking I could never live without divergent by my side.’ [3] An essay on divergent

Increasingly economic growth and innovation are being attributed to divergent. We will primarily be focusing on the JTB-Guide-Dog model, which I hop

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I also did not find myself respecting the protagonist, Tris. I just finished the second book of the Divergent trilogy. Although I was wary of her character before, when *spoiler* Tris turns down a position in leadership solely so that Four can take over the faction *end spoiler*, I actually had to put the book down and walk away in disgust. Why does she think Four is better than her? Why, no matter what major action Tris takes in the story, does she give others credit for it? Even in the many fight scenes, we catch her claiming that it was Four who taught her how, Four who somehow was responsible for saving her life. And a lot of the time, he does end up saving her life, because he is the stronger, more sensible character.

So what is this supposed to be teaching the young girls reading this book? That they should be weak and expect less of themselves than their boyfriends? That the best way to act is to be a stereotypical girl and depend on others? Or is the author, Veronica Roth, trying to prove the stupidity of sixteen year old girls? If this is the case, she should not have tried to make Tris so real and widely relatable.

Roth and Tris have the third and final book in the series to change my mind about this.

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Although it’s a good read, and I love Tris, I love the idea, the setting, the factions, the love between the 2 main people, and yes the idea of being Dauntless sounds cool. I can’t help but compare it to to said Trilogy, something about said Trilogy just sores miles above this set of books. Thumbs up Roth, can’t wait to read others.

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Francesca Moore

This review summed up exactly how I felt about the book. I loved how fast paced it was and I loved the fact that the protagonist never become a superhero by the end of it, that way it felt more realistic. I’ve just watched the film and I wasn’t amazed by it, felt the book was so much better. I’m pondering whether to read books 2 and 3 of the series now as I’ve heard they are not as good as the first.

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I’m sorry, I have to be the critic here. As a fellow writer reading through Divergent currently, Veronica certainly is creative, to an extent. Her writing style… it’s pure childish. She has the level of a 10th grade student. A lot of places I have to reread because the wording is off. Not only that, but her constant short sentences are annoying. And Tris and Four’s romance is disgustingly cliche. Tris, as a character, is both whinny and hypocritical. She doesn’t want her friends to betray her, but she wants to make them jealous? Really? And why exactly is she Divergent? She’s not selfless, she does nice things in remembrance of her family, which would be selfish, wouldn’t it? And she’s not really intelligent, honest, or loving. I can’t even remember what third faction she received.

All in all, the idea seems creative enough, but the only reason I’m powering through is just to be able to say I read it. I’m not even bothering picking up the next two books. You can count on that.

Book Review: Divergent | Books, TV, and Me

[…] The Book Smugglers […]

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I can’t believe Tris was even considered to be a Mary Sue. A book character for an authour’s own created universe can’t be a Mary Sue. Plus she’s HUMAN.

And potato-chip nature? Have you even looked at the themes of the book? They’re deep af.

Divergent by Veronica Roth | One Book Two

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This book is such a kind of amazing. Can somebody tell me total part of this serie????

Becoming Napoleon – Calling All Skeletons

[…] interest to me, however I have felt a certain level of transformation with regard to, say, Beatrice Prior, or Tris as she would prefer. One could argue that artists have magic powers so to speak. They know […]

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this review is very detailed and provides quiet a lot of information to satisfy our needs of information . to whomever did this , i show a lot of respect for it seems to have a lot of effort and time placed into it. all i would like to say is that however that it may provide information, it does not provide all information on related topics that all book reviews require to have on a needing bases. i hope my information supports future reviews 🙂

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My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different page and thought I may as well check things out. I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to checking out your web page again.

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the divergent book report

Veronica Roth

Everything you need for every book you read..

The novel takes places in a futuristic version of Chicago, Illinois, in which the population has been split into five factions: Abnegation, Amity, Candor, Dauntless, and Erudite. Each faction has a different “persona” and a different role in the city. Abnegation people are plain and modest, and go into governance; Amity people are kind and nurturing, and go into welfare; Candor people are honest, and make good lawyers; the Dauntless are brave, and work as soldiers and guards; the Erudite are intelligent, and study science and technology.

As the novel begins, Beatrice Prior —a 16-year-old girl living in Abnegation—is preparing for her Choosing Ceremony. At the age of 16, everyone in the city is made to take an aptitude test that determines what kind of person they are; i.e., which faction they belong to. Afterwards, the 16-year-olds attend a Choosing Ceremony, where they choose the faction to which they’ll belong for the rest of their lives. Beatrice worries that she’ll find out that she’s better suited for a faction other than Abnegation, thus disappointing her brother, Caleb Prior , and her parents, Andrew Prior and Natalie Prior . Beatrice is especially scared of disappointing her father, Andrew, an important government official, and Andrew’s friend Marcus , another influential government leader.

During her aptitude test, Beatrice is given a hallucinogenic serum. She sees a series of visions: a dog attacking a child, a man who interrogates her about her knowledge of a ”brutal murderer,” etc. At the end of the test, Beatrice’s examiner, a woman named Tori , tells Beatrice that she’s Divergent : a forbidden mental state that allows Beatrice to move between different factions. Tori makes Beatrice promise never to tell anyone about her Divergence—she warns that the government wants to kill off all Divergent people.

At the Choosing Ceremony, Beatrice sees her brother Caleb choose Erudite, instead of the usual Abnegation. Afterwards, Beatrice chooses Dauntless. Although she’s excited and curious about Dauntless, she’s also worried that her parents will be devastated by the loss of their two children: after 16-year-olds choose their faction, they’re almost never allowed to visit other factions.

Beatrice is taken to her new community in Dauntless. There, she meets the Dauntless leader, Max , as well as Eric , a young, frightening government official, and Four , a charismatic young man who trains new recruits. Beatrice renames herself “Tris,” and quickly makes friends with Dauntless recruits from other factions, such as Christina , Will , and Al .

The new recruits begin their training, competing for a small number of spots reserved for the most highly-ranked trainees. Four coaches Tris and her peers through combat exercises. Tris is a poor fighter—she’s no match for opponents like Peter , a huge, sadistic recruit. In her first fight with Peter, Peter sends her to the hospital. Afterwards, Tris resolves to train even harder. She distinguishes herself in a citywide game of capture-the-flag that’s designed to measure recruits’ abilities. Tris climbs to the top of the Chicago Ferris Wheel, allowing her team to surprise-attack its opponents. Tris’s bravery and quick thinking impress Four, as well as her fellow recruits. Four begins flirting with Tris—exciting Tris, but also making her a little uncomfortable.

Tris stands up for a weak-willed trainee named Al, offering to take his place in a sadistic punishment that Eric devises for him. At the same time, Tris begins to enjoy her combat training more and more—she doesn’t feel the same sense of mercy or caution that she was taught in Abnegation for so many years.

Tris gets a visit from her mother, Natalie Prior, and Natalie tells Tris that she knows about Tris’s Divergence. Natalie also tells Tris to ask Caleb to research serum when Tris next sees Caleb—Tris has no idea why Natalie makes this request. Slowly, Tris realizes that Natalie was Dauntless before she chose to live in Abnegation.

Eric releases a ranking of the new recruits: Tris is ranked low, while Peter is ranked second. That night, Peter stabs the top-ranked recruit, a boy named Edward , in the eye. Afterwards, Edward drops out of Dauntless. Then the recruits enter the second part of their training: psychological training. They’re injected with hallucinogenic serum and forced to experience the things that frighten them most. Privately, Four conducts a “fear simulation” with Tris, and discovers that Tris is good at resisting the effects of the serum. Four recognizes that Tris is Divergent, since Divergents can resist mental manipulation. Tris asks Four how he knows so much about Divergence, but Four doesn’t reply.

Reports begin to circulate about how Abnegation leaders—Andrew Prior, and his friend Marcus, in particular—have become corrupt. Although she’s infuriated by these reports, which she regards as propaganda, Tris concentrates on her training. She bonds with other recruits, such as Uriah and Marlene , who were born in Dauntless, rather than transferring from another faction. When the second round of rankings are released, Tris is at the top of her class. That night, Peter and a gang of followers try to kill Tris by throwing her into a chasm, but Four saves her life. Tris is shocked to discover that one of the people who tried to kill her was Al. Al, Tris realizes, has come to hate Tris for making him look weak. Tris angrily tells Al that she’ll kill him if he ever tries to talk to her again. Shortly afterwards, Al commits suicide by throwing himself into the chasm.

Tris proceeds with her psychological training. Four allows her to witness his own “fear landscape.” Tris notices that Four has only four fears—hence his nickname. One of Four’s fears is his father, Marcus, who abused him with a belt when he was a child. Four’s real name, Tris realizes, is Tobias —he used to live in Abnegation. Following the fear simulation, Tobias kisses Tris, and Tris kisses back. Tobias reveals that he knows Tris is Divergent, cementing their bond.

Tris fails badly at her own fear landscape, despite the early promise she’d shown. Frustrated with herself, she goes to visit Caleb, who’s now living in Erudite. Caleb tells Tris that he’s tempted to believe the things that Jeanine , his leader, had been writing about their father and about Abnegation.

Tris and her peers prepare for their final challenge: a fear simulation. In her fear simulation, Tris performs very well, mastering her own fears—including fear of having sex with Tobias. As a result of her good performance, Tris graduates at the top of the rankings. She and her peers are injected with a chemical, supposedly to allow Eric and Max to track their movements. Afterwards, Tris and Tobias have sex.

The next morning, Tris wakes up to find that her friends have been transformed into mindless Dauntless soldiers, thanks to the tracking chemical. Tris is immune to this mind control, however, due to her Divergence. She’s able to pretend to be a “zombie” as Eric and Max send their new soldiers into Abnegation. In Abnegation, Tris joins with Tobias—who’s also revealed to be Divergent, and therefore immune to the effects of the chemical. Soldiers capture Tris and Tobias and bring them to Jeanine, the mastermind behind the mind control scheme. Jeanine reveals her villainous plan—to use her new soldiers to conquer all of the city—then orders her soldiers to kill Tris and Tobias.

Tris is taken to a tank, where she’s to be drowned. Before this can happen, however, her mother saves her. Natalie sneaks Tris out of the building, and sends her to a secret compound where Andrew, Caleb, and Marcus are hiding out. Before she can leave with Tris, however, Natalie is shot and killed.

Tris joins up with Andrew, Caleb, and Marcus: they plan to break into the Dauntless headquarters and shut down the computers that control the soldiers. Together, they manage to infiltrate the compound and make their way to the computer room, but not before Andrew dies protecting Tris. In the control room, Tris finds herself facing Tobias, now controlled by a new, stronger mind control drug. Tobias raises a gun to Tris’s head, but Tris is able to convince Tobias to put the gun down by saying, “It’s me.” Freed from his mind control, Tobias switches off the computers, foiling Jeanine’s plot. The novel ends with Tobias declaring his love for Tris.

The logo.

By Veronica Roth

Veronica Roth's 'Divergent' is an action-packed young adult novel, with complex themes revolving around self-discovery and rebellion against oppressive systems.

About the Book


Article written by Michael Chude

B.Sc. degree in parasitology and entomology from Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka.

Born into Abnegation, a faction known for its rejection of worldliness and the pursuit of material comforts, Tris Prior must prove to her new family and herself that she belongs in her new faction, Dauntless. ‘Divergent’ by Veronica Roth  is a multi-layered narrative of bravery, rebellion against rigid social structures, and self-discovery.  

In ‘ Divergent,’ tattoos serve as a conspicuous mark of identity, showing a person’s identification and dedication to their chosen faction. During the initiation process, people who have come of age and have chosen their new factions undergo a ritual ceremony where they are tattooed with the symbols of their faction. These tattoos are meticulously designed to represent the essence of each faction, reflecting their core principles and beliefs.

More than mere body art, tattoos have deep meanings for the characters in ‘ Divergent.’ The tattoos embody the values and ideals that shape the lives of the faction’s members. The bravery and fearlessness of the Dauntless faction are represented by various designs that symbolize courage, strength, and the overcoming of fears, all inked in black. The tattoos were also created to remind the members of the factions of the expectations placed upon them and to encourage them to live up to their faction’s values.

Tris Prior uses her tattoos to mark the milestones in her life. She also uses her tattoos as important markers in her search for self-identity; she also uses them as a declaration of her newfound independence from the life she knew as a child in Abnegation. After each milestone in her life, she gets a tattoo. Each tattoo has a different, specific symbolic meaning to her.

For example, she gets a tattoo of the Dauntless symbol, a ring of fire, to celebrate the fact that she’s finally feeling at home among the Dauntless. In general, though, Tris’ tattoos symbolize her desire to form an identity for herself: tattoos remind her who she is, and inspire her to be strong and true to her principles. Thus, her first tattoo represents her family, symbolizing her continued allegiance to her old life in Abnegation; her second tattoo is Dauntless, symbolizing her love for her new community.

Within the restrictive, rigid, and factional system that defines the dystopian society created by Veronica Roth in ‘ Divergent,’ divergence becomes a force that defies the limitations of prescribed virtues. It disrupts the neatly organized lives of citizens, threatening the delicate balance of control created and meticulously maintained by the leaders. Those who are Divergent possess a unique gift—a mosaic of traits from multiple factions—rendering them unpredictable, elusive, and, most importantly, resistant to manipulation.

As a Divergent, the book’s protagonist lacks strong feelings of allegiance to any one of the five factions. Instead, she has qualities that align her with more than one of the factions. Divergence also suggests a unique kind of mental state that is yet to be fully explained to the reader, as Divergent people like Tris and Tobias can resist mind control and hallucinations that affect those with more clear allegiances. Although Tris thought she was the only Divergent in her city, she soon began to discover that others like her struggle with their identity and their loyalties. She also discovers that her mother is Divergent.

Divergent people cannot conform to factional expectations, making them resistant to indoctrination. These qualities ignite the flames of rebellion and hope. Divergent individuals emerge as the champions of individuality who shatter the shackles of societal expectations by daring to question the suffocating pressure to conform. In doing so, they unveil the strength that lies within embracing one’s distinctiveness.

Criticisms of Divergent

One frequent criticism of the book ‘Divergent’ is its overall unoriginal concept. Other works exist that have explored the idea of a dystopian society divided into factions based on personality traits or virtues, including books such as Lois Lowry’s ‘ The Giver .’ Many critics argue that ‘ Divergent ‘ fails to bring fresh ideas or a unique perspective to the genre, relying on familiar tropes and plot elements.

Readers and critics alike have also expressed their disappointment in the lack of depth of the worldbuilding in the ‘ Divergent ‘ book. The factions and their corresponding virtues are seen as somewhat simplistic and shabbily explored, leaving aspects of the society and its history underdeveloped. The setting of post-apocalyptic Chicago, while intriguing, may not be fully realized or explained to the satisfaction of some readers.

Divergent: A Gripping Story of Self-discovery

The Divergent by Veronica Roth

Book Title: Divergent

Book Description: In Veronica Roth's "Divergent," young adults are thrust into a world of high-stakes action and intricate dilemmas. Centered on themes of self-discovery and resistance against a repressive regime, the novel captivates readers with its intense narrative and thought-provoking questions about individuality and societal norms.

Book Author: Veronica Roth

Book Edition: First Edition

Book Format: Hardcover

Publisher - Organization: Katherine Tegen Books

Date published: April 26, 2011

Illustrator: Joel Tippie

ISBN: 0-06-202402-7

Number Of Pages: 487

  • Writing Style
  • Lasting Effect of Reader

In Veronica Roth’s ‘ Divergent ,’ a dystopian society divided into factions based on virtues forces sixteen-year-old Tris Prior to make a life-altering choice. Leaving behind her selfless Abnegation faction, she embraces her newfound identity as a brave member of Dauntless, as she hides a secret that will change her society forever.

  • Gripping and engaging plot.
  • Strong female protagonist.
  • Explores concepts like identity and individuality.
  • Lack of originality.
  • Underdeveloped and unexplored worldbuilding.
  • Simplistic characterization.


About Michael Chude

Michael Chude has years of experience writing flash fiction and reviewing books with his book club members. He is also an avid reader who loves great stories and extensive world-building.


Cite This Page

Chude, Michael " Divergent Review ⭐️ " Book Analysis , . Accessed 3 April 2024.

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171 pages • 5 hours read

A modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, SuperSummary offers high-quality Study Guides with detailed chapter summaries and analysis of major themes, characters, and more. For select classroom titles, we also provide Teaching Guides with discussion and quiz questions to prompt student engagement.

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Chapters 36-39

Character Analysis

Symbols & Motifs

Important Quotes

Essay Topics

Discussion Questions

Summary and Study Guide

Divergent is the first installment in a science-fiction trilogy, and is narrated by a 16 year old girl called Beatrice Prior. The setting is a futuristic city which, though not specified in the novel, closely resembles Chicago.  The city has been split into five factions: Abnegation, Dauntless, Erudite, Amity, and Candor. The idea behind this split is that human conflict has not been caused by political ideology, race, religion, or nationalism but by differences between personality types. This prompted people to form factions in an attempt to focus on more positive values. For example, Candor sees dishonesty as the source of conflict and therefore prioritizes telling the truth.

Beatrice has spent her whole life living with her parents and brother in Abnegation, but she has never felt as though she fits in. She recognizes that this faction must look ideal from the outside, as it offers a peaceful existence and everyone helps one another. However, she finds its uniformity confining and does not believe that she is sufficiently selfless to belong in this faction. 

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At the start of the novel, Beatrice, like other people her age, is due to undergo an aptitude test which is supposed to indicate the faction to which she is best suited. This will be followed by a choosing ceremony, in which she will make the ultimate choice: to stay with her family in Abnegation or transfer to a new faction in which she will spend the rest of her life. This is not a choice to be made lightly, as the faction to which a person belongs is seen to be a critical part of who they are and is deemed more important than family. To be factionless is to live a menial, impoverished existence with no sense of belonging, and this is regarded as a fate worse than death.

Though Beatrice completes her aptitude test, her results are puzzling: the test is intended to rule out one faction after another in a linear manner, yet Beatrice shows an aptitude for Abnegation, Dauntless, and Erudite. This is not merely an inconclusive result though; it also marks Beatrice out as Divergent. Beatrice does not understand what this means at first, but she understands that it is seen as dangerous and that she should not reveal her status to anyone.

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During the choosing ceremony, Beatrice witnesses her brother—whom she had thought to be a perfect member of Abnegation—transfer to Erudite, and she is shocked. This makes her all the more conscious that she needs to transfer out of Abnegation, though she has no inclination to join Erudite. As is specified near the beginning of the novel, Erudite have been publishing damning reports about Abnegation and there is no love lost between these two factions. One of the root causes is that, though representatives from other factions can have a say in meetings, Abnegation members alone form the city’s governing council. This is because members of this faction are seen to possess the requisite selflessness, leadership skills, and moral fortitude necessary to make important political decisions. However, Erudite resents this monopoly and does not believe that the values of Abnegation adequately represent other factions.

With Erudite out of the question, Beatrice pledges allegiance to the faction to Dauntless, the faction to which she is most drawn. This is a faction that emphasizes strength and courage, and Beatrice has been fascinated by the sight of Dauntless students (who wear black and have multiple tattoos and piercings) leaping from the passing train to attend school. Still, she feels bad about leaving her family, and her father (who had assumed that both of his children would stay in their native faction) looks at her with an accusatory glare. Her mother, however, has already said that she will love her no matter what, and she smiles at Beatrice as she leaves.

Dauntless initiates are expected to hit the ground running, and Beatrice immediately finds herself engaged in nerve-wracking tasks such as jumping from trains and tall buildings. The training process begins with physical tasks such as fighting and target practice, before moving on to facing one’s fears in simulations much like the aptitude test. Beatrice quickly makes friends with some of the other initiates such as Will and Christina, though the faction also includes bullies such as Peter and his sidekicks Molly and Drew.  In addition, Beatrice renames herself Tris to signify the new life that she has embarked upon in Dauntless.  

There are two training instructors: Eric and a young man who goes by the nickname “Four.” Eric is ruthless and brutal, whereas Four is more reserved and intelligent. Tris finds herself attracted to Four, and the feeling proves to be mutual. Four’s true identity is finally revealed when he allows Tris to experience his fear landscape: a simulation that all Dauntless members must go through and that requires facing one’s worst fears. From his fear landscape, Tris learns that Four is in fact Tobias Eaton , who is the son of one of the high-ranking officials in Abnegation. Erudite have been reporting that Tobias left Abnegation because of his father’s cruelty, and this particular claim proves to be correct.

Tobias informs Tris that Dauntless did not used to be so brutal and competitive but, six years ago the leaders changed and instigated a new regime. Eric is an ideal match for Dauntless in its present guise, but Tobias has a different outlook. He believes that selflessness and bravery can be the same thing; moreover, he does not believe in splitting up personality traits into factions, or that the values of one faction are better than those of another.  Indeed, the faults of the faction system reach crisis point when Tobias and Tris realize that Erudite are planning war against Abnegation. Furthermore, Erudite have recruited Dauntless to help them, promising that they will be given a spot in the new government in exchange for their help.

Tris’s ranking has climbed higher and higher throughout the initiation period, and, once she has faced her own fear landscape, she finishes as the top-ranked initiate. However, the celebration period is short lived, as Tris realizes that the serum that Eric has administered to all members of Dauntless (supposedly to track them should they go outside the compound unattended) is intended to create an army of brainwashed soldiers. Sure enough, the Dauntless follow orders to file into the city and start killing members of the Abnegation council. It is also at this juncture that Tris realizes why Divergents are seen as dangerous: they cannot be controlled. This is shown by Tris’s—and Tobias’s—immunity to the serum.

Tris and Tobias are captured by Erudite guards but Tris is rescued by her mother, who is also Divergent (she had originally transferred from Dauntless to the safer faction of Abnegation, to minimize the danger associated with her true status). Tris’s mother sacrifices herself so that Tris can run away and join the other refugees from Abnegation; including her father and brother. Tobias, meanwhile, has been administered a new serum developed by Erudite that can alter what he sees and hears. So, while Divergents’ minds cannot be controlled, Erudite have found a way of manipulating them indirectly. This means that Tobias now sees Tris as an enemy.

Tris and the other escapees embark on a final mission to enter the Dauntless compound, with Tris and her father making their way to the control room. This is an extremely dangerous mission, and Tris’s father loses his life while fighting the guards. However, Tris manages to make her way to the control room, where she finds Tobias. He is poised to shoot her at first, but he manages to overcome the simulation and shut down the computer program that is controlling the members of Dauntless.

The city is now in chaos, and Tris and the other survivors make their way to the refuge of Amity. As Tris reflects on her experiences, she realizes that Tobias was right: self-sacrifice can be an act of bravery (as demonstrated by her parents), and she herself is not as selfish as she imagined. As for the future, Tris has no home or sense of certainty, but she knows that Dauntless and Erudite are bound to come looking for her and her fellow escapees.  Still, above all else, Tris has shown herself to be a fighter. 

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  1. Divergent: Full Book Summary | SparkNotes

    Divergent Full Book Summary. Divergent is set in the future, in a dystopian version of Chicago that has been divided into five factions: Abnegation, Candor, Amity, Dauntless, and Erudite. The protagonist and narrator is a sixteen-year-old girl from Abnegation named Beatrice Prior. The novel opens with Beatrice’s mother cutting her hair.

  2. Divergent Summary | GradeSaver

    Divergent Summary. In a futuristic, dystopian Chicago, society is organized into five factions. Each faction places value solely on a specific virtue, which its members work to cultivate throughout their lives. There is Abnegation, which values selflessness, Amity, which values peace, Erudite, which values knowledge, Candor, which values ...

  3. Divergent |

    Publication Date: February 11, 2014. Genres: Dystopian, Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult 14+. Paperback: 576 pages. Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books. ISBN-10: 0062289853. ISBN-13: 9780062289858. Sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior faces the biggest decision of her life when she must choose which of the five factions to join that make up their society.

  4. Book Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth - The Book Smugglers

    Title: Divergent Author: Veronica Roth Genre: Dystopian, Speculative Fiction, Young Adult Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books (Harper Teen) Publication Date: May 2011 Paperback: 487 Pages In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave ...

  5. Summary of Divergent by Veronica Roth | Book Analysis

    Written by Michael Chude. B.Sc. degree in parasitology and entomology from Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka. ‘ Divergent ‘ is a story of how a sixteen-year-old is caught in the middle of an identity crisis, a power-hungry maniac, and teenage love. Veronica Roth’s ‘Divergent‘ is a captivating young adult dystopian novel that catapults ...

  6. Divergent by Veronica Roth Plot Summary | LitCharts

    Divergent Summary. Next. Chapter 1. The novel takes places in a futuristic version of Chicago, Illinois, in which the population has been split into five factions: Abnegation, Amity, Candor, Dauntless, and Erudite. Each faction has a different “persona” and a different role in the city. Abnegation people are plain and modest, and go into ...

  7. Divergent Themes and Analysis | Book Analysis

    Style, Tone and Figurative Language. In Veronica Roth’s ‘Divergent,’ the writing style, tone, and use of figurative language are pivotal in creating an atmosphere of tension, intrigue, and exploration within the dystopian narrative. Roth’s writing style exhibits a descriptive quality that vividly creates a dystopian world in the minds ...

  8. Divergent (Divergent, #1) by Veronica Roth | Goodreads

    During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris ...

  9. Divergent Review: A Gripping Story of Self-discovery

    Book Title: Divergent Book Description: In Veronica Roth's "Divergent," young adults are thrust into a world of high-stakes action and intricate dilemmas. Centered on themes of self-discovery and resistance against a repressive regime, the novel captivates readers with its intense narrative and thought-provoking questions about individuality and societal norms.

  10. Divergent Summary and Study Guide | SuperSummary

    Overview. Divergent is the first installment in a science-fiction trilogy, and is narrated by a 16 year old girl called Beatrice Prior. The setting is a futuristic city which, though not specified in the novel, closely resembles Chicago. The city has been split into five factions: Abnegation, Dauntless, Erudite, Amity, and Candor.