Veronica Roth’s novel Divergent is an incredible dystopian story about Tris’s (Beatrice), self discovery and the true meaning of courage. The future version of Chicago that Tris has been living in has been peaceful for years. Her society has divided up into five faction to ensure that everyone lives peacefully. The factions are: Candor (honesty is the only way), Abnegation (always being selfless), Dauntless (putting bravery before everything), Amity (living peacefully at all times), and Erudite (continually seeking knowledge). Tris was born into the Abnegation faction of her society. This means that she puts selflessness above everything. However, it has never been an easy task for Tris and at her Choosing ceremony she has to decide if she is Abnegation or Dauntless. This one decision alters the course of her life and perhaps her entire society’s philosophies and well being.
This book is great! I was slightly concerned in the beginning of the book because it was a little slow moving as we learned about the different factions and met Tris. However, this quickly changed once she chose a faction. I loved how Roth developed her characters through the book. Tris started out so meek and unsure of herself and grew into a force to be reckoned with. Not only did she become strong physically but her beliefs of right and wrong became clearer to her even as things grew more complicated. I also loved the drama that comes with the question, does the cute boy hate me or like me? This is such a universal question, whether it be in a contemporary fiction, fantasy, or dystopian novel no one ever seems to know who likes who. Okay, we knew Four liked Tris, but it was fun to watch it play out anyway. I am really excited to see what happens inInsurgent. The ending of Divergent got really crazy really fast and I am sure Insurgent is going to dive right into the action. This is a must read for any YA enthusiast.
In Louise Penny’s novel How the Light GetsIn things are still unsettled for Inspector Gamache. Most of his star detectives have left the department and he still hasn’t spoken to his old friend Jean-Guy Beauvoir. Needless to say, he is thrilled to leave the city behind and investigate a report of a missing person from Three Pines. Gamache knows bigger plots are afoot and he begins to question if there is anywhere for him and his loyal detectives to find safety.
Louise Penny’s latest novel How the Light Gets In was wonderful! I have been in love with this series since Still Life and even after eight other books Penny still surprises me with her ending. I love reading a mystery that has me guessing who-dun-nit until the very end and Penny does this each and every time. Her writing is rich and filled with beautiful descriptions of village life. I love escaping to the snowy north and catching up with my favorite characters. This is a must read series for anyone searching for a new psychological murder mystery that also has fabulous characters.
Just One Year is Willem’s perspective of the story that was told in Just One Day, which was so needed! We yearned for over a year to hear his side of the story because we needed to know that he felt the same magical connection that Allyson felt for him. His year was just as heart-wrenching and hopeful as Allyson’s. He found himself traveling the world searching for his mystery girl, but instead found a way to find peace with his past. Much like Allyson, they both needed this year to discover who they are, who they want to be, and how to come to terms with their families.
Forman writes amazing love stories. You are instantly drawn into the story and the characters’ emotion filled lives. She captures all of the ups and downs of first love beautifully with her eloquent writing. I have enjoyed all of her novels and am looking forward to her next adventure.
Kiera Cass’s novel The Selection is a delightful and warm YA dystopian – which sounds like an impossible combination, but made for a great book. Thirty five girls have been chosen to attend the royal Selection in hopes of becoming the prince’s wife. While America is adamant that she has no desire to participate, her family and secret boyfriend convince her to put her name in. Of course her family wants her to win so that they can be elevated from their lowly caste status of five and no longer have to worry about food and her boyfriend (even lower than she is as he is a six) knows that this could mean that America never has to worry about surviving day to day again. Out of hundreds of girls, America is chosen to go to the palace and date the prince. While the extra income is good for her family, America is sure she will never have feelings for the prince but she decides it works out for everyone if she continues to compete.
I’ll be honest, I picked this book up because the cover is breathtaking, then I started reading and fell in love with this story. The events were predictable and similar to the TV show the Bachelor, but I adored the characters and found myself reading the entire book in a day. America and Prince Maxon’s relationship is so much fun to read. Their up and down relationship is witty, charming, and just very sweet. I found myself hurrying to get to the next section with both of them just to see what they would say. This was a great character book and a wonderful way to escape the day. I am really excited to start book two, The Elitelater tonight.