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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Amazing - This will blow you away
This was one of the most anticipated books of the year and I know why. I LOVED Divergent as you can read from my review. I was late to the Divergent series party, but on the plus side I only had to wait a few months to get my hand on the sequel and boy was that a long few months. I don't know if I can wait a whole year for the third book in the series.

There...
Published on 2 May 2012 by Mrs. S. K. Mann

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Room for improvement
* * * CONTAINS SLIGHT SPOILERS * * *

Insurgent opens only moments after the end of Divergent, so there's absolutely no lapse in time. I usually hate this device but it works here, since it was left at a pretty crucial point.

The faction system is in chaos, and Tris and her friends are forced to hide out in the Amity compound. The harmony doesn't last...
Published 13 months ago by Nichola Thorpe


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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Amazing - This will blow you away, 2 May 2012
This was one of the most anticipated books of the year and I know why. I LOVED Divergent as you can read from my review. I was late to the Divergent series party, but on the plus side I only had to wait a few months to get my hand on the sequel and boy was that a long few months. I don't know if I can wait a whole year for the third book in the series.

There are some spoilers in this review if you haven't read Divergent so be warned.

We have already been introduced to the dystopian society that Tris lives in and the five factions within it, but we learn so much more about them in Insurgent and more about the fantastic characters that make this series. Insurgent carries on right where Divergent left off. Tris made it into her chosen faction of Dauntless but now the factions are at war. Her and Four are still together and they meet up with a few surviving members of Abnegation, Erudite and Dauntless and try to find a safe haven. Amity refuse to take sides

Tris and Four learn a lot about each other through this book, there are a lot of rough patches that they go through and I wasn't sure they'd survive it. Their character grow and so does their love, but they still have trust issues, they are both stubborn and strong, not always a good combination. There are some sweet and swoon worthy romantic scenes, I would love to see more of these in the next book. Tris matures a lot throughout this book and you forget she's only a sixteen year old girl. She makes some stupid decisions I feel in this book, but always has her wits about her and always gives herself a fighting chance.

I really enjoyed learning more about how the Divergent are different to others in the factions in this book, even into the broken down elements of their brain, it was a really interesting read. I also loved reading more about the factions especially Amity we didn't hear much about in the Divergent.

Divergent is one of my favourite books and was unsure Insurgent could live up to it, but I was wrong, it was as awesome as Divergent was. The ending was brilliant, it came together answering so many questions, but left us hanging with an almighty cliffhanger. I was so tense through out reading this that I didn't relax until the end. Even then it was all I could think about. What's going to happen now?

This is one of the most action packed books I have read. Something happens on every page, bullets, punches and threats fly from all angles. Nothing in this book is black and white, good or evil, everyone has a reason for what they do whether it is right or not in the eyes of others. I can guarantee you will not be able to put this down, you won't eat, sleep or shower until you have gotten to the end of this book, it truly is amazing and Veronica Roth has totally blown me away.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Room for improvement, 5 Nov 2013
* * * CONTAINS SLIGHT SPOILERS * * *

Insurgent opens only moments after the end of Divergent, so there's absolutely no lapse in time. I usually hate this device but it works here, since it was left at a pretty crucial point.

The faction system is in chaos, and Tris and her friends are forced to hide out in the Amity compound. The harmony doesn't last long even amongst the peace faction- they soon end up scattered to the winds. Meanwhile, Tris is struggling with the consequences of her actions at the end of the previous book, leading her to make some questionable choices...

First for the positives. I really enjoyed being given access to the headquarters of the other factions. This concept is one of the most interesting things about the series, and seeing how Roth imagined the values that the factions represent decided to decorate their areas was interesting. I love detail in fiction- particularly something like dystopian fiction, which needs its setting to be impeccably crafted to make it believable, and this is an area in which Roth excels.

I also think one of the Divergent series' strengths is in its portrayal of Four. A scarred love interest is nothing new, but Roth never overdoes it; he's a three-dimensional, multi faceted character, utterly believable and even more loveable. This makes it even more annoying when Tris acts with complete disregard for his feelings, despite professing to love him; she spends the whole book either being cold and distant towards him, or wantonly putting herself in danger regardless of how it will affect him. I do NOT approve of female characters who need to have everything pre-approved by their boyfriend- but I do happen to believe that love means mutual respect, and mutual respect means honesty, not hot-and-cold behaviour and reckless behaviour. Understandable though it is, Tris' angst gets more than a little grating in parts. Sure, I understand that she's struggling with the consequences of a war and the brutal things that it entails; but some of it just sounded too self-indulgent for my tastes. If Roth had cut these parts in half, the book would be the richer for it. Saying that, however, they were well written and believable sections.

My main issue with this book was the constant 'and then, and then, and then' stream of events. The final showdown didn't have anything like the impact it should have done because the book was peppered with dramatic confrontations and secondary characters dropping like flies. You're not given time to really care about these things, and that's a big mistake in my opinion.

I was also extremely irked by the betrayal that occurs later on in the story. It just didn't ring quite true with me; the person who betrays Tris has no reason to do so, and the explanation given didn't seem adequate to me.

I didn't love it nearly as much as Divergent, but I'm still clamouring to get my hands on Allegiant, so it can't be all bad!
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If only more YA novels could follow the precedent set by Veronica Roth!, 3 May 2012
By 
H. Whitehead (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I can't see why the Divergent series isn't as amazingly popular in stores as it is online - it's brilliant, mature fantasy for those looking for something a little different. The first book was easily one of the best books I read in 2011 and Insurgent may just reach the same distinction for 2012. I wouldn't say it's as good as Divergent, but I imagine the second book of a trilogy is always the hardest to write.

Insurgent started out a little confusing for me - I hadn't read Divergent since September last year and the sequel jumps straight into the plot without really explaining or reminding you of a great deal. That said, apparently Veronica Roth purposely chose to do this and posted an explanation and a small reminder of what happened in the first book on her blog.

'I made an "artistic decision" in Insurgent not to do a lot of recapping (that device used in sequels to remind readers of what happened in the first book). Recapping is not a bad thing-- it is very useful, and often necessary--but I felt that it would bog down Tris's narrative and would sound unnatural in her voice.'

I can see her point, it would have sounded unnatural. However, I didn't know about the recap guide at the time and nor will a lot of the non-bloggers who pick up Insurgent from a bookstore. It's a great idea to post such a guide, but it didn't help me. Result - I spent the first quarter of the book more than a little confused and it did detract from my enjoyment a little.

Part of the appeal of this series, for me at least, is the complexity. It's not some simple little YA story that holds your hand and uses literative sock puppets to explain the plot. It's quite a political story and keeping straight the different factions and their relationships in your head isn't difficult, but it does take a little getting used to.

What impressed me the most about Insurgent is that it's the second book in a series that does not lose the feel of the first one. Middle books are difficult because they have to somehow keep a balance between the slow introduction of the first book and the climatic build-up of the third, and they often end up completely losing what made the first book so special. It happens all the time - dystopian society books sometimes distance themselves from the very society that was the point of the first. Not here though. It's absolutely wonderful - the city and the factions have changed since Divergent, but not unrecognisably. It's obviously still the same place, the same people and the same tone. Argh. This is what made this book for me.

You know what else? I actually liked the romance aspects, and I hardly ever do that. Tris and Four's relationship is wonderfully realistic - they love each other, but they don't always like each other, just like in the real world. They argue, but without feeling the need to make the reader drown in their angst. Four gets angry at Tris when she doesn't take care of herself properly - an argument I have honest-to-God had with my own boyfriend. Their romance doesn't take over the story, but it's a nice sub-plot that fits well. And trust me, I never say this.

Speaking of Tris... she's not amazing in this book. While not unbearable, she's a little more annoying than I remember her being in Divergent. She's definitely a strong female role model, but she tends to make stupid decisions that she promised not to make because somebody already told her exactly how stupid it really is.

A large part of the book revolves around some big secret that certain faction leaders know but won't share. Tris doesn't know what this is and KNOWS she doesn't know what this is, yet still makes a drastic decision about that secret without knowing anything about it. She seems to have lost the ability to actually think decisions through instead of making snap judgements based on her grief.

Actually, the grand revelation of that secret is what would have prevented me from giving this book five stars. You know, if I actually did ratings. It just wasn't... well, grand enough. I was expecting something a little more unique and shocking, and it fell a little flat. For me it didn't seem to fit with the tone of the book and didn't really deserve the way in which it was so fiercely protected by the faction leaders.

It was unfortunate that Insurgent ended on kind of a low point for me, because I really did love the rest of the book. It's fast-paced, continues the story brilliantly from Divergent and I can't wait for the next book. Like I said, I'm more than a little impressed how it managed to keep exactly the same tone and atmosphere from the previous. If only more YA novels could follow the precedent set by Veronica Roth!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unputdownable! (No Spoilers for this book but some for Divergent), 28 Oct 2014
By 
S. Wilson (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
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I am very late to the Divergent party and now really wish I had been punctual and read the books when they originally came out. I am absolutely hooked to the Divergent world and this second book was unbelievably even more unputdownable than Divergent. I had actually said to myself the other night that I was just going to read the first few chapters and then go to sleep but I ended up reading half of the book as I just had to know what happened to certain characters at a majorly large book plot moment. If you are a fan of YA and dystopian and are one of the rare few like me who haven't yet read the Divergent series then I highly recommend the series and urge you to read it. There are no book spoilers for Insurgent in this review but there are spoilers for the first book Divergent so don't read any further if you haven't read Divergent and don't want to know anything.

Wow what an ending to the first book! This book follows immediately on from the first with no breaks which I love when a series does this as it makes the world feel more real to me. Anyway following the attack simulation which Tris and Four managed to stop with the help of her Father, Marcus, Peter and Caleb the five remaining of them escape the madness on one of the trains headed for the Amity compound. Once there they call upon the Amity to choose a side as now all out war is threatening to take over their city with half of the Dauntless mortified of what the Erudite did to them and they have taken up with Candor and the other half more than happy to continue on with Erudite and their mad leader Jeanine. So will Amity choose a side or stay on the fence? Will Tris and Four manage to overthrow Erudite and Jeanine or has she darker plans for them and their friends? Will Christine be okay and will she forgive Tris if Tris reveals the truth about Will? And just what is the great secret if there is actually one that Abnegation didn't want to fall into Jeanine's hands?

An absolutely amazing read and I have been drawn into the world of Divergent and don't want to come back out. I absolutely love the character's Tris and Four and love the world that Veronica Roth has built. I have read some amazing books this year and this one is right up there with the best ones. I literally couldn't put the book down until after chapter 36 at one point and when you read the book you will see why. Also just when you think Veronica can't surely add any more twists to the book.....erm lets just say she does and Allegiant is set to be another amazing read. A must read book for fans of YA and Dystopian.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat disappointing following the excellent Divergent, 14 Dec 2012
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Insurgent is the second book by Veronica Roth, and is also the follow up (unsurprisingly) to Divergent. The second book in what will eventually be a trilogy picks up where the first left off, with Tris and her band of survivors from the events of the previous book attempting to get back on their feet.

There's no point in beating around the bush with this, so let's start with the positives. As with Divergent, Insurgent is very readable. Despite the failings which I'm going to come on to in a second, it's still actually written perfectly well, and I found myself reading through it at a pretty decent pace. There are also some aspects to be found in this book that made the first so good, with some decent action sequences and some decent plot moments.

Of course, the use of the word 'some' in that previous sentence will get the spider sense tingling. And with good reason. Because Insurgent is not even close to the quality that Divergent was in terms of the substantive plot and the characters.

Why? Well, there are two main reasons. The first is that the romantic sub plot that we had between Tris and Four in the first book becomes a prime focus in Insurgent. This wouldn't necessarily be an issue in itself, even if the subtlety of the romance in Divergent was a strength. But it becomes an issue simply because of the mind numbing idiocy and repetition with which Tris and Four play out this romance. Even for a 16 and 18 year old it is ridiculous, and just undermines the plot itself considering it plays such a significant role. Simply put, if the romance between Tris and Four was going to come to the fore so prominently, it just needed to be written in a more believable and compelling way than this.

The second problem is that under the strain of the main factions not being as separated as they were in the first book, the legitimacy of the plot as a whole starts to strain. The world is based on the character traits of the individual factions, with those who are Divergent displaying more than one main trait. That was an easy premise to maintain when the factions were separate, but when they are mixing as they do in this book moments start to crop up that feel both inconsistent and illogical. Unfortunately, the plot suffers for it, and I found that, in contrast to Divergent, I simply wasn't convinced by this book as a result, which would seriously undermine any dystopian novel.

The ending itself, which people have been raving about, doesn't do anything to remedy these problems in my opinion. I didn't find myself shocked by it simply because it pretty much came out of nowhere. The one positive is that it does potentially give Roth a way to shift her focus in the next book and bring some legitimacy back to the series. I will be reading the next book and sincerely hope that Insurgent becomes a blip in an otherwise readable trilogy. Given the quality of Divergent, it will be bitterly disappointing if the third book doesn't recover from the issues of the third.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hmmm... I'm not quite sure, 12 April 2013
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I've just finished Insurgent and 'Hmmmm...' is the overwhelming thought in my head. There is something with this series I just don't feel, and I think it's because I find Tris difficult. There's also the 'faction thing' for the people within the system: I find it hard to believe that they do not question a system that would seem to want you to be a particular way, but then encourages divergence by allowing the movement of people between the factions (nature / nurture...If they want pure, faction-matched people, why would the system allow movement...?) The conclusion of the book did go some way towards alleviating my issues there, in that it gives you an answer to the 'why'; but it doesn't explain why people inside the system should not see it as a flaw in their faction system to allow movement from one to another.

I'm not a Tris fan - I find her reactions to things too variable; she veers from being ultra-logical and self-aware to being obtuse and reactionary. Even with her 'divergent' brain I find it difficult to believe in someone so wildly erratic. It's almost as though she switches from one faction stereotype to another, without a natural blending of the various faction natures coming together. Maybe I'm wrong and she's like this exactly because of how she's been raised and so she cannot blend the various elements together, just use one at a time...if that's the case, there's some logic to that, but I find it difficult to believe as a true reflection of human nature.

There are characters I like in this series: I like the Dauntless banter and passion (with people like Uriah) and I'm OK with Four; Christina I also like, just as I did in Divergent. And the books are well-written, so that you get a feel for the environment...but I find I'm just mildly ambivalent with the book as a whole.

Overall, I found this book more interesting that the first - although it is reasonably long and I could walk away from reading it, so I know I wasn't gripped. Seeing more of the other factions was good - Divergent was too much Dauntless training for me, with not much of interest until the end of the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!, 5 Nov 2014
This book is sensational! it is captivating and hooked me from the beginning. I love this book and the way Veronica leads the story in such an unexpected way that all the plot twists bring a new excitement to the book. After reading the first book I was thrilled to find out what happened to Tris, Tobias and Jeanine and of course as this is the divergent series I was not disappointed. The beauty and originality of the book really does urge you to turn the page and watching the romance between Tris and Tobias unfold gives another level of meaning to this book. I would encourage this book to anyone who enjoyed the first book or enjoys the hunger games as the books are similar in some way I suggest you start from the first book in the series
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh, gritty and even better than Divergent, 13 Oct 2013
By 
Roman Clodia (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
Second books in trilogies are often the poor relations caught between the excitement of the beginning and the big climax - but Roth proves this rule wrong. Like Divergent, this feels fresh, gritty and compelling with a fierce heroine in Tris and a nicely complex hero in Tobias. Most of all, though, this book adds so much to the story that was started in Divergent, building on the world and plot-lines that were started there.

Some readers found it hard to buy into the set-up of Roth's world, and this book starts to unravel some of the foundations upon which it is built. Questions about the city and the fence, what might be `outside', (and I've always wondered about those mysterious trains...) start to intrude, and no-one is quite what we might previously have thought them to be.

So Divergent was a great start but this book raises the emotional stakes higher. Roth has combined great characters (though the minor characters still feel like little more than names), with a gripping plot and perfect pacing. I finished this in the early hours of the morning - and am biting my nails to read the next instalment.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A worthy sequel with an exciting twist, 23 Sep 2012
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Insurgent is the second book in Veronica Roth's amazing Divergent series and I admit, I bought it the moment I finished Divergent, desperate to know what happened next. Insurgent paints a bigger picture of the world, giving us a chance to learn more about the other factions and their members. Equally intriguing for me was the development of Tris and Tobias' relationship. I loved how Divergent ends with Tobias' confession of love, but just as Divergent wasn't a love story, neither is Insurgent; Roth is not to be distracted by their relationship and doesn't lose focus from the main point of the story.

However, by far the best part of Insurgent is the secret. We learn quite early on that Marcus is keeping a rather large secret that will affect the entirety of the world in which they live and may even be behind the war. The secret generally remains in the background of the story, but Roth brings it to the foreground on occasion, tantalising and tempting, reminding the reader that there is still a lot we don't know. Yet the biggest thing this secret does is differentiate it from similar dystopian books. It makes the Divergent series stand out because there is now more to this series than overthrowing a corrupt leader and therefore also establishes the point of the trilogy.

If you've read Divergent, read Insurgent. It is just as good as the first. Many sequels don't live up to the first book (the Hunger Games trilogy is a good example of this), but Insurgent is different. It isn't repetitive as some sequels are; it has a point all of its own that leads nicely on from Divergent, using Divergent as a solid foundation on which to build. It does take a while to get into it so if it doesn't grip you immediately, don't worry. The second half absolutely makes up for this. It is infectious and impossible to put down.
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3.0 out of 5 stars An unfortunately insipid Insurgent ......................................................., 18 Oct 2014
After enjoying both the book and movie of Divergent I immediately started to devour this, the second book of the trilogy. It became all too obvious after the first few chapters though that the format had changed somewhat, primarily that the action was no longer in the forefront and that the characters had changed a great deal too.

The storyline picks up immediately where Divergent left off, this in itself wasn't a problem as I had just finished the first book and it was all fresh in my mind. For someone who may have read Divergent some time before picking up Insurgent there was no recap. It left the reader to try and keep up and it brought to mind the scene from Divergent where the new Dauntless initiates had to chase and jump on the train, or it was 'sorry' you are now factionless!

***** Spoiler Alert *****

It also became very obvious early on that the plot was not as action filled and that it had morphed into a dystopian love story. Tris, who proved her metal constantly throughout Divergent, fighting her way to first place among the new initiates now has dissolved into a pool of teenage angst. Being that the book is written 'in the first person', you never get a break from her constant wallowing over how she feels about shooting Will, why Four has changed towards her and how she wants to sacrifice herself in honour of her parents. What on earth happened to the Tris that fought to end the original Erudite simulation?? She has become Bella Swan, that's what.

As for Four (Tobias), he has fallen from being a strong and rock steady character into an unpredictable and often unlikeable shadow of his former self. He spends a great deal of time admonishing Tris rather than actually making coherent battle plans, the rest of the time he spends touching and kissing her. And there in lies my problem with the book. Veronica Roth has flipped from an action based commentary on how society could end up post apocalypse, to a teenage love story where the previous plot is relegated. And it does not make sense to allow the strength of your first book to fall to the wayside.

The story does cover some physical ground though, rather than being confined to mainly the Dauntless compound. Amity, Candor and Erudite buildings play far more of a role. I enjoyed the descriptions of how the other factions ran themselves and how they politically fit together with some factions heavily tied with others, ie Amity and Erudite. Small details make a great deal of difference to how believable a story is, and although there are some very beautifully thought out bits of information written in, they are few and far between. The more I read, the less engaged I became with the Divergent world. The political and social storyline seemed always to be pushed aside for the romantic one. Why wasn't the world of the Factionless explored more? All I really learned was that they have safe houses, are planning something and all eat by passing cans of food around. Very disappointing indeed. I sincerely hope they are better explored in the next book as they could be a huge influence on the new social structure. Logically they would have greater numbers of Divergent amongst them (as they would be better hidden from the Erudite) and with members from all factions could they set up a new sixth faction or simply leave Chicago completely? This was barely touched upon though unfortunately.

Apart from the lack of a strong and forward moving plot there are many interesting character developments and additions. Four's Mother, Caleb's betrayal, the involvement of the Factionless and Amity, Peter's allegiance and many others, but they all seem to play second fiddle yet again. Even when the action does start to pick up it feels stilted and at times a little hard to follow. I would say though that I am reading it on Kindle, the paragraph breaks may not have been inserted correctly, therefore causing me to reread lines to break down the action bit by bit.

There were also some real opportunities missed I think. The interactions between Tris and Jeanine seemed flat and unfelt and I wished that more emphasis had been placed on them as they seemed stilted and unnatural. The scene with Eric in the Candor building was similarly a let down. There is an enormous chance to really get gritty and lay the ground for future action, but again it is let slip by and an act of violence takes it's place.

What all these little things boil down too is a horrible feeling that this middle novel is just a no-mans-land between Divergent and Allegiant. It may have been a glorious novel in the planning but by pandering to the romantic sub-plot it cost the story it's momentum and likeability. To offer such an enjoyable and well paced book then follow it up with a slow one is such a shame. It also makes me wonder just how much re-writing will have to be done to turn it into a fast paced movie sequel.

All in all I didn't hate the book, and I will read the next, but it hasn't fueled me with the desire to read it again and I sincerely hope that Tris and Four return to their former glory in Allegiant. I also have no doubt that most of the hardcore fans will disagree with me over this review and I respect their passion for the novels, especially if this is their first encounter with Sci-fi Dystopia.

In the meantime I'm going to shove on a black t-shirt, rewatch Divergent and imagine myself Dauntless. Hopefully I fire myself up to read the final novel and be proved wrong!
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Insurgent (Divergent Trilogy, Book 2)
Insurgent (Divergent Trilogy, Book 2) by Veronica Roth (Paperback - 21 Nov 2013)
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