Book review: Allegiant

Allegiant, by Veronica Roth

Book description: The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered – fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature – and of herself – while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.

SPOILER ALERT! Don’t click past here if you haven’t read Allegiant and don’t want to find out what happens!

My review: Everyone has been asking me what I thought of Allegiant. I finally got a chance to read it – so here goes.

I hadn’t heard great things about Allegiant, and this didn’t surprise me. I think my feeling about this book are based on how much I disliked the previous book in the trilogy, Insurgent. To me, it was kind of disastrous. And I feel bad saying that because Divergent was such a great book. But Insurgent was a mess. There was so much unnecessary running around that it kind of gave me a headache. So to me, Allegiant lies somewhere in between the two.

There were still a lot of crazy plots and twists that had me going back a few pages to remember what exactly was going on. However, unlike a lot of people, I like that most of the action took place at the airport. Because it was just ONE PLACE. Not back and forth between different headquarters and revolutionary points, which seemed to serve no purpose other than to confuse me. So keeping everything that happened in one place actually worked for me.

I do think that Roth went way to deep when she hit her, what, third or fourth revolution? I get it, people aren’t happy. But now you’re dealing with so many different groups with so many different wants … and then there’s the themes of choosing your own path. And finding yourself in a group. And self-sacrifice. And all of that kind of jumbled together too.

I guess what I’m trying to get out here is that there was just too much going on, without enough explanation. Or enough time to process it. While I liked the fast-paced action in Divergent, there still seemed to be some downtime going on where characters could actually interact with each other when their lives were not in mortal danger. That didn’t really happen after the first book, though. So all the characters seemed to be stuck at where they ended up after the first book.

As for Tris’ death – I can see why Roth did it. I think it may have felt inevitable, in order to get the self-sacrificing point across. That’s who Tris is and all that. But I’m not sure that I found it necessary. Tris did the whole self-sacrifice thing by walking into the room not knowing that she could survive the death serum. (And yes, I will agree with others that there was just WAY too many serums going around.) I don’t think she had to die to get the point across. I don’t think Four was completed as a person by having her die. I don’t think that it improved the plot.

After such a strong beginning, the Divergent trilogy was a disappointment. But I will still say that I liked Allegiant better than Insurgent by a longshot. And I also really liked Tris and Four together, and the fangirl inside me just wanted Four to be happy and maybe I’m a little mad at the book for not letting happen.

Word of the day:

Peripatetic: walking or traveling about, itinerant; (initial capital letter) of or pertaining to Aristotle, who taught philosophy while walking in the Lyceum of ancient Athens

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