A friend actually recommended these books to me about a year ago. However, it is only recently that I finally had the time to read it. Between work, French lessons, socialising etc. I just didn’t find the time. Plus I was still ploughing through “A dance with dragons” and was determined not to start another book until I had finished that one.
I finally finished “A dance with dragons last week, so I decided to start on these books. I had sort of forgotten about them, but the release of the film adaptation of book 1 “Divergent”, peaked my interest. I saw the film and in my usual impatience, could not wait until the next film is out to find out what happens next. I read all 3 books in the space of a week. I have mixed feelings about this series and I will explain why.
Despite reading all 3 books so quickly, I did not enjoy all 3 books as equally. I read “Divergent” without skipping a single page. I found every detail interesting and got very engrossed in the story. I thoroughly enjoyed it and could not wait to start reading insurgent. It was only by sheer will power that I was able to go to bed instead of staying up to read it. When I read, I have this habit of just going full throttle. This means when I read, I will not stop until I’m done. Sleep, usually pays the price for that. It is why I usually wait until I know I have time to read a book fully, before I start.
Anyway, I’m digressing. So back to the books! I started reading “Insurgent” first thing the next day. For the rest of the week, I would read on the bus, train, at lunch etc. I did skip a few pages in this one, because I do think some bits were a bit drawn out, but overall, I felt it complimented the first book well. I could see where the author was going. The books made sense. It answered some questions I had from book one and some I thought would be answered in book 3 “Allegiant”. It wasn’t as good as book 1, but in my experience, the first book is always the best. My theory is that this is because the author spends more time creating and cultivating the story than they probably do with the others. Once it is out and the hype starts, they know they have to capitalise on that to make the most of the hype to sell the other books, so they try to get the books out in time to do that. This sometimes affects the quality of the books. To me, that was a little evident in the second book, but not enough to make me think “this is terrible”. It was just enough to make me note that it was not as good as the first, but still an enjoyable read.
So of course, my expectation of book 3 “Allegiant” was a little bit lower after I read “Insurgent”. I still expected it to be good, but I thought it would be more of a tying of the loose ends of the story and explaining the things that still needed to be explained. Instead, I found that when I finished reading, what happened was that I felt confused. I was not sure I had actually read another book in the same series. It was just so different. The writing style changed (Ok, I could deal with that if the story made sense) but the story was just so one dimensional. It was as if at this stage, the author had just given up and just thought, just write something. It’s popular enough that people will buy it anyway. I felt like the story didn’t really fit with the other 2 books and I’m not going to lie, the ending really disappointed me.
I’m trying not to give it away (although, I’m sure if you google you’ll know), but let’s just say, I didn’t see the point of the ending. To me, and this is purely my opinion, it reminded me of watching a film, falling asleep and suddenly it’s ending and you have no idea what happened to make it end that way. That’s how I felt. Personally, I’d be very happy for the writers of Hollywood to go to town and rewrite the entire book 3 when they turn it into a movie and if you know me, you will know that I absolutely hate when Hollywood ruins a book by putting their own spin on it. However, in this particular case, my view is that perhaps Hollywood could do a better job than the author.
Don’t get me wrong, overall, I did enjoy the books. The author did manage to keep me interested and satisfied with 2 out of 3, but personally, book 3 lets it down and makes it an average read as a series. When you do a book series, it is my opinion that you should aim to end as well as you started, or just don’t bother doing it at all. It just taints the other books that on their own are actually pretty decent reads if there is one bad apple in the bunch. People never remember the good, but the bad will stick out like a sore thumb.