Ideas for Learners Promoting Literacy, Inquiry, and Meaningful Learning Experiences
Divergent by Veronica Roth

Book Summary

This is the first book in a series about a futuristic society in which young people must choose from one of five ways of life. The Abnegation faction values selfishness, while the Candor faction values honesty above all else. The Dauntless value bravery, the Erudite value knowledge, and people in Amity like to get along with others. Imagine living every moment of your life with a focus on one part of your personality, and keeping your other instincts and traits in check.  Should Tris choose a life that's best for her, or best for others?

The second and third books in this series are Insurgent and Allegiant.

Book Review

Highly popular and engaging, this book combines the best elements of Matched, Uglies, and Mockingjay. Tris is another strong female protagonist at the heart of an action-oriented book. The plot premise breaks down pretty quickly as it becomes obvious that there are strengths and weaknesses of any one particular trait, such as the bullying tendency that might go with physical bravery, or the viciousness that might come with honesty, or the power-seeking that might accompany the pursuit of knowledge, absent any other trait. Obviously, people are not built to focus only on one predominant characteristic, and there is plenty of diversity within characters from the faction we see most, but it's an interesting thought experiment if you don't get too bogged down in the details.

left quotation mark

At least when I cry, I know how to hide it."
          p. 115

Topics and Themes for this book:

  • Family Relationships
  • Perseverance in Life & Death Situations
  • Dystopian Societies
  • Class Issues
  • Loyalty and Power
  • What Society Values vs. What's Really Important
  • Rites of Passage

Discussion Questions for this book:

The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.

**Questions coming soon**

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