Insurgent by Veronica Roth | BOOK REVIEW

Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Publisher/Year: May 1st 2012 HarperCollins Children’s Books
Genre: Dystopian
Series: BOOK 2
Other Books From Author: Divergent (Book 1), Allegiant (Book 3)

Amazon | Goodreads | @VeronicaRoth |

One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris’s initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

[UPDATE 22/03/14] Today is a big day. I had this review written a long time ago. I wrote it the moment I finished the book, but it never got posted. A part of me was afraid, horrified, petrified even. I LOVED Divergent. It’s almost safe to say that Divergent was THE book of 2011. It quietly snuck up on me and BLEW ME AWAY.

Then… Insurgent… I just… Can’t. What bothered me most was when Goodreads prompted me to give Insurgent a rating, I knew it’s not going to be 5 stars. Insurgent. Sequel to my favourite of favourite books. NOT. A. 5. STAR. IT BOTHERED ME. I thought maybe I was reading the book all wrong. Maybe I wasn’t in the right mood. Maybe I shouldn’t have read the glowing gazillion stars reviews. Maybe….

It’s not that 3 stars is bad. I have to make this clear: Insurgent is NOT bad. It was heartbreaking to accept that something I’ve loved so dearly isn’t as perfect as I made it out to be. So now, after Allegiant, after the Divergent movie, I’ve decided time to stop hiding. Time to move on from my frenzied state of book-lover-denial, time for closure =)

Go ahead with the review, no more girly whines, I promise! [END OF UPDATE]

the actual review


(I am not in a coherent state right now so forgive me if I accidentally leak a spoiler.)

So let’s start with the end. Because. X-SQUEEZE ME? The whole book was working up to this big insane secret that Marcus was hiding, that the Abnegation died for. Everything zoomed out real quick and suddenly we are an insignificant speck in an enormous blob of chaos. UMMMM WHAT!!!!!!!!!! The Divergent are actually.. umm… uhh… *SPOILERS*. SO MUCH COOLER THAN I EVER IMAGINED. THIS. IS. OMG. I DON’T EVEN HAVE WORDS TO DESCRIBE THIS. The world now makes so much more sense. Jeanine’s motivations, why they never go outside the fence, what ARE they guarding from outside the fence… I can imagine the final book going epic places. AHHHH!!!! This just opened up a whole new world of possibilities.

Okay now that we’ve kind of sort of dealed with that MAJOR SHOCKER. I need to talk about Tris. TRIS. Tris is the biggest issue I have with the book. You were my role model in Divergent. I looked up to you, your courage, your wit, your selflessness, your sass. You were my inspiration. But this whole trust issues with Four… Now we’re over the excitement of “oh, are they going to be together?” in the first book, here of course we get the angst. I AM NOT a fan of angsty love. Stop fighting. This is stupid. The whole Will and gun thing is so frustrating. You need a freaking gun, Tris, you are being shot at every other second. You need to talk to Four. He doesn’t read minds, how do you expect him to understand if you don’t talk to him?! SO MUCH TIME is wasted on these exact. same. exchanges. I AM SO DONE.

Tris and Four are strong individuals, and in Divergent, they proved that together, a whole can be greater than the sum of its parts. This… Love… It broke bit by bit. They let all the excessive mistrust and tension get in the way of their relationship, I sometimes feel like they don’t even understand each other like they did in Divergent anymore.

My respect for this series dies a little each time.

The action slows a lot in this book (until the last few pages or so), and instead, we get a taste of every faction. I’m fairly certain I’m not going to survive any of them!  Amity and their “peace drug”, Candor and the “truth serum”… *SHUDDERS* Even the factionless have developed a stronger identity in this book and I enjoyed that. Though definitely not on the same level as I enjoyed the adrenaline rush in all the Divergent action, it was a very cool dimension that we never got to in the first book.

From a purely objective third party point of view, Insurgent was good. It suffered slightly from a “middle book syndrome” but the ENDING!!!!! Made up for that and more. But I can’t be objective with the Divergent series. I can’t help but constantly make comparisons to Divergent. I can’t bring myself to pretend it’s okay. IT IS NOT OKAY. I loved Divergent so much. I can recall every vivid scene from the Dauntless pit to the trains to Capture the Flag to the Erudite campus. I could picture any character living and breathing right before me. Tris… Four… I loved them so much. It’s sad.

I FEEL SO CONFUSED. OMG. The disappointment is killing me =( What do you think? Which book did you like better? Share your thoughts!!


24 thoughts on “Insurgent by Veronica Roth | BOOK REVIEW

  1. Insurgent did the same thing for me… I really liked Divergent, it was a solid 4 stars for me, but Insurgent fell flat compared to that. It also got 3 stars and that was cause I didn’t see coming the twists in the plot at all! Tris character development annoyed me a bit and the lack of communication was driving me nuts!

    I still need to read Allegiant and I’m kinda scared about what I’ll think about it…

    • AHH SAME!! The whole time while reading Insurgent, I was facepalming and muttering “oh come on, Tris…” I understand her change. Losing your loved ones, and losing so many of them at one go, is a huge blow to any person but SHE HAD TO TALK TO FOUR. It’s not something they can avoid forever. That made the book seemed draggy even though quite a fair bit happened! If anything, Allegiant screams of DANGER and WARNING. I’m not sure if I’ll ever get the courage to read it. =P

    • Hmm yeah I can’t seem to find the motivation to get back on track with this series. Maybe I’ll reread Divergent and pretend it’s all okay.



  2. Yep, yep, yep. I LOVED Divergent, but, like you Insurgent was kind of “meh” for me. But that ending…gah! I completely agree! Such a great ending! It definitely started making sense why Veronica was kind of lacking in her world-building. It was like a puzzle with its pieces coming together!

    Thanks so much for sharing, and, as always, brilliant review! xD

    • That ending was a genius move by Veronica Roth. Haven’t read Allegiant so I still have no idea WHAT’S GOING ON OUTSIDE THE FENCE?!!!! *EXCITE* That lady is amazing. She’s 25 and already New York Times #1 Bestselling author, and she’s made her books into huge movie franchise. DAMMIT <3

  3. Aw, I’m sad that you didn’t love it.. I LOVED Divergent too, as you can probably see from my blog name, and I was afraid like you. :)) Thanks for stopping by my blog, and because I totally loved your comment, new follower on Bloglovin! :)

  4. I LOVE this book. The first time I read the series, it was my favouritest book of the 2 (the 3rd wasn’t out then). The second time I read it, weeell, I think I did like Divergent better. Not really sure why. I was sad that Tris/Four really struggled with their relationship, but at the same time I was thrilled with how realistic/relatable it all was. I mean, relationships go on the rocks because of the normal stresses of every day modern convenient lives. They were like FIGHITNG FOR THEIR LIVES and homeless! I expected them to not be smooshing and happy the whole time. *ahem* ANYWAY. Great review! I love this series soooo much. XD

    • I understood the stress they were going through but it bothered me that they didn’t trust each other enough to TALK about these things. It took the truth serum for Tris to finally tell Four about the shooting Will episode– why would she think he wouldn’t be okay?!! Of course Four will understand, IT WAS LIFE OR DEATH. I felt that the tough times weakened their relationship more than strengthened it and I think I wasn’t prepared to accept #FOURTRIS falling apart… Ugh, hormonal me. I LOVE DIVERGENT, LOVE IT SO MUCH <3 Will be rereading someday!! As for Allegiant… That's unchartered waters, who knows!

  5. If this is how you felt about Insurgent, I am SO curious to see what you make of Allegiant!

    I wasn’t Divergent’s biggest fan, but I thought it was entertaining. I appreciated the effort Roth made in Insurgent to address some oversights of Divergent, but it slowed the pacing considerably, which was Divergent’s biggest win. And angsty Tris is so not cool.

    • I’m staving off Allegiant for a while, I’m quite scared how reading that will permanently affect how I feel about this series. EEE!! I guess we could appreciate Veronica Roth’s efforts to nail the world-building down while keeping up the fast paced action in Insurgent, and Tris deserves some sympathy after what she’s been through, but that’s one thing to say and another to actually do it!

  6. I understand why you felt that way! I had high expectations for Insurgent too, and it turned out not quite as I liked. I heard it gets worse in Allegiant… good review :)


      I’m super excited to find out what happens outside the fence in Allegiant but at the same time.. the spoilers!! It would’ve been so much easier if I hadn’t been a pig and clicked on spoilers. *REGRETFUL DECISIONS* Then again, you have to be living in a cave to not have heard them by now xD

  7. I feel the exact same way about this one! Tris spent the entire book going from a quiet girl, to a totally badass chick, beating up dudes, and anyone else that was in her way. But in the second book she’s too afraid to hold a gun, or forgets she has a knife in her pocket, when she’s being shot at from every angle? This isn’t the Tris I got to know and love in Divergent. So disappointed in her performance…



      I mean, I know why, but that doesn’t make me like the new angsty whiny Tris any more. Looks like the only way we’ll FEEL THE FEELS again would be to reread Divergent <3 Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment!

    • Divergent will always remain a favourite book of mine and I’m not ashamed to be outwardly excited about that!! =D For some weird reason, Insurgent’s fall hurts me personally and I can’t seem to get over the pain ahh

  8. Sadly I feel very similarly about Insurgent- it was a big disappointment and just made me turn away from the series. Tris I found to be idiotically reckless in a way she didn’t need to be, and the way she changed (it’s to be expected there would be some change after what happened in Divergent) was just really disappointing to me. I was very sad to see things become so altered, especially between her and Four- it was a pretty unplesant relationship they had in this book, which made me sad. Hope to see your review of Allegiant soon- I’m interested to see what the final book did for your feelings on the series.

    • Change is difficult to accept, especially when it comes to a book that we’ve fangirled to looked forward to for SO LONG!! To be honest, I’m scared of picking up Allegiant. That’s a scary place, that one.

  9. The thing with the series is that’s it’s mostly about Tris development as a character and while I LOVED DIVERGENT the most out of all three books I was annoyed and frustrated with her in Insurgent but understood why. Sure, she was weak but I understood why she was at this point in her life where she was making all these bad decisions. It made sense. I’m sorry this one wasn’t a five star read but I’m interested in knowing what you think of Allegiant.!
    lovely review Alicia!
    Lily @ Lilysbookblog

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