September 27, 2014

Allegiant by Veronica Roth - Book Review



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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.

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Timesbest-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.


This review has some spoilers. Read at your own risk.

Every question that can be answered must be
answered or at least engaged.
Illogical thought processes must be
challenged when they arise.
Wrong answers must be corrected.
Correct answers must be affirmed.
—From the Erudite faction manifesto
After how many months, I finally found the courage to read the last installment of Divergent Series. I have read the unfortunate events that readers should anticipate when they read this book. I thought I was finally ready to restrain my emotions when the need arises, but it doesn’t. It still stabbed and hurt like hell. 

Tris and Tobias, together with their friends, managed to succeed in impeding the plan organized by the Erudites to control the minds of the people in the entire city. However, since the place was in jumble as a result of the uprising, so are the minds of the people. Leaders have their own hidden motives. Some wanted to lead for the good. Some wanted to lead to control. 

Tris, being the brave heroine, got hold of the CD that delivered the news that the Abnegation wanted to share to the entire city and will probably change everyone’s perception of that they were taught to believe. 

In the end, it was Evelyn who prevailed but a seed of doubt had been planted in their minds. As a result, the factionless dominated the city. New rules were made and implemented. New people were assigned to head certain activities. 

Factionless rules:
1. Former faction members are required to move closer to Erudite headquarters.
2. Mix no more than four members of a particular faction in each dwelling.
3. Mix the clothing.
4. Curfew: Everyone is required to return to other assigned living spaces at nine o’clock at night. They will not leave those spaces until eight o’clock the next morning.
5. Guards will be patrolling the streets at all hours to keep us safe. 
6. Everyone will begin to learn the jobs the factionless have done. The jobs will be done on a rotation schedule in addition to the other duties that have traditionally been performed by the factions.
“We are many yet we are no one."
There were nagging doubts about the trustworthiness of the new leadership. With the strict implementations of the new rules and regulations, there were a few who were brave enough to form a new group. They call themselves, the Allegiant. They are the people that will lead the rebellion against the new government created by the new city leaders. They are still allied with the original purpose of the city. They wanted to go out of the city and see for themselves what’s happening outside the borders. The group was led by Tori and Johanna Reyes. Tris, Tobias, Uriah, Caleb, Cara, Christina, and Peter also joined the group.
THE WORLD BEYOND ours is full of roads and dark buildings and collapsing power lines.

There is no life in it, as far as I can see; no movement, no sound but the wind and my own footsteps.

It’s like the landscape is an interrupted sentence, one side dangling in the air, unfinished, and the other, a completely different subject. On our side of that sentence is empty land, grass and stretches of road. On the other side are two concrete walls with half a dozen sets of train tracks between them.
As they venture out of the city, they never realized the enormity of the conspiracy behind all the things they were taught to believe. They will soon discern just how much information were withheld from them and how big the world they were really a part of. They will be overloaded with information and technology they probably haven’t known and seen until now. They’ll finally meet the Oppressors – the people outside the city. They’ll meet people that they thought were dead.
“Your city is one of those experiments for genetic healing, and by far the most successful one, because of the behavioral modification portion. The factions, that is.” David smiles at us, like it’s something we should be proud of, but I am not proud. They created us, they shaped our world, they told us what to believe.
One of the prime enigma they were finally able to discover was that the people in the city of Chicago were just a part of an experiment conducted by the United States of America. It was an experiment supervised by the Bureau of Genetic Welfare to unearth a solution for the previous experiment they have done which caused the Purity War. Apparently people were classified as Genetically Damaged and Genetically Pure. The last experiment they conducted where they manipulated the genes of the people resulted in disastrous consequences. So as a solution, they thought of a new social order where the GD’s behavioral problems can be controlled. In short, they were just guinea pigs to the Scientists that works in the Bureau. Unbeknownst to the people of the city, they were monitored 24/7 by the cameras installed in their world.
“‘Divergent’ is the name we decided to give to those who have reached the desired level of genetic healing.”
The information they learned has led to disappointment. How can the government be so selfish enough as to control the people? Tris will soon learn that being a Divergent was just that – a genetically healed individual. A scientist also found out that Tobias is not really a Divergent. He just shows some of the traits that can be found among the Divergents. How can Tris and Tobias move past this issue if Tobias thinks of himself as a damaged? 

The group has become more intact even after learning about the news but there are two individuals who were still condemned with hate by the group. Peter surely has his own motives for joining the group. Caleb, on the other hand, was forced to come with them after Tobias got him out of the prison after he was sentenced for execution, even though what he did towards Tris was completely unforgiveable. 

As they learn their way inside the compound, they’ll discover how the Bureau maltreated the Genetically Damage (GD). It is evident how they favor the GPs over them. It would just be a matter of time for the GD’s to rebel against the government. The behavior of people cannot be entirely dependent on their genes. Even the GPs are capable of violence too.
I used to think that when people fell in love, they just landed where they landed, and they had no choice in the matter afterward. And maybe that’s true of beginnings but it’s not true of this, now. I fell in love with him. But I don’t just stay with him by default as if there’s no one else available to me. I stay with him because I choose to, every day that I wake up, every day that we fight or lie to each other or disappoint each other. I choose him over and over again, and he chooses me.


This book may contain more action scenes but I’m always thankful for all the brief encounters between Tris and Tobias. I just love their companionship. And as they venture into the outside world, their relationship will also gain more strength and they’ll realize just how deep they were falling more for each other every day. They’ll also discover new things about each other that will provide more security in their relationship and more trust towards each other. Tris will learn that love will always be a choice. It’s not a matter of who loves more, it’s a matter of sticking to each other in good times and in bad times.
When someone wrongs you, you both share the burden of that wrongdoing – the pain of it weighs on both of you. Forgiveness, then, means choosing to bear the full weight all by yourself.
I absolutely love Tris! She may act tough like she’s not afraid of anything but deep inside she still has the qualities that also make an Abnegation. She’s so full of love and she’s has a heart to forgive other people even those who have hurt her again and again. She loves Caleb enough to forgive and absolve him from all the pain that his betrayals caused her.
Like everything between us is twisted together, friendship and love and family.
Tris was lucky to find a real man in Tobias. He had been a sort of all-in-one person. He had provided friendship and acted as her best friend when she wanted to confide her feelings to him. He had become a family when she lost hers. And most of all, he provided her the love she needs.
If the sacrifice is the ultimate way for that person to show you that they love you, you should let them do it. That, in that situation, it’s the greatest gift you can give them. Just as it was when both of your parents died for you.
The Allegiant has found a way to unite everyone for the better. They wanted to erase the bias perception of the people towards the GDs. They want a peaceful world where everyone can go wherever they want. The problem is that the Bureau is against the idea so they devised a plan to get a hold of the memory serum that will erase the prior knowledge of everyone in the government about the GDs. When Tris and the group set everything in motion. Everyone in the group were given tasks. The odds were in their favor. But apparently, someone’s luck faded away.
“Am I done yet?” I say, and I’m not sure if I actually say it or if I just think it and she hears it.

“Yes,” she says, her eyes bright with tears. “My dear child, you’ve done so well.”

This part was the most heartbreaking of all. It was absolutely heart-wrenching. At first it was all so surreal until I realized it was definitely happening. I already knew in advance what would happen, but it did not really soften the blow. It brought tears to my eyes knowing that Tris would be forever gone. It all happened so fast. 
If I don’t survive, tell Tobias I didn’t want to leave him.
It was difficult to accept although I know that what she did was a selfless act to ensure a harmonious world for the others that will survive. I’m teary eyed as of this moment because I can vividly remember how that selfish David let her succumb to her own death. She knew that there was no other way to obtain the memory serum that will reset them. She knew that it was a one-shot deal. Even in the last breaths of her life, she still thought of the people who depended on her. But of all the people she left behind, I was mostly worried for Tobias.
Everything inside me screams for just one more kiss, one more word, one more glance, one more.

I wanted to be there to comfort him. He, of all people, needed her the most. She brought out the best in him. They even made plans for their future if they ever succeeded in activating the memory serum. God, it was just so disheartening to imagine Tobias kneeling next to her motionless body while he cried and wished for just a moment to say goodbye to her. It just broke my heart to pieces. 

Allegiant was certainly an action-packed novel but it wasn’t just a book meant to entertain readers. It was also a book about:

1. Forgiveness – that forgiveness can have the power to free the burden of your shoulders. Forgiveness and love are correlated. Love should be an enough factor to consider to forgive someone of his actions, however cruel it may be. 
2. Selflessness – There are still people out there who can be selfless. Tris had shown how her heroism had helped in making the world a better place. Instead of allowing her brother, Caleb, to go through the death serum, she chose to sacrifice herself instead. She knows she might die if she pursue her plans, but she still did it knowing that what she’ll do will probably save the humankind. After all, her mindset was on the right track while Caleb wanted to do it to absolve him of the guilt he felt when he betrayed her. 
3. No one wins a war. In every war, it is expected that there would be casualties from both parties. No one gets a trophy for winning a war. Everyone is affected. Things will be destroyed. That was why I really liked it when Tobias decided to have a diplomatic conversation among the leaders in the city to avoid more violence. 
4. Love is a choice. It will always be. No matter how bad or good the situations you’re in, it shouldn’t matter. Even with everything Tris and Tobias had gone through, they still chose to be together. Because that’s love. 
5. The quality of life you lived is not measured on how long you stayed on Earth. It’s about how much you have affected the lives of other people in a good way.
I suppose a fire that burns that bright is not meant to last.
Tris will always be one of the characters that will forever be engraved in my heart. I absolutely loved her to pieces. She may have lived a short life but she certainly made a lasting impression that will eternally be etched in the memories of all the people she had helped. She was born to do great things and that was what she did. She was a girl who turned into a woman who was full of radiance and fervor. I won’t say that her brightness wasn’t meant to last because she will forever be remembered. She touched lives and had become an inspiration for everyone. She will always be a constant reminder of the struggles the Allegiant survived. She will always be the symbol of courage and peace. I’ll forever miss you Tris Prior. 

Thank you Miss Veronica Roth for writing this series. It was worth all the tears, time and effort. :D

A lie of omission is still a lie.
When you kill someone you love, the hard part is never over. It just gets easier to distract yourself from what you’ve done.
I wonder if fears never really go away, or if they just lose their power over us.
People can’t really be trusted to lie consistently.
Knowledge is power. Power to do evil or power to do good. Power itself is not evil. So knowledge itself is not evil.
You don’t believe things because they make your life better, you believe them because they’re true.
Everyone has some evil inside them, and the first step to loving anyone is to recognize the same evil in ourselves, so we’re able to forgive them.
I think you’re still the only person sharp enough to sharpen someone like me.
Admitting involves softening, making excuses for thing that cannot be excused; confessing just names the crime at its full severity.
Just as I have insisted on his worth, he has always insisted on my strength, insisted that my capacity is greater than I believe. And I know, without being told, that’s what love does, when it’s right—it makes you more than you were, more than you thought you could be.
Sometimes, all it takes to save people from a terrible fate is one person willing to do something about it.
Maybe forgiveness is just the continual pushing aside of bitter memories, until time dulls the hurt and the anger, and the wrong is forgotten.
It’s not sacrifice if it’s someone else’s life you’re giving away, it’s just evil. It should be done from love, not misplaced disgust for another person’s genetics. That it should be done from necessity, not without exhausting all other options. That it should be done for people who need your strength because they don’t have enough of their own.
When you have to choose between two bad options, you pick the one that saves the people you love.
Sometimes you have to take difficult measures to ensure peace.
There are so many ways to be brave in this world. Sometimes bravery involves laying down your life for something bigger than yourself, or for someone else. Sometimes it involves giving up everything you have ever known, or everyone you have ever loved, for the sake of something greater.

But sometimes it doesn’t.

Sometimes it is nothing more than gritting your teeth through pain, and the work of every day, the slow walk toward a better life.

That is the sort of bravery I must have now.
I have always known this: Life damages us, every one. We can’t escape that damage. But now, I am also learning this: We can be mended. We mend each other.


 Veronica Roth

Veronica Roth is from a Chicago suburb. She studied creative writing at Northwestern University, and wrote DIVERGENT (Katherine Tegen Books, May 2011) and INSURGENT (May 2012). The third and final book in The Divergent Trilogy, ALLEGIANT, will come out on October 22, 2013. In the meantime she will spend endless hours browsing Wikipedia in her pajamas as she eats corn flakes. (Or some other kind of bland breakfast cereal.)


READ MY REVIEWS OF THE FIRST TWO BOOKS

 Divergent Book Review  Insurgent Book Review

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