Jennifer Pickrell

YA Writer

YA Book Club – Insurgent!


Join the discussion here!

This is the second book of the series, so I’m mashing together the Goodreads descriptions of both (source here and here):

In a future Chicago, 16-year-old Beatrice Prior must choose among five predetermined factions to define her identity for the rest of her life, a decision made more difficult when she discovers that she is an anomaly who does not fit into any one group, and that the society she lives in is not perfect after all.

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.


I went into a mini-panic when I saw May’s book choice.  Because, well, I hadn’t read Divergent yet.  It was on my TBR-list, but I just hadn’t gotten around to it.  So that was my first order of business.  It sucked me in and I was caught up by (and alternatively terrified of) the Dauntless.  Immediately upon closing the first book, I opened the second.

What I liked:

It would have felt out of place to get nitty-gritty details about the other factions in the first book, but I was curious, so I was glad to see more descriptions of them in the second.

Tris is strong without being physically forceful.  The Abnegation, Dauntless and Erudite all had a party and became this sometimes selfless, often brave, very stubborn, over-thinking girl.

There are some great, little descriptive details, like on page 326, when Tris is talking to Jeanine Matthews and observes this: “How refreshing.”  She has a way of flattening even those phrases that should have inflection built into them.

The fact that the reader is as uncertain as Tris at some points about who to trust.  Um, Peter, anyone?

The cover!  Both books – I really liked the art.

What gave me pause:

All through the second book, I kept wondering HOW this society had developed – a plague, a war, etc, etc…where is the rest of the world?

It sorta bugged me.

BUT!  The end of Insurgent – WHOA!  I have a feeling all my questions will be answered and it will be awesome!

Tris and Four.  I found their back-and-forth distracting at some points.  I kept forgetting what they were arguing about – Tris would randomly fly off the handle, Four would get moody (or all dadish lectury) and they wouldn’t speak for days.  I get that at the core of things they are hormonal teenagers, but I wish someone would have slapped them both and told them to get a grip because there’s a lot of crazy shizz going on out there.

But Four with his brooding and tattoos?  Yeah, I would have been all about that when I was sixteen.


After I finished the books, I decided to take the Divergent Factions Quiz, which rocked since it was like the test from the book (but, you know, without all the scary parts).

I knew going in I would not be Abnegation.  No one would ever accuse me of being selfless.  And I’m too high-strung for Amity or Dauntless.  Candor, maybe?  I can be brutally honest at times.  Erudite…most likely.  I do like learning.

So what did I get?







No kidding.

The girl who is afraid of boats and airplanes and who gets motion sickness from 3-D movies got the brave.  Maybe it’s because they stand up for what is right and sort-of buck the system?  That I’m okay with.  But I will never in a million years jump on or off a train.

What about you all?  Thoughts on the books?  Factions?  Would we be leaping off of buildings together?


Author: Jennifer Pickrell

I write YA contemporary filled w/ romance, angst & family drama. Things I like: cats, snacks, baseball, green tea, taking pictures of trees & movies so bad, they’re good.

16 thoughts on “YA Book Club – Insurgent!

  1. Dauntless! Go you! Now I want to take the faction quiz.
    One thing I would have loved was a little more world-building in INSURGENT–but as a former Chicagoan, that was really stemming from a weird kind of homesickness (weird because the Chicago I lived in was, um, faction-free).

  2. Lol,I got Dauntless, too! And that is soooo not me. Roth did an awesome job, and your descriptions of Tris are spot on.

  3. There’s no way I’d end up with Dauntless. I have far too many irrational fears.

    I have to agree with you on your thoughts about Tris and Four. It did seem like there was a lot of arguing between them, and it left me wondering at times what it was that they were arguing about in the first place. Sort of drove me bonkers. But I suppose that’s realistic, right? I’m definitely itching to know where this whole story is going to go in Book 3! 🙂

  4. Yes, PETER! I loved how rounded his character was in this one. I really saw him only as a bad person in Divergent, so I loved seeing his depth. I still don’t like him, but what he did (no spoilers in your comments) surprised me and really showed us there’s more to everyone.

  5. You nailed my thoughts about their Tris-Four back-and-forth. One minute they were kissing and the next she was practically stomping her feet and plugging her ears being stubborn. I still want them to really fall madly in love and live happily ever after. And, I have hope (like you) that all will come together about the rest of the world outside of Chicago in book three!

  6. I totally thought I’d get Erudite…and I also got Dauntless. At first I was totally confused, but then I thought about it more, and realized that the emphasis is really on their philosophy of “ordinary acts of courage.” So in that sense, I guess it fits.

    I was also curious about the world building, but we started getting more and more of it toward the end. Can’t wait to find out more in Book 3!

  7. I haven’t read these books yet (sometimes I don’t like getting involved in series…maybe they when they all come out) Of course you are dauntless. You’re a writer. That takes some bravery 🙂

  8. Cool! I love reading everyone’s reviews. I agree with so many of your comments– great review.

  9. I’m halfway through Insurgent and loving it. I’m going to hop over to the quiz now.

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