Allegiant by Veronica Roth Review
Release date: 22 October 2013
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Number of pages: 531
My rating: 1.5/5
NOTE: I have divided this review into two parts. Part one contains no spoilers. Part two contains major spoilers as I will be discussing my feelings on very specific events.
After a year and a half of excitement, heaps of squealing, many discussions, and anticipation, I can truly say that I am incredibly disappointed by the conclusion to this series.
I am a huge fan of the Divergent series. I have read Divergent and Insurgent around 7 times. I spent hours talking excitedly to friends about Allegiant, and now that I’ve read it, the series has been completely ruined for me.
Allegiant begins sometime after Insurgent. It follows Tris and Four as they find out what lies beyond the fence and try to mend their broken world. However, nothing is as it seems, and the truth changes everything.
There are so many things wrong with this book. Everything that made the previous two books enjoyable is completely gone. It loses all logic, as we see various characters make decisions that make absolutely no sense at all.
The characters all go down the shithole. In Divergent and Insurgent, I liked every single character (even the evil ones!). In Allegiant, characters that were previously compelling and nuanced become flat and boring. The cast of secondary characters, which Veronica Roth built up so well are tossed to the side. If you liked Uriah, Christina, Peter, or Caleb, you will be disappointed by their appearances here.
Veronica Roth also introduces a huge amount of new characters in Allegiant, none of who are likable or developed. Fourteen hours after reading it, and I can barely remember who the hell any of those people are or what they were doing.
I had a huge problem with Tris here. In the previous books she acted like her age. She was unsure, scared, and made plenty of mistakes. In this book, Tris is right about EVERYTHING. She gains some sort of amazing intuition and super toughness, but none of it is realistic. She loses the spark that made her interesting and fun to read.
However, the most screwed up character by far was Four. He changes from a strong, rational character to one who is a stupid, illogical, whiny pansycake (haha, “pansycake”. Dauntless slang is awesome). I don’t know where this personality change happened, because it sure wasn’t the Four we came to know. There is a huge focus on his issues with his parents, which became annoying and heavy-handed. Half of Four’s POV is just him crying over the injustice of having such shitty parents. Considering the fact that his parents don’t appear much, having Four focus so much on them made no sense. I understand that Four has parental issues; a lot of us do too. But honestly, his parents weren’t even there. He’s eighteen years old, and has been living alone for two years. Obviously his issues will affect him, but he could have let them go very easily.
Letting go of his issues would add substantial development and maturity to his character, as well as being realistic and offering the reader some closure.
Unsurprisingly, Tris and Four’s relationship also goes down the drain. They argue a lot, and they seem to disagree with everything. It would have been better if they had broken up and gone their separate ways. There was also a lot of making out, which got really boring after a while. When I was fifty per cent into the book, I wondered why they were together at all. It seemed like they were just together for the sake of it.
The main plot of this book is filled with plot holes and is nonsensical. I will go into more detail below in the spoiler-rich part of my review. If you want to read the book for an explanation of the faction system, don’t bother. It’s ridiculous and illogical.
The dual-POVs were a notable difference to the other books. Don’t get too excited: Tris and Four’s voices are indistinguishable. Half the time I didn’t know whose POV I was reading from, and to tell you the truth: I didn’t give a shit.
A tiny thing I noticed was the swearing in Allegiant. Don’t worry, it’s just a few “s” words now and then. However, this felt weird to me, because no swearing appears in the other two books and none of the characters seem surprised by it.
If you’re looking for a satisfying end to this series, you’ll be very disappointed and confused. However, in contrast to many other readers, I don’t hate the ending because of what happened, I hate it because of how it happened. There is a huge twist in the end, and none of it was done well. It was sloppy and rushed. The actual ending itself could have worked if it was built up towards and if it was backed by character motivations that WEREN’T illogical and rash.
I do not recommend this book to anyone, not even fans of the previous two books. This book is VERY different to the other two in a bad way. However, if you want to find out how the series ends, go for it. If you thought Divergent and Insurgent were only okay, don’t bother with this. It won’t do anything for you.
Part 2 (MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD):
Ok, I’m going to make a list of things that pissed me off and talk about them.
The genetics thing: well, this doesn’t really make sense. So, there are GDs and GPs. How are factions supposed to help this? If most of the experiments failed, then why even bother? This aspect of the book was poorly explained, just like some of the brain stuff in Insurgent. Also, how the fuck is Tris a GP but Tobias is a GD? In the previous books, it felt like Tobias is the perfect one (that changes here). If Tris is meant to be perfect, then how come she makes so many bad decisions?
Tris: What the hell? I didn’t realise she was a superhuman. I also didn’t realise that she could be so boring. Also, stop being right about everything!
Tobias. Seriously. What the fuck? He was so weak in Allegiant. I’m not saying that all of the characters have to be really strong or anything (in fact, character weaknesses flesh out a character and make them realistic), but jeez, they should at least be capable and not incredibly whiny. I don’t give a shit that your parents are shit, not after you spent 982293847 hours complaining about them. Look, everyone has issues. I have issues. However, given Four’s previous bravery and maturity and that his parents aren’t really present, you’d think that he’d deal with his issues in a better way. Seriously, wiping your parent’s memory so you can have a second chance? I didn’t realise an eighteen year old could be such a momma’s boy. What the hell would you do after you wiped your mom’s memory? Repeat your childhood even though you’re already eighteen? *facepalm*
Tris and Tobias: stop making out, already. After the whole Uriah thing, Tris taking Tobias back did not make any sense. Tobias helping a bunch of people he didn’t know in a really dangerous mission was a dumb move, and he ends up killing his best friend’s brother. So, why would Tris stay with him? Beats me. Also: worst. Sex. Scene. Ever. (I think. I’m still not entirely certain they had sex). I know it’s YA book, but seriously. You can make it clearer without being really explicit. A simple line such as “are you sure?” or something about nervousness or being really close can make a sex scene more obvious while being realistic and appropriate for the genre.
Nita’s mission: actually, Nita’s mission was pretty awesome.
Tobias’s involvement in Nita’s mission: Honestly, I think that Tobias only got involved in her mission because he was upset that he was genetically damaged and not Divergent. Way to be whiny and selfish, dickhead.
Tris’ death: Honestly, this could have worked for me if it was built up properly and done for a proper reason. She stole Caleb’s moment of redemption, and became the self-destructive Tris in Insurgent again, even after she promised she wouldn’t. Then there’s all this shit about self-sacrifice in there. It was so random, and it wasn’t even done for a good reason.
The entire mission thingy: Ok, I do not understand this. So, everyone hates the bureau and Jeanine because they manipulate people with serum. Everyone always talks about how shitty and manipulating they both are. And then they go right ahead and do it themselves. And I’m meant to believe this is a good thing? Wiping a whole bunch of people’s memory doesn’t really solve anything. It doesn’t solve the problems they’ve been having with humanity. Also, they released the memory serum over the entire compound. Not everyone was involved with the whole genetics thing. What about the janitors, or the nurses? This whole controlling other people with serum thing is what they’ve been fighting against the entire time. Tris dies for this dumbass mission. God, I just don’t understand this.
Well, there definitely wasn’t too much I liked about this book. The entire thing was a horrible mess full of unnecessary deaths and stuff that just didn’t make sense. It made the last two books seem pointless. There was a huge fuss in the first book about how the Divergent are special and dangerous. Then in Allegiant, Divergence doesn’t even mean anything anymore. Remember the video they made a huge deal about in Insurgent? Yeah, that was all bullshit. Allegiant felt so disconnected from the other books. It was like a whole new story. If you compare Allegiant and Divergent side by side, they have very little in common.