Friday, July 29, 2011


I'm crawling out of my Kindle cocoon.  I feel like there's a lot I can say about it, but it's all kind of a jumble, and I wasn't sure how to discuss.  In my mind, the fact of the Kindle has eclipsed the actual books I'm reading on it, so I'm sorry about this long absence.

Last night I finished Divergent, a YA future dystopia novel that had the blessed advantage of not being all about Young Love Conquering All, Including Our Evil Overlords.  Yeah, there was a love interest, but it was firmly in the category of a Major Subplot, which I respect a lot.  I'm totally going to crib part of my Goodreads review for a synopsis:

Divergent (Divergent Trilogy)
In this post-society's-collapse world, there are five factions.  Each values a different virtue and lives that value passionately.  Young adults must choose their faction, and may have to leave their family to follow their chosen life.  Beatrice is born in Abnegation, who believe in selflessness, but she's always felt like a failure at it.  She chooses Dauntless, the faction of bravery, and throws herself into the training and initiation there. 

She learns to fight and to speak up for herself, but she also needs to learn more subtle ways of getting along in such an aggressive environment--making allies, projecting an image, hiding her virtues.  I found all of this the most compelling part of the book, though it definitely had a YA, finding-yourself feel that will appeal more to teenagers than adults.

There is a deeper plot, with mysteries and alliances and conspiracies, and there's a boy, and I won't give away all these details. 

A lot of the appeal of this story is in a texture of life way, which is really my favorite kind of SF/fantasy/speculative novel.  The ending of the book, while it does actually end the action of the story, is totally a "to be continued" moment, which irritates me on principle, but isn't too bad here.  I'll read the next one. 

Which, by the way, is titled Insurgent.  The third, as-yet-untitled book will, I assume, close the series, and I fully expect it will be titled Emergent, and be about rebuilding a new society.  I'll take bets, if anyone wants to offer one.

I've been stocking up on Kindle books the same way I always stocked up on library books, so we'll have to see what happens next.  It blew my expected PLR out of the water, though--I'm piling up the Kindle stuff instead.  It makes me kind of anxious to like it so much, because now I'm so dependent on it, but I'm going to the BPL today to get a couple of things that aren't available electronically, so we'll see how that takes, and if I make it out of my Kindle cocoon.

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