Take the anger and grit of The Outsiders, the intellectual and geographical dystopia of 1984, and a good dose of satire a lá Harrison Bergeron, and you have these two young adult novels by Veronica Roth. Set in Chicago sometime in a future where everyone is a member of one of five factions, the story begins with the main character, Beatrice Prior, facing her aptitude test that will determine which faction best suits her. Beatrice was born into the Abnegation faction but displays an aptitude for both this and two other factions, Erudite and Dauntless, which makes her Divergent. As the woman administering the test advises, this is a very very bad outcome and the catalyst of this trilogy. Beatrice’s story is set in motion on her Choosing Day, when she leaves her family to join the Dauntless faction, a group of characters straight from an S.E. Hinton casting call costumed with 21st century fashions and infused with a much dimmer outlook than Hinton’s simple boys from the 1970s.
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