Archives for posts with tag: romantic

Divergent by Veronica Roth

divergent

Divergent takes place in a dystopian Chicago, where people are divided into five factions that practice one virtue: the Dauntless are brave,  the Candor are honest, Amity members are peaceful, Abnegation are selfless, and the Erudite are intelligent. At sixteen children are put into a simulation that tests their aptitude for all the factions, and then they get to decide which faction to join for the rest of their lives. Beatrice Prior grew up in Abnegation, but she always felt out of place because she was too selfish. When her simulation test gives her confusing results, she has to choose between staying with her family or being true to herself. Her answer at the choosing ceremony surprises everyone, including herself, and she has to live with the consequences. Will she be able to survive the initiation into her chosen faction? Should she trust her fellow initiates, even as they’re competing for a limited number of slots? Who are her real friends? She is told that she must keep her test results secret or risk death, but can she fool everyone, even her cute instructor? You’ll have to read Divergent to find out.

This is a dystopian novel starring a teenage girl, and has a similar feel  to The Hunger Games. There is a lot of teen romance going on in Divergent, but there is no love triangle as there was in The Hunger Games. (I personally felt the love triangle was a bit annoying!) The structure of the society in the series provides for a lot of discussion of human nature and nature versus nurture debates, which gives readers a nice introduction to philosophical arguments.

There are three official volumes in the Divergent series. The second book is Insurgent, and the third is Allegiant. There are also companion stories in ebook format told from the perspective of Beatrice’s main love interest, named Four. They are Four: The Transfer (#0.1), Four: The Initiate (#0.2), Four: The Son (#0.3), Four: The Traitor (#0.4), and Free Four: Tobias Tells the Divergent Knife-Throwing Scene (#1.5). There is a companion book that goes into the history of the factions, The World of Divergent: The Path to Allegiant (#2.5). The film version of Divergent came out earlier this year, and look for Insurgent to hit theaters in Spring 2015.

 

From Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Divergent-Veronica-Roth/dp/0062024035/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1401218366&sr=8-1&keywords=divergent

From King County Library System in Book, eBook, Large Print Book, Spanish Book, Audiobook CD, and Downloadable Audiobook: http://kcls.bibliocommons.com/search?custom_query=(contributor%3A(Roth%2C%20Veronica.)%20AND%20title%3A(divergent)%20)%20-anywhere%3A(allegiant)%20-anywhere%3A(insurgent)%20-title%3A(official)%20-title%3A(inside)%20-title%3A(tobias)%20-title%3A(transfer)&suppress=true&custom_edit=false

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A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

The cover of A Discovery of Witches

A Discovery of Witches is a fantasy novel that feels like a combination of Twilight by Stephenie Meyer and The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova, with far more witches. The main character, Diana, is a witch who wishes she was just a human. She studies the history of alchemy at Oxford University, and her world is shaken when she looks at a strange book and meets a handsome, brooding vampire named Matthew Claremont. Diana is quickly drawn into the supernatural world of witches, vampires, and deamons, and gets entangled in their politics.

Like Twilight, A Discovery of Witches takes a little bit of time to get the plot going, and it echoes The Historian with its scholar of European history stumbling into a supernatural world. The real delight in reading A Discovery of Witches is the unfolding relationship between Diana and Matthew. As they get to know each other, their walls start to come down, even as they both find out things that should make them reconsider. Diana is a more grown up and strong-willed heroine than Bella of Twilight, and seeing how Diana and Matthew negotiate an adult relationship is entertaining and authentic.

The author does spend too much time on the intricacies of alchemy for my tastes, but the specifics aren’t important to the plot of the book, so I mostly glossed over the in-depth descriptions of alchemical drawings.

Fans of A Discovery of Witches will be pleased to know that it is part of a trilogy. The second book, Shadow of Night, is out now, and the third, The Book of Life, is due out in July 2014. I gobbled up the first two books and I’m eagerly awaiting the third.

From Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Discovery-Witches-Novel-Souls-Trilogy/dp/0143119680/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie

From King County Library System in book, e-book, audio cd, large print book, and preloaded audio player: http://kcls.bibliocommons.com/search?custom_query=%28contributor%3A%28Harkness%2C%20Deborah%29%20AND%20title%3A%28discovery%20of%20witches%29%20%29&suppress=true&custom_edit=false=UTF8&qid=1389145973&sr=1-1&keywords=discovery+of+witches