Author: Veronica Roth
One-sentence summary: A 16 year old girl in future dystopian Chicago makes a choice about her life that begins and understanding about her society, herself, and the truth.
B.A.D. Girls Book Rating: 8
Our favorite thing about it: The story kept us entertained and wanting more.
Our least favorite thing about it: Some of the plot was predictable and cheesy.
Main Topics of Discussion: Truth, Sacrifice, Bravery, Human Nature, the Factions, Leadership
Our favorite quote: “I have a theory that selflessness and bravery aren't all that different.”
Notes: We really all seemed to love reading this book. The pace and story were engaging and fun and it was a fairly fast read for us all. And many of us chose to read the second book in the trilogy before the meeting as well.
As with most dystopian novels (even Hunger Games), there is a bit of the incredulous (jumping off of trains…really?), but we knew with this genre to just buy into the premise from the beginning to truly get the full impact of the book. Once you accept the reality the author sets up in the book, it is really hard to not get wrapped up in the story and characters, which is what made it such a great book for us.
And one of the things we most appreciate about the dystopian genre is its ability to strip away our current culture by replacing it with a completely foreign one and use it to comment on universal truths about human nature, behavior and emotions.
The parts of the book that we found the most interesting were the discussions of bravery. False or showy bravery was, of course, discussed as a foil to true bravery, which involves selflessness and sacrifice. The intermingling of the values from Abnegation and Dauntless was a major theme in the book.
If there were one part of the novel about which we would get picky, it was that the romance sometimes read as a bit predictable and cheesy. But I think we all felt that it didn’t distract from the overall novel too much.
Memorable Meeting Moments: The Jeopardy Game…when Lindsay couldn’t answer the question to which she was the answer! And Dara won the game!
What We Ate: Crostini with Brie and Goat Cheeses, Beef with Mushrooms and Wine Sauce over Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes, Parmesan and Garlic Roasted Brussels Sprouts, and Snickers Cupcakes