Wine Pairing: I’m going to recommend a Red Bordeaux for this read, because it’s a blend, and what is Divergence but a blend of human characteristics: strength, honesty, selflessness, kindness, and intelligence.
I’ve recently begun re-reading this series in anticipation of Veronica Roth’s Salt Lake City tour stop, and I’m so glad I did. There are some really fascinating elements to this world that I didn’t pick up on during my first read through.
What I am most impressed by are all of the psychological and sociological elements that Roth explores throughout the series. The premise of the faction system is fascinating. Imagining yourself forced into a situation where you much decide what quality you most value in humanity, what one you yourself most exemplify, and what one you think is the biggest danger to your society as a whole is such an interesting exercise.
The book also calls into question our obsession with being sorted into groups where we feel like we belong. I mean, how many quizzes have all us book nerds taken on what Hogwarts house we’d be sorted into? We all have this burning desire to feel like we belong and like we’re understood. Roth takes that desire and transforms into an actual social system that is obviously problematic but so interesting to imagine.
In an interview on the First Draft podcast by Sarah Enni, which is THE best podcast out there if you like YA lit, Roth also discusses how the fear simulations are based on her interest in exposure therapy, something that she herself did a version of at one point in time. How intriguing is that?
This book is absolutely loaded with thought-provoking material if you take the time to closely read it. I am absolutely blown away by subtle depths of this novel.
Not only that, but this book makes me feel like a real bad a** every time I read it. I just want to go sprint for miles through the city and bust out my old Billy Blanks Tae Bo DVDs.
While I finish re-reading this trilogy, I will be anxiously awaiting the release of Roth’s newest book Carve the Mark, out on January 17th,as well as her tour stop here in Salt Lake at The King’s English bookshop with Sarah Enni on January 24th!
*All wine recommendations are, of course, for those of legal drinking age only.*