Divergent

Divergent (Divergent, #1)

Goodreads’ summary:

“In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her”

My review:

This book had so many amazing reviews, I had to at least try to read it. The first couple of chapters were all setup and kind of slow but once I pushed through those, the story was so unique and enticing I couldn’t stop until I finished. The ideas behind the story were amazing, I have no idea how Roth came up with them. The internal struggle of Tris and having to decide whether to stay with her family or choose the faction she has always dreamed of being a part of. This exaggerated version of what most teenagers go through is so powerful because it connects to so many people and I think that’s what makes it so good. Also, the fact that Tris finds a romantic fantasy and struggles to make it a reality which is what a lot of girls dream of having. Although extremely frustrating at times, the romance aspect is adorable and I loved it.

The actual writing and layout of the book was just not as great as I expected. I did love the story, but the whole book I felt like I was just waiting for something to happen. The entire book was just build up which would have been okay if it was a shorter. It felt like the rising action lasted forever but nothing had really happened. That though, is definitely not a reason not to read it because this book is so interesting and one of a kind, it even invaded my dreams. I definitely recommend reading this book and the rest of the series because it only gets better.

House of Hades by Rick Riordan

WARNING:If you have yet to read the previous Heroes of Olympus books, this review will have spoilers. There will be no spoilers on House of Hades.

“At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy’s instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea’s forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

They have no choice. If the demigods don’t succeed, Gaea’s armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.”

(http://www.rickriordan.com/my-books/percy-jackson/heroes-of-olympus/The-House-of-Hades.aspx)

My review:

After the gigantic cliff hanger Riordan left us with after Mark of Athena, this book was somewhat a relief to that horrible feeling of not knowing what will happen. The great thing about this book that kept me reading was the way he developed two plots at once that came together in the end and how he switched points of view every few chapters or so. Being able to see into the minds of all of the characters is definitely a unique way to write a book and I definitely loved reading it like that, even though it was frustrating at some points because I would get attached to a particular character and not want to switch to a different one.

This book had action, suspense, romance, and my favorite aspect of the book of course, mythology. All of these characteristics were well balanced so it didn’t turn into a romance novel with some action or vice versa. The romance between Percy and Annabeth, Piper and Jason, Hazel and Frank, and Leo -who may or may not find the love we all know he deserves- is satisfying in that it gives relief from the stressful situations they are all in, trying to save the world and all.

While Annabeth and Percy travel through the depths of Tartarus, they encounter every monster they have ever defeated, since that’s where the monsters go when they “die”. This is a true test of their strength, especially because they are weaker in Tartarus, and they defeated the monsters once, and the way Riordan describes it all made me feel as if I was really there. The only thing that upset me was that I didn’t know I was supposed to read “The Demigod Files” before I read House of Hades. One of the supporting characters in the House of Hades was originally brought about in the Demigod Files. So if you have yet to read the Demigod Files, and haven’t read House of Hades, I seriously suggest reading the demigod files first. Not knowing about that story and character didn’t take away from the story much though because the numerous adventures Percy and Annabeth have in Tartarus are so entertaining and original that it kept me hooked.

While Frank, Hazel, Piper, Jason, Leo, Nico, Coach Hedge, and the Athena Parthenos are making their way to the doors of death that are in the real world, they have to go through so many crazy obstacles that all relate in some way to Greek mythology which is extremely entertaining. The way Riordan takes the old myths and turns them into his story is so impressive and is one of the reasons I love reading his books so much. I can’t explain why I love some of the parts so much because it would definitely be a spoiler, but just know that if you loved the pervious Riordan books, you will for sure love this book. It was my favorite book of the series and I’m sure you will all love it as much as I did.

And the ending, oh goodness where to begin? All of the suspense that started with the ending of Mark of Athena and continued to grow through the House of Hades led up to the end of the House of Hades. Both plots came together, characters overcame internal struggles, and a problem may have been solved. The cliff hanger wasn’t as huge and annoying as the one in the Mark of Athena, but was definitely enough to make me extremely excited to read the next and last book in the series. As sad as I am to see the series come to an end, I cannot wait to see what twists and turns lie ahead, and how it is going to end.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves action and romance and likes Greek mythology or could love Greek mythology. If you want to buy this book, you can buy it on amazon here.