Release Date: October 22nd 2013
Genres: YA Dystopia
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
Series: book three of three
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Summary: One choice will define you.
What if your whole world was a lie?
What if a single revelation—like a single choice—changed everything?
What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?
The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.
But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.
SPOILERS! There are spoilers included in this post about Allegiant so if you haven’t read the book yet and are thinking of reading it please don’t read this post!
Before I start off this review I think it’s important that I let you all know my overall thoughts on the series. I loved Divergent. I read it after Insurgent had came out and quickly read both books in only three days. I was completely invested in the series the first two books, and while Tris did make some questionable decisions in Insurgent I could sympathize with her and understand her motives. I even reread Divergent this summer because all the hype surrounding the filming of the movie got me wanting to revisit the Divergent world.
From the beginning I didn’t feel the same connections for the characters I had felt in both previous books. I felt like the only real important characters in the story were Tobias and Tris. The other characters were just sort of there. Caleb and Peter never really did anything for the story. Caleb has his sort of moment in the end but even that wasn’t enough for me. When Edward and Uriah die I never really felt anything for either of them. In all honesty I didn’t even remember much about Uriah, so I never felt any sort of emotional connection with him in Allegiant. And when he dies I mostly just felt indifferent.
For me, Allegiant was very much a plot orientated book. I know some people didn’t like the direction the book took with the GD and GP’s, everything beyond the fence, and the two separate rebellions, but I did. I welcomed the new sudden change in the story. Plot wise it was all done well. It added conflict to the story that just wouldn’t have been there before. Jeanine Matthew’s was dead and they were beyond the fence. They needed new problems and threats to keep the story going. The two separate rebellions seemed realistic. If only the rebellion in Chicago happened in Allegiant all would have seemed too neat and tidy. Because, the world just doesn’t work like that. People don’t just work like that. There isn’t only ever just one group of people fighting for power, there lots and lots of different groups with different intentions always fighting. It’s the way the world works.
I still don’t know how I feel about Tobias and Tris’ relationship in Allegiant. I loved them in Divergent and was rooting for them to overcome everything in Insurgent but somewhere in Allegiant they lost me a bit. In the middle or so of Allegiant I started to think that maybe Tris and Tobias wouldn’t end up together in the end. They didn’t show any major warning signs of breaking up but there relationship just didn’t seem all that healthy at one point. It was clear they still loved each other though. What I’ve admired from the start of their relationship is how they always recognized the strength the other one has since the beginning. Tobias never viewed Tris as some sort of damsel in distress he had to constantly save and Tris always viewed Tobias as a warrior who could handle anything. I admired that aspect of their relationship; it was nice to read about a YA couple who were both strong. And not have a guy constantly having to go save the girl because he thought she couldn’t handle something. But while I always admired this I felt like in Allegiant that aspect of their relationship was taken too far.
I could stay and try to comfort him, but I need answers about my mother, and I’m not going to wait any longer. — Allegiant, Veronica Roth
Call me old fashioned but I thought some of their reactions to each other’s sadness wasn’t all too healthy for their relationship. If my partner was feeling distressed or upset I would make it a point to go out of my way to at least talk to them and I’d hope they’d do the same for me. I understood Tris wanted answers in this scene but what annoyed me was that she assumes Tobias is so strong he doesn’t need her to comfort him so she was going to leave and do what was important to her. But in the book she makes time to go visit Uriah in the hospital before looking for answers about her mother. Right after she says the quote above. If Tris had time to go visit Uriah while he was in a coma why couldn’t sne go comfort Tobias for a little bit? He was her boyfriend over all.
One of the reasons I loved Tobias so much in the beginning of the series was because he was such a badass. He projected this aura of strength and leadership but in Allegiant he was anything but. Tobias was weak and distressed and made quite a few bad decisions that made no sense to me. There was no real catalyst for his behavior in Allegiant. It came out of nowhere and while I understand he wanted to feel useful and do something he made some pretty un-Tobias like choices that didn’t sit well with me. The opposite happened for Tris in Allegiant though. I was probably halfway into the book when it hit me just how wise and mature Tris was now compared to the beginning of the series. She stumbled and did a few not so nice things too in Allegiant but in the end she proved to be the one who matured the most.
I understand why the ending to Allegiant is controversial. I get why some readers feel cheated and angry that it ended the way it did. I know no one wanted Tris to die and I know we all wanted Tobias and Tris to end up together in the end. We’ve been on this really long journey with the characters and as a reader I understand why people wanted the book to end a certain way. I wanted it to end a certain way. But with seventy or so pages left in Allegiant I suddenly knew which direction the story would go – and I got frantic. At first I was in denial, than I got angry, and then I got teary eyed before getting angry again. No one expected Tris to die. But unlike most readers I understand why Tris had to die. Everything would of seemed too neat and tidy and unrealistic if Tobias and Tris both survived and had a happily ever after. And let’s be honest—if Tris went through such a breakdown when she shot Will after only knowing him for a few weeks imagine what kind of damage being the one to send Caleb to his death would do to her. She’d never recover. Since Divergent the true meaning of bravery has always been questioned in this series. The line between cowardice, stupidity and bravery often got blurred throughout the whole series. But in the end Veronica Roth finally lets us know the true meanings of bravery and Tris and Tobias both stand as an example of each.
Sometimes bravery involves laying down your life for something bigger than yourself, or for someone else. Sometimes it involves giving up everything you have ever known, or everyone you have ever loved, for the sake of something greater. But sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes it is nothing more than gritting your teeth through pain, and work of every day, the slow walk toward a better life. — Allegiant, Veronica Roth
Allegiant was in no way a perfect book but it wasn’t a bad book either. Honestly, I enjoyed it and while the ending made me upset at first the longer I give myself time to process the ending the more okay with it I am. The only thing that still feels like an ache inside my chest is whenever I think of Tobias moving on with his life after losing Tris. It seems almost unfair for him to have lost her after everything he’s gone through. There were also a few things left unexplained that I wish we got the answer too; like why Tobias wasn’t actually divergent and why the death serum didn’t work on Tris, etc. This series continues to be one of my favorites and I’m okay with the way everything ended. But in all honesty, next year when I see Divergent on the big screen I have no doubt I will end up crying just thinking about the way it all ends for them.