Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Insurgent is the second of a trilogy about a dystopia in which people live divided into factions based on a virtue or principle. At the end of the first novel, the faction system seemed to be falling apart, as the Erudite faction used the Dauntless to attack the Abnegation. In this novel, narrator Tris and her friends are refugees seeking help from the other factions, Candor and Amity, and from the factionless, those who have been rejected from the faction system. Meanwhile they try to scheme ways to bring down the leader of Erudite who masterminded the attack from the last novel. This book shows us new aspects of the dystopia world through spending time exploring the factions that Tris knows the least about, Candor, which values honesty, and Amity, which values peace and friendship (and uses tranquilizer/recreational drugs to achieve them). The story is psychologically heavy, as torture scenes delve into character and show how sick and twisted the villain is. Tris is a truly admirable heroine, making big sacrifices, figuring out complex problems and mysteries, and accepting responsibility for her mistakes. There are a few steamy scenes between her and her boyfriend Tobias, as well as some fights that show they are both still learning about communication and trust. This relationship is basically healthy, just stressed by the insane circumstances they’re dealing with. This novel ended with a great revelation that surprised me and opens up a lot of interesting possibilities for the final volume. I truly enjoyed this book and am looking forward to the next in the series, Allegiant, coming out in October.