Divergent (Divergent Series #1)

Divergent - Veronica Roth See my chapter-by-chapter review here.I can see why this book got popular. It has some very quotable lines that address some very thought-provoking issues. Unfortunately, this book can't give a good home to those lines. It's just random lines that get tossed out before the actual story and characters move on to doing even more stupidity. No one lives up to their pretty words and platitudes.This book also makes some stabs at being good. There's no love triangle, and there's more female characters (although by no means are things actually equal). There's points at this book where I can see good writing shining through. But again, the quality is not maintained. When it gets bad, it gets really bad.The world is just a hot mess of crazy that never gets properly explained. Supposedly this is a self-contained version of Chicago set in a dystopic future...but they have the same level of technology and comfort as we do? Where are they getting their gas, their glass, their metals, their plastics, all those things that are required for a technological society? Never explained, along with a million other things.The concept of Divergent isn't explained nearly well enough. It comes across as being "normal" in a society of people who are partially lobotomized. (That's the only thing I can think of for why everyone can't be both smart and brave, or kind and selfless, or really ANY two qualities at once.) It's also not explained why Divergent is so dangerous. They say it's because people who think in more than one way can't be controlled, but there's no word on why the leaders want their people controlled when everyone seems happy to go along with the status quo. Even Tris doesn't think about any sort of rebelling until people start shooting at her. The writing is simplistic and the main character is just painfully stupid. There's a weird anti-intellectual streak to this book as they demonize the 'smart' faction for doing stuff like 'fair and balanced news reporting.' This whole book is really just a hot, hot mess of confusion and bad logic.