Really torn between 3.5 stars and 4. Mostly because Tobias was acting like a total douchenozzle throughout the vast majority of this book, which really irritated me, and the cliffhanger at the end made me want to through the book out the window and shriek expletives into the night.
However, the last two hundred pages had me incapable of putting the book down, Roth's portrayal of Tris' emotional struggle, while often obnoxious, was actually stunningly realistic. As someone who has experienced those same suicidal feelings, it was shockingly real, particularly her realization near the end that she did NOT want to die.
I see a lot of people complaining about Tris transforming from a strongass woman into Bella Swan, which is a legit complaint when scenes of Tris crying and bemoaning her life interrupt the plot. But when you get to a part like that, stop and think.
This girl has lost her parents. She was forced to kill a close friend of hers and burdened with the attempt to hide that from her other friends. She's undergoing a lot of stressful emotional shit, and I do not want to meet the person who can ignore all that and not break down crying every five minutes. At the very least, we can rejoice in the fact that Roth did not pull a cheapass cop-out by blanking out an entire chapter to express the character's feelings. She made you sit there and fucking experience it, and that is the difference between Tris' emotional struggle and Bella's weeny-ass tantrum because her boifran broke up with her.
Other than that, there were some great plot-twists that I kind of saw coming from a mile away and was still blown out of the water by when they finally came around, so bravo on that.
Was it better than Divergent? Eh. Was it worse than Divergent? Eh. Am I going to have to pick up the next installment? You bet your beautiful ass I'm going to. Do I recommend that fans of Divergent pick this up? UM DUH.
Might not have been comparable to the original, but it kept me wanting more, it stimulated my feels and got me raging in all the right ways, and its not Twilight. For that, I'm willing to toss the less-appealing parts up to the Second Book Curse and sit in front of my door, eagerly awaiting the next book.