That is, if I would've been able to shake off the feeling that I was reading a calculated attempt - a good attempt - at following that OTHER blockbusters' example by releasing a very similar, but more commercially motivated 'product'.
And honestly, I wouldn't have cared less if Divergent had been awesome. The initiation rituals were pretty okay, thrilling even. Considering that they covered about 80% or 85% of the actual book this sounds good right? Well, yes and no. At some point you might find yourself wondering if this huge 'sporting event' is leading towards something bigger and better; some character development? A plot-line perhaps? Then, around page 400-or-so the story kickstarts! ... and...gets wrapped up faster than the speed of light. Very much in a 'huh..wait a minute?" sort of way.
So Roth delivers great action scenes and, during the process, wastes no time on something as pace-slowing as world-building. This seems a mistake. If you are to take your reader to a futuristic planet Earth that has been turned upside down, world-building is a necessity. Especially when dividing your citizens into five factions, each of them based on different virtues, such as bravery, honesty, intelligence etc, and they need to stay in their chosen faction for the rest of their lives.
Now, it seems highly unlikely that humankind would ever come to this primitive solution in order to create a smoothly running peaceful society. BUT solid logic is not something I demand in a dystopian book. So if the author would've done a bit of explaining.. instead she left me dangling and even took some of her ideas so far that they became, well, idiotic. The Dauntless for example, those who cultivate bravery in their members, jump out of speeding trains and buildings just for the hell of it, seemingly losing members by the dozens. Now if that doesn't sound like a perfectly functioning society, I don't know what does! ;-)
Overall, I liked Divergent well enough. But after the touching and compelling Hunger Games, this is a mindless entertainment filled late night snack. I read that Roth is only 23 though, so I'm fairly confident that the best is yet to come!