The simulation has ended, Tris and Tobias are safe in the Aminity compound with Marcus and her brother, Caleb and a few others. Now that the Erudite have shown their hand, Tris and Tobias must figure out how to fight back. Together, they find the factionless and the mother that Tobias thought was dead. It turns out that the factionless have been building and waiting to take over the city, and take down the Erudite and maybe the entire system. Tris and Tobias then move to the Candor trying to gain support to invade the Erudite compound and find the information that so many Abegnation were willing to die for. Through all of this, Tris is trying to remain true to herself and her Divergent way of thinking and she is trying to live up to the memory of her parents and Will.
There is barely room to breathe in this novel. There are so few moments of lightness and that makes the book fly by. Tris grows even more as a character in this book, and readers get to see how she fits into different factions. Her Abegnation upbringing makes her selfless and that puts her in danger many times, but her Dauntless attitude and Erudite reasoning keep pushing her to survive. Tobias also becomes a different character. He is struggling with both parents in this book, and might be too quick to trust his mother who is now the leader of the factionless.
I did not feel like Insurgent succumbed to the sequel slump. In fact, I did have to remind myself several times that this was only the second book and that Tris surely couldn't die in the novel, although there were several heartbreaking deaths. The action (or maybe lack of action) between Tris and Tobias was difficult to deal with, but you do get the feeling that these two crazy kids will work through their differences, if they manage to live through the last book. I'm hoping they do, but I wouldn't put it past Veronica Roth to do something really drastic in the 3rd book that will really change their relationship. I don't think that Tobias will die, but I'm not so sure that they will ride off into the sunset either.
Fans of Divergent will definitely enjoy Insurgent, although I have to say that you must read these in order. I personally could have used some Divergent Cliff Notes to remind myself of some of the plot points. I also think that anyone who loved the Hunger Games will enjoy the Divergent Trilogy. I keep trying to convince my husband to read them, and his exact words were "do more kids die?" Well, yeah, it's a teen dystopia. If you want a happy, shiny book you should read a teen utopia, but those books just don't sell as well.
I'm still keeping my eye on the IMDb for more news about the Divergent movie. So far Four/Tobias has not been cast. Barely anyone has been cast quite frankly, but I'm not holding out hope that Four will be of a crush worthy age. That's why the book is always better--you don't feel like a huge fool for having a literary crush, but when it's a screen crush on a 20 year old, that's just weird.
Oh, and how's this for a parting line:
"That's when the shooting started'
Way to leave use hanging! The release of the 3rd book is slated for Fall 2013, so the wait isn't that long, but what an ending.