Insurgent (Divergent)

Insurgent  - Veronica Roth My mother is the only reason I managed to finish this book. She loved Divergent and has just finished re-reading it but for some reason she wanted me to read this one first so I had to force myself to finish.This time around I had no connection to the characters. They seemed drastically different. More juvenile with lots of sulking and ruminating on problems. Everything is seen through the lens of Tris and Four's relationship which acted as a means of constant personal conflict. I had no patience for the angst that came out of that conflict, or for Tris's new-found suicidal nature. I was here for the dystopia, for the tragedies, hard choices and sacrifices to be made. One of the few good scenes is when the Erudite deliver a message to the Divergent (which are more numerous than first thought), to Tris, via a kind of suicide note, and Tris is forced to make a split-second decision of who to save and who to sacrifice. That was startling and gruesome, and exactly what I was looking for. As for Marcus the robot, Marcus the mouthpiece -I found his character difficult to comprehend. He's an empty character the reader is supposed to hate but it's hard to do so when he doesn't show emotion or react to anything despite being publicly beaten by his own son. He has no comeback. He says nothing. Why did he submit Four to repeated physical abuse? There's no answer because he doesn't acknowledge he did it or the accusations. Other than a hate figure, he's a mouthpiece for plot progression. Without him we wouldn't find out the secret to this dystopian dynamic. Peter is an odd one. I guess you could say he's a frenemy -an enemy who can also be an ally under the right circumstances. I wonder how close he is to his family. Does he love them? Love seems an alien thing to him and now that he's been reunited with them, will he fight for them? Will he change?As I grew closer to the last page and freedom, I swore if Roth introduced zombies outside "the fence" the book would meet the wall at lightning speed. It didn't happen but it was close.The ending is drawn out and predictable, concluding with a revelation, plus cliffhanger. By now I just wanted this book to be over. I'm only mildly curious:- As to what the revelation means in terms of the Factionless new world order.- What the relationship is between Tris and this Edith Prior.- About the significance of being divergent in light of this new information. How can that help whatever's left outside the fence?Insurgent feels very padded. Not a lot happens for a long time. It needed to be tighter, punchier, be a more faithful continuation of Divergent's story and characters, and less about romantic entanglements.