At more than 500 pages, Roth’s trilogy second seems daunting, but the length is a non-issue, as the action never slows as the fascinating characters develop. Tris and Tobias’ relationship matures realistically, and the absence of a love triangle keeps the reader’s attention where it should be: on the incredibly addictive plot. The ending is a high point — just when you think you might not get enough information to satisfy, the perfect amount of mystery is revealed.
Tris has always been brave, but never has her courage been called upon to such an extent. War threatens all factions, and Tris and Tobias must form unexpected alliances as Jeanine Matthews proves to be the most brilliantly dangerous woman in the city. Her powerful simulation serums threaten to overtake everyone Tris holds dear — unless she sacrifices herself. (KATHERINE TEGEN, May, 544 pp., $17.99, HC, ISBN: 9780062024046, 14 & Up)