For those who are paying attention in the YA world, there’s a new dog in town, and that would be Veronica Roth‘s debut Divergent.
In this new, thoughtful dystopian novel, everyone in society is divided into one of five factions, which will ultimately dictate every aspect of their lives. On an appointed day each year, all sixteen-year-olds are old to select the faction that will decide everything about their future, from their clothes to their friends to their lifelong role in the community. The factions are:
Candor (the honest)
Abnegation (the selfless)
Dauntless (the brave)
Amity (the peaceful)
Erudite (the intelligent)
All virtues, of course, but what Roth does so well is to explore what happens when one virtue is pursued at the expense of all others.
Without giving away the plot, it’s enough to say that Beatrice, who has grown up in the Abnegation faction, faces a far more challenging decision than most. Her decisions, and the consequences, will make her question everything – including who she is. And Tris, as she ultimately goes by, learns that the secrets that she keeps could save – or destroy– much that she holds dear.
So. AWESOME COOL STUFF, RIGHT???
Well the amazing Deb Driza (whose YA debut is coming out in 2012!) has put together a little experiment: what happens when you try to live each week by a Divergent faction? She’s not recommending you quit your job and immediately join a volunteer effort in Japan (unless you want to, in which case, godspeed and good luck, and let us know where to donate). No, this is more of doing our everyday life but with a certain focus on a single virtue. We will all give this a shot, then blog about the results on Friday. If you want to join in head over to Deb’s blog and link in the comments…the more the merrier!
So to start with Tris’s upbringing, we’re going with Abnegation.
According to the Divergent fansite, Abnegation means:
- To refuse or deny oneself (some rights, conveniences, etc.); reject, renounce.
- To relinquish, give up
Veronica says the faction is about selflessness; stripping unnecessary things from life in order to help people forget themselves and do away with vanity, greed, and envy.
Well, sheeeee-it! This should be easy! I’m a mom, aren’t I? I abnegate all damn day long! Right?
Hmmm….tune in Friday to see how I really do!