Literature with Melinda

Melinda Rydberg
mrydberg@css.edu

The overall theme of last week’s article was Harry Potter because of homecoming. However, St. Scholastica students and staff may be tired of all the Harry Potter themed news and activities around campus after an entire week of celebrating. Even though most like Harry Potter, the wizarding world may be a little too much for muggles to get used to in only one week. Keeping this in mind, students may want to take a break from the spells and transfigurations. They can easily do that by picking up another great book from the library.

One series that is sure to get students’ attention is The Divergent Series by Veronica Roth. There are three novels in this series — Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant — that will surely captivate the mind. These books are considered young adult dystopian fiction. In other words, they have a strong main character, a futuristic setting, the appearance of a perfect-imperfect community, and an intense conclusion.

The main concept of these books is there are five factions, or groups, that live in a futuristic version of Chicago. Each faction has their own specific virtue that they live their lives by: Abnegation, the selfless; Amity, the peaceful; Candor, the honest; Dauntless, the brave; and Erudite, the intelligent. Each faction is made up of families that live and raise their children by their own virtue. However, when teenagers turn sixteen, they must take a placement test and choose which faction they want to be a part of for the rest of their lives. From then on, the storyline continues to build up, gets more intense, and keeps the readers at the edge of their seats. From peace to violence and from love to murder, these novels capture it all; people are sure to feel almost every emotion while reading these books.

Now, even if this series isn’t getting some people excited already, please take the time to at least start reading the first novel, Divergent. Readers may be surprised and actually really like it! Even if someone just needs a short break from homework and studying, this series can easily do the trick. While the novels are a little out of the ordinary, they are more relatable than the Harry Potter series to some, as the characters experience similar dilemmas about family, friends, and love. For this reason, students might be able to connect with the characters more easily, making the reading more meaningful and enjoyable. Stay tuned in next week for another great book, and in the meantime, happy reading!

Melinda is a Freshman Biochemistry Major, planning on pursuing Pharmaceutical Science and Research.