“If You’re not Veronica Roth…”

“If you’re not Veronica Roth calling to apologize, I don’t want to hear it.” That is what I was about to say to the sales call I got from Illinois shortly after finishing “Allegiant” (character deaths tend to impact me greatly).

“Allegiant” is the last book in the “Divergent” trilogy by Veronica Roth a Chicago native.  Suzanne Collins (author of “The Hunger Games”) and Veronica Roth have some things in common in their writing styles, that I personally love. One of those things being, they make you cry. A lot. Good tears, bad tears, they write stories that make the tears flow. Which I’ve come to find is something I love and admire about their stories.

I’ve been, what I call, “Book hopping” lately. I’ve been picking up numerous books, but find myself unable to finish many. This is why: I have no emotional connection to the characters, their story, or the world they live in. The worst thing is, I can’t find any sort of message in the book. Nothing truly deep that makes me question myself. When I find none of this I become bored and move on. Veronica and Suzanne both, in my opinion, have written books with characters, stories and a world to which I became connected. They both left many beautiful meanings and lessons to see and learn.

Let’s touch on the worlds that were created. While they may have been exaggerated from today’s world, still they speak to problems we have now in our society and humanity, problems I wish we didn’t have. In “The Hunger Games” Suzanne deals with many issues such as violence for entertainment. Think of shows like “Survivor”, while it may not be real, it’s pretty much a gentler version of  the games in “The Hunger Games”. She also opened my eyes to our society’s over indulgence, and over attention to the superficial. Nicki Minaj is an example of that superficiality; she looks as if she walked right out of the Capitol. She is only one example of many.

Suzanne and Veronica have many points and issues that complement each other. In “Divergent” Veronica explores things such as bravery and selflessness. She paints a picture of how becoming too obsessed with knowledge and power can corrupt people, but that they are not inherently bad things. People become corrupt by those things by the choices they make. She also goes into the other extreme. Keeping peace to the extent of being too passive and standing by doing nothing while horrible atrocities are being committed is a way of avoiding the conflict, not solving it. She delves deeply into the true meaning of forgiveness as well. Which has made me think quite a lot.

What I love about the books these two authors have written is not solely in the fact that they made me form an emotional attachment to their characters to the extent that I felt their pain or joy and cried when they died. It’s the fact that there is meaning to the stories and they draw me in with their lessons which make me ask questions about myself. Both of these women made me fall in love with their stories, not because they were preachy and shoved their beliefs down my throat, but because they made me think about things I’d never considered. They told me stories with meaning and power.

And so I thank you, Veronica Roth and Suzanne Collins (even though you’ll probably never see this). Thank you for writing these stories that have touched my life in ways you’ll never know. Never ever apologize for them.


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