I think how fast I plowed through the two books in this series speaks for itself. I didn't really know what to expect going in to this series - the covers caught me, and how many positive reviews. I was still wary going into the second book, because I've read many trilogies where the second book is the weakest link. I can't give my full opinion until the next one is released, of course, but still!There were elements that I disliked, especially in the first part of the book. Authors always have a careful path to tread when it comes to female characters, because the expectations are so much higher. It's not just writing someone believable, it's writing someone who doesn't fall into sexist tropes, etc. There are many things that both male and female characters can do, but when writing a woman you have to walk a fine line - not necessarily fair, when male characters are not held to the same examination, but that's the way it is. Anyway. There were time when I found Four patronizing, and there were times when I found myself wondering if the main character would have such a problem with killing and death if they were male. I really don't know the answer to that, and I think that's representative of the balance we do in terms of offsetting realistic characters with making men too strong or women too weak. The story, though - it is compelling, and sucked me in again. We get to learn more about Four's past, and the other factions - about those who have no faction. We get hints that there is more to this world than we think, and if we get the answers to those questions in the last book, I think it'll fill the gap that some people have been bothered by, so far. We get insights into other characters, too - glimpses that make me want more, sometime, but are still nice to have. They soften the surroundings, make everything more human. That's where another one of my problems, though. Caleb and Peter... I find them to have the least satisfying background. Peter's change of heart isn't really explained well enough for me - he just didn't want to 'owe' her? There's nothing throughout the first book that would have given me any indication that he would do something like that. This is the man who tried to kill Tris, after all. Caleb - again, not enough explanation. Are we just supposed to believe that Jeanine got to him at a young age, and that's it? Nothing more? (Though I have to say, I was pleased that I guessed from the moment I read that someone had just left the room before she came in that someone she knew was involved.) The ending of the book is a brutal cliffhanger - I just hope that the plot coming after it is compelling enough, and not just a letdown. There's potential there, but it'll have to be handled right. I hope it is, because I really enjoyed this book so far. It's undeniably dark, but not in the soul-crushing way that The Hunger Games was, imo.