For such a highly-recommended (let alone incredibly popular) novel, I wasn't as impressed as I expected to be. Tris, as a lead, was just okay. Sometimes I felt like she had to hold our hand a lot and remind us of a lot of things again and again like we've forgotten. For example, we're told Tris is small. Then we're shown that she gets devastated in a fight with Peter because his size, and speed outmatch hers. Then we're constantly reminded that she's tiny, short, small, etc. by her friends (& enemies!). And finally, even her trainer, Four tells her to play up her weakness for protection, which grated me wrong in the sense that she had to feign weakness, but I understood it, and then the more I thought about it, the more I hated it because, to me, it seemed more that Tris was manipulating her friends to stay safe, rather than admitting to her friends what had happened out of honesty.
I have a lot of complaints about the novel (because it didn't personally satisfy me), but that doesn't take away from the fact that it was well-written with a few too-rushed scenes her parents deaths , and some exciting ideas with a weak ending Really! You heard her voice, Tobias..? That was what snapped you out of a medically-induced killing trance--true love? That felt so weak to me. Much too easy of an out as opposed to Tris being smart and resourceful and knocking him out while she figured out a way to deactivate the simulation.
It's a light dystopian without much emphasis on what has happened to force the world into the way it is, let alone how life has to function more difficultly now with all the new problems their world faces. I would have appreciated a little more detail about Tris' world and think that would have rounded out the novel much more nicely.