Editor Showdown: Debating the End of Veronica Roth’s Allegiant

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Alright you guys, it’s time to take on a serious issue in this week’s showdown — the ending of Allegiant. Closing the literal and figurative final chapter of any YA franchise is always tough, but this one was especially bad since — SERIOUSLY, WE’RE WARNING YOU, SPOILER ALERT! — Tris, THE BOOK’S MAIN PROTAGONIST, dies at the end. *gasp* We’ve seen plenty of deaths throughout this series, heck, YA series in general, but this was a huge blow to Divergent fans.

While some were devastated (like my cohort, Kaitlin) by the tragic ending, there is a small minority (including myself, a.k.a. Amanda) that believes the ending completely serves the series justice. Let’s discuss in detail, shall we?

Amanda, Editor: Let me start this off by saying I haven’t read the book yet, but I was NOT able to stay spoiler-free. (Ugh, yes, I know. I’ll read it soon; I JUST bought it!) I hate surprises, I want to know how everything ends right away, so it was my choice. With that said, when I found out the ending of the book (though, I still am not 100% clear on the circumstances around it, only that Tris essentially does it to “save” everybody), I thought, “What a poetic way to end the story.” Why, do I think that, you ask? Well…

The beginning of Divergent is all about Tris being a member of Abnegation — the Selfless faction. Hello, is there anything more selfless than sacrificing yourself for the ones you love? It’s what Tris’ parents did in the first novel, and the idea of her doing that seems so full circle. Also, she chose to be in Dauntless in the first novel, which honors Bravery. Sacrificing yourself for the greater good? That seems to be the perfect combination of selflessness AND bravery.

One thing that really sold me on this was Veronica Roth‘s interview with MTV’s Josh Horowitz. She explains everything so beautifully and defends her decision. In fact, she’s had this ending planned out from the beginning!

Also, I know I’m not alone in thinking this, as Shailene Woodley — who will star as Tris on the big screen — recently revealed that she loved the ending, saying: “I think it’s awesome, and the coolest decision that’s ever happened in the young adult novel world. I’m such a fan!”

I am too, Shailene. I am too.

Kaitlin, Associate Editor: Like many other Initiates, I was counting down the days until the conclusion of the Divergent trilogy. On release day, I even went to a launch event where Veronica Roth gave miniature spoilers on the series finale (along with Ansel Elgort and Christian Madsen, squee!), yet I still was ill-prepared for what was to come…

Overall, I was disappointed by the novel’s overly-political plot. The government’s always been a part of the story, but the focus seemed to stray from true action, not to mention Four and Tris’ love. And in the moments where the central couple was together — including the possible sex scene? Can’t really tell if it happened or not. I hate that it was left to interpretation; I wanted it to be spelled out! — everything seemed like an afterthought. Lame.

But we’re here to talk about the ending, right? So here we go… I get the whole full-circle thing; yes, Tris did the same thing her parents did in the first book. However, since Caleb volunteered to sacrifice himself, I don’t see a legitimate enough reason why she didn’t let him go through with it. He practically led his sister to her execution in Insurgent, so what the eff? I understand that she didn’t know if he was motivated by love or guilt in volunteering for the task, but either way, he was totally okay with her dying for Jeanine’s sake, so why should he be granted with the privilege of life, while Tris is laid to rest?

Now, there’s an unmistakable void — a bit theatrical, I know — for those who were looking forward to Tris and Four, post-drama. No one said they needed to have a cookie-cutter ending and live happily ever after. But after Veronica promised that Four would make it through to the end of the franchise, for fear of teenage-girl backlash, you would think that she wouldn’t kill off the story’s main character for the same exact reason.

Who do YOU agree with? Did you like the ending? Or were you not a fan? Start the debate in the comments section!

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86 Responses to "Editor Showdown: Debating the End of Veronica Roth’s Allegiant"

  1. Teen.com
    Lilly says:

    This was such a disappointing ending :( I was shaking for most of the book looking forward to what would happen next. Suddenly she DIES leaving Tobias in depression. Honestly if there was to be another book to come out, and I truthfully really want one, I would read it, maybe to clear up the relationships in the books and plot holes that never was revealed. I think just letting us fall in love with these characters and falling in love with their lives and killing them off is sick! Veronica Roth took the easy way out by saying it was because “she learned something” is wrong. She could have a an epiphany where she realizes what her parents did, instead of getting shot to realize. I want more book give us a little more future on the relationship we have been craving. Give us a better ending! If Veronica Roth would have given a better ending than to kill of tris I would totally go for the book. I think if Veronica Roth really cared about her fans, she would at least give Tobias and tris a better ending.

  2. Teen.com
    Ashley says:

    It’s absurd to end a book this way! It’s as though she thought that the only ending with substance had to be an unhappy one! She spent thousands of pages making us understand Tris and Four, to overcome struggles -society, love, personal demons, death, sacrifice- only to take a match to all of it in the end and make Tris’s death meaningless and leave us with a half-baked shell of who Four had been the entire time. I cannot fathom what she was thinking deconstructing everything she made us fall in love with?!? Maybe fans can get some closure with an alternate movie ending & or a 5th book to change Tris’s death!

  3. Teen.com
    Dani says:

    I liked the fact that someone died in the end but I hated the fact that it was Tris. When something tragic happens at the end of a story it makes it more believable and you are so invested in the characters that your heart breaks while reading it. However in this book it made absolutely no sense to kill Tris with a gun shot from someone we just met and after all the times that she had already been shot and survived. I believe Caleb should have died for his sister and proved to Tris that she is not that one that always has to do the sacrificing. Tobias and Tris should have finally had SEX and they should of helped build a new Chicago together with all their friends.

  4. Teen.com
    SunnyHarry says:

    I am only halfway through the book but was reading some reviews of it and found out tris dies near the end. I feel like I don’t want to read anymore as the characters have become so real and Roth has ruined the whole series for me. As other people said, she made Tris survive the death serum only to realise she had no idea how she could end it without writing another 3 books so took the lazy way out and had her shot. Personally, I feel that she has completely torn the series apart by doing this. I am glad other people think the same as not a single part of me feels that this was an appropriate and brave ending for Tris. It was unthoughtful and rushed. If she was going to kill her off she needed to write atleast another book to lead up to a little bit more. It was just so random and rushed. I have lost all respect for Roth.

  5. Teen.com
    shirshendu says:

    i just finished reading the book and i was truely devastated by the ending i mean why roth had to kill Tris although she explains in her voice to be brave and she didnt wanted the happily live after ending but causing her death is a totally different path that she choses. She would have written or made Tris live with some resistance of death serum but no David had to shoot her i mean why wouldnt she write that she lives after getting shot?? i mean people do live the doctors would have treated her and moreover if david hadnt arrived she would have changed the ending that she experiences the death serum but eventually lives although i am hurt about her death but what about tobias, she also should have thought of him..

  6. Teen.com
    Sophia says:

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  7. Teen.com
    Pedro G says:

    The ending was awful. Ok, it’s a teen novel but teens have a brain.
    Why put Tris through so much only to blow her up by some virtually unknown character? What’s the point of the whole iniciation!? Makes no sense. I think Veronica Roth realized there was no way she could end the trilogy properly (as the universe she created was too big) and chose the easy way out.
    For instance Tris going from hating Caleb to saving him for no clear reason was very disappointing.
    I wish she’d go back and write 6-9 more books so this has a real ending, not a fake one.

  8. Teen.com
    Bella says:

    Ok so Like most people I devoured and shut myself out of the world for three days to read the first two books. when I came to the third I was expecting something major to happen, but nothing ever did. All I got was a build of tension to come to flat resolutions with no climax. The problem with having Tobias and Tris narrate the final book was that Tobias sounded to much like tris’ character. I was often confused by who was talking and had to re read or go back to the beginning of the chapter. Tris’ death was hard on me. I had fallen deeply in love with her character she was everything I wanted to be. Empowered, strong, resiliant; but to kill her off by a gun shot FROM DAVID! after she survived the death serum that no one can and went through it saying “I will live. I will not die”, to then die was disappointing to say the least. I understood why she died. But after she died the book lost its purpose. It was written in her point of view and the characters had been built up in her point of (including tobais’ which is why him narrating didn’t make sense to me) view, and so she needed to resolve the characters and the book. I also felt like she lost when she died, even though she won. I just felt as though everything she had been doing and everything didn’t matter once she’d died. The purpose of the story diminished. Overall well written and good at tension building but disappointing end and weak plot. 2/10

  9. Teen.com
    Dee says:

    I’m sorry but why is someone who hasn’t read the book trying to give her insight on her thoughts to it? That’s ridiculous…

  10. Teen.com
    isabel says:

    to be honest i loved the first two books so much and like so many fans and people i also fell in love with the characters but the ending did not make any sense to me first of all tris got shot alot in the first two books and she survived every one of them so why end it by her getting shot and then right after she survives the death serlum caleb was a betrayer tris left abnegation saying her brother was more selfless than her and at the end he was selfish saying that tris still saved him from his execution at the end i felt really bad for tobias saying that one of his fears was watching tris die and not being able to do anything when i read this i didn’t have the same thoughts as veronica roth i know mabey we cant do any thing but hopefully they change the ending in the movie allegiant :(

    • Teen.com
      Pedro G says:

      Yeah, good point! She was basically shot to pieces throghout the trilogy so in the end she comes out as basically incompetent. Veronica Roth ran out of ideas for the character, i think.
      It was like “She’s weak & frail, let’s blow her up and wrap this up!!”.

  11. Teen.com
    Alex says:

    That first editor can’t really be debating anything without reading the book first….

    Anyway, I hated Allegiant. The entire book — NOT JUST THE ENDING — was horrible. I don’t care that she killed off Tris, I care about the horrendous quality, plot-holes galore, and illogical nature of the entire book.

  12. Teen.com
    Bre says:

    I’m not really the target market for these book at all but read them anyway. The first two I loved. Then the third book I kept waiting for something and sort of knew what would happen about half way through like it was getting worse and worse so it had to have a terrible ending like this

  13. Teen.com
    Noha says:

    I hated the ending and couldn’t get into the 3rd book as much as I did the first 2. I’m not quite the target age group for these books but man did I suffer through that 3rd book. I know they hired Oscar winning screen writers to adapt insurgent into a movie i hope the allegiant screen writers either change the ending or offer alternative endings because this ending was sooo the easy way out for the author, using death, minimum effort for maximum reaction. So what society was saved in the end if the main characters were not around to enjoy it, I didn’t fall in love with the society I fell in love with the characters. Tris does and as far as I’m concerned a large part of four dies with her so were left with no main character and a shadow of who four was. Soooo gloomy… We got enough of that in real life

  14. Teen.com
    Ioanna says:

    The book was the worst I have ever read there is no nice ending and there are a lot of was finishing it nicely. I don’t like the ending she has somehow change it.

  15. Teen.com
    Bree says:

    I think the ending to the series is sick and disgusting. How dare she let us fall in love with Tris and Tobias and their relationship just to kill Tris off in the end. I understand that every ending has to have some shock value, but killing the MAIN character was uncalled for. Then she just switched to Tobias’s point of view for the next couple of chapters like Tris’s death didn’t even happen or wasn’t important. I understand completely why Tris was the one to face the death serum, but I do not understand why she had to be shot and killed. I finished the series yesterday and still feel the pain and sadness of it today. Books are not supposed to do that to you. They should leave you content and happy and wanting more. Thanks to allegiant I have no desire to read any other book for a long time, and I will NEVER read anything by this author again.

  16. Teen.com
    Jo says:

    I am completely disgusted with the ending of this series. Why build up the relationship between Tris and Tobias, have her come full circle and then kill her off? Is there any good reason why for once Caleb couldn’t have stepped up and rescued her or that she recover from the wounds or even find that the entire ending was a fear simulation they were working through to find a way to resolution? There are many ways the series could have ended that could have made the selfless point without killing off a 16 year old who had grown so much throughout the first two books. Seems senseless to inflict even more pain on Four. This is one of the only series that I was actually mad at the ending and vowed I won’t go see the movies. Why get all wrapped up I. The love story just to have it end so badly and walk out depressed? We have enough in society today that is depressing and sad – I don’t want it in my entertainment. I’m not saying that Tris and Tobias should have had a fairy tale ending, but it would have been nice for them to have had a chance at a “normal” life! So disappointing!

  17. Teen.com
    Brianna says:

    I don’t think the last book even fits in with the story line. Like I can’t even bear the fact that Tobias might not even have a life up ahead of him because Tris is dead. I can’t see him getting together with Christina (no way) so idk. I wish Veronica Roth would change the ending because it’s just not right you know? I know we can’t do anything about it :( but I guess we have to live with it :(((

  18. Teen.com
    Em says:

    I agree, this book doesn’t even feel like it fits with the first two. I was actually starting to skim the last 200 pages or so because I was feeling so detached. I loved and devoured the first two and I was so excited to see how it all wrapped up. I am left feeling so disappointed and heartbroken. At a certain point, probably halfway through, I wasn’t really feeling anything for any of the characters in the third book. Tris & Tobias never really seemed to recover from their struggles in Insurgent. Tobias’ voice was just to similar to Tris’ in the last book, it became confusing as to who was narrating. Tobias was my favorite character in Divergent…he seemed to become weaker and weaker as the series progressed when it should have been the other way around, this was so disheartening. I could go on and on…I will just say that I am indifferent about the ending…I am more so displeased with the plot, pace and character development in the third book. VR could have very well sold that ending, but I just didn’t believe it, let alone did she make me feel much of anything for the characters by the end. Comparing it to the hunger games final book… I wasn’t in love with the ending either, but I believed it and felt that it was still satisfying. I don’t have that feeling with Allegiant.

    • Teen.com
      Jo says:

      I agree 100% with Em including opinion on Hunger games. I’d like to see the final book rewritten in this series… Why not expand the idea with a book with a completely different plot and ending?

      • Teen.com
        Phoebe says:

        A hunger games style ending would have definitely been better, as it still allows the damage done to be shown through Tris and Fours relationship but actually leaves a satisfying conclusion. I feel that all of Tris’ efforts in 1 and 2 are for nothing in the end as she leaves all her friends that she was so bent on protecting as shells of themselves, unable to function properly and can we just talk about how David is in a wheelchair and has probably never fired a gun, so how does he miraculously get a killshot on his first go – and after all the times Tris has been shot before? Her willingness to fight the death serum and then being like nah, I’ll die now when she gets shot? I even think it would’ve been better if Four killed himself and then there was a chapter where they reunite in heaven, able to watch the new city grow! Disappointed, VR – we need a rewrite!!!

  19. Teen.com
    Sylvia says:

    I can’t really understand how someone could like the ending after reading the two first books. It goes against them and it is totally nonsense. After everything Tris has been through she had to die from a gun shot.??? And Caleb who wanted so badly for her forgiveness let her save him without even trying to help? There is pretty selfish. Where is the sense in all of that? I think the author just wanted to create a repercussion around it not caring if it makes sense or even if it is fair with the character and the readers. If I had known this would be the ending I would never have waisted my time reading them. At least I would save time by not watching the movie at all. There is a lot of injustice suffering and deaths in our real lives to have to “live” in the books too.

  20. Teen.com
    Sylvia says:

    I can’t really understand how someone could like the ending after reading the two first books. It goes against them and it is totally nonsense. After everything Tris has been through she had to die from a gun shot.??? And Caleb who wanted so badly for her forgiveness let her save him without even trying to help? There is pretty selfish. Where is the sense in all of that? I think the author just wanted to create a repercussion around it not caring if it makes sense or even if it is fair with the character and the readers. If I had known this would be the ending I would never have waisted my time reading them. At least I would save time by not watching the movie at all.
    I think there are sadness, suffering, injustice, deaths enough in our real lives so we have to live it through the books also…
    There are violence, suffering, injustice, sadness and deaths in our real lives so have to live it through the book also

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