Delirium by Lauren Oliver
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Synopsis from Goodreads:Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that one love -the deliria- blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the governments demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.
But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love
I made the mistake of picking this up at about 10.30 last night, about 60% read, and then couldnt put it down until i finished, well after midnight. The minute i finished i jumped on goodreads and updated my status with "OMFG, nooooooooooooo! you cant end a book like that! Thankgod i didnt read this book before the sequel came out". Yep. The ending was that good and that shocking.
In Delirium, we follow the story of Lena, a 17 year old girl. She lives in a world where people fear love and believe it to be a disease. A particularly deadly disease that needs to be erradicated. In an effort to prevent people falling in love, at the age of 18, you are given a procedure, where the part of your brain that processes love and emotion is removed, and you are then known as a "cured". Lena is taught all her life, that once she is cured, she will be happy, steady, content. She's spent all her life looking forward to the day she will have her procedure, but then, 2 months before the big day, Lena falls in love, and her whole world and everything shes ever believed in is turned upside down.
The story starts out somewhat slowly, with the author allowing us time to get to know Lena, and build this world that calls love "the deliria". Lauren Oliver's writing style is quite poetic. Her descriptions of colours and sights and characters is in depth and you quickly get a mental picture of what this world and its inhabitants would look like. Im not a huge fan of poetic descriptions. Im more of a dialougue sort of person, but i think Lauren Oliver does a good job at not being overly "wordy" and her descriptions, whilst detailed, are broken up into smaller, easier to manage chunks.
At the beginning of each chapter, we get a passage from some of the propaganda the government has sent out, to brainwash the residents. I really looked forward to each of these passages. Its quite amazing to see how Lauren Oliver has taken everyday things and feelings and spun them into a reason for love to be outlawed. The sweaty palms, butterflies in the tummy, not being able to concentrate - and so many more really do sound like a plausible disease.I think the whole concept for this series is amazingly creative and well executed.
I enjoyed the way the characters developed. We gradually got to know alot of Lena's backstory, and why she behaved the way she did in the beginning. Her thoughts didnt change overnight. Infact it takes a huge twist for Lena to go against everything shes been taught, which i thought was really relatable. If she'd just chucked it all in the minute she met this boy then i would have been dissapointed.
Hana, the best friend, was an extremely likable and interesting character. I think she'd make a great protagonist for a book of her own. Alex, the love interest, didnt have quite as much depth. I definitely didnt fall in love with him the way i have with other characters. I would have liked to get to know him better. Alot of him seemed to get skipped over.
For a book centred around love, the romance was simply sweet and innocent. Completely appropriate for a YA read.
I found the overall storyline a little slow for most of the book. I would have liked a little more action in the first 60%, but once the action did start, boy did it go off with a bang.Maybe it felt like such a huge, explosive ending because of the quiet lead up, i dont know, but i wasnt putting that book down for anyone. Even when i did finish, i had so much adrenaline coursing through me that it was impossible to get to sleep.
The conclusion: Definitely worth a read for YA dystopian fans. I'll be picking up the sequel very soon!