Monday, June 20, 2011

Book Review #76: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

by Lauren Oliver

Genre: YA Dystopian / Science Fiction / Romance
Ages: 14 and up

Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once 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 Holoway 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.

First Lines:
Ninety-five days, and then I'll be safe. I wonder whether the procedure will hurt. I want to get it over with. It's hard to be patient. It's hard not to be afraid while I'm still uncured, though so far the deliria hasn't touched me yet. Still, I worry. They say that in the old days, love drove people to madness. The deadliest of all deadly things: It kills you both when you have it and when you don't.

My Review:
This book was amazing. It was so beautiful and sad and different and...perfect. The idea of love as a disease infected me immediately. The world Lauren Oliver created is so like our own and yet frighteningly different. People go through their daily lives, talking and working and eating as if everything is normal, but they never laugh. They never dance. They never say "I love you." They claim to be happy but there is no joy. Love was declared a disease because love causes hate and hate causes wars, but if have lost the ability to love or hate, what is left?

I love Lena. She is shy, scared and very ordinary. She isn't a rebel, she doesn't want to break the rules, all she wants is to be happy and safe. There are so many rebellious, strong heroines out there that it was refreshing to meet one who is so very human. I can relate to her insecurities and anxieties so easily because I share many of them. I love that Lena is stronger than she thinks she is, strong enough to stand up for love when the world wants to take it from her, even when she has feared it all her life.

Alex is wonderful, but you don't get to know him as well as you do Lena. You see his bravery and sweetness through her eyes, as well as his uncommon understanding and support. And at the end...*sigh* Perfect. Absolutely perfect.

There were a few flaws in the story, but nothing that diminished my enjoyment. The fact that most of the secondary characters were nearly-emotionless adults was a little weird, but there were a few moments when I wondered if the "cure" was working quite as well as people believed. The romance was technically not very original, but the setting was totally new. Lauren Oliver's writing style was lovely. How long do I have to wait for Pandemonium???

I highly recommend Delirium to anyone who loves a tale of love and sacrifice.


This is the first book in years to make me cry. I hate tragedies and I hate cliffhangers, but the ending, though both of these things, was so beautiful. I read the last three pages five times to convince myself that a certain character may conceivably still be alive and then I had to get on the internet and reassure myself that there was going to be a sequel before I could finally relax. Even then, I was moping for a long time; practically wallowing in it. And yet, it was a marvelous kind of moping.

Content Ratings: Profanity, Sexuality and Violence
1 (mild) through 10 (extreme).

I give this book an 8.10 for a few f-words.

I rate this a 2.10 for some partial nudity, kissing, and innocent cuddling.

I rate this a 6.10 for death, suicides, fights, and injuries.

                                     Lieder Madchen

1 comment:

  1. So glad to see you enjoyed this one. :) I have it on my want list, but it does sound good. :) Thank you for the great review!