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Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Published by HarperTeen (An Imprint of HarperCollins)

Pages: 448

Ages: Young Adult

Publishers Summary: 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.

No love. None. It all happens with a simple procedure and then you’re suddenly “cured.” No longer do you have to worry about the possibilities of death from deliria, a disease that strikes the heart and spreads like the rippling of water across a lake, but instead through your body. It’s everything Lena can do to wait the remaining 95 days and counting before she can have her procedure completed and the worry removed forever. To live in a perfect society with no pain, no loss and most of all no fear. But at what cost? Is happiness only achieved when those things are removed and will Lena truly be happy in the end or will something…someone change her mind?

Lauren Oliver’s follow up novel to Before I Fall is making a smashing debut. Delirium, the first in a planned trilogy is set in the future, in a population that exists without pain or worry. Unfortunately for the inhabitants of this new society their procedure can only be properly administered after or very near to their 18th birthday, which of course leaves room for error. With every possible precaution in place – separate gender specific schools, curfews, chaperons, and more the government does their best to safe guard it’s citizens. Not all make it to their 18th birthday though. In Lena’s case the worst possible thing happens, she falls in love or as it’s commonly called, she contracts “Deliria.”

So, first off, I loved the premise for this book. I’m a huge fan of dystopian novels and have been for some time. The idea of making something so incredibly basic, something each of us strives for, lives for even and turning it back around on us is quite brilliant. The quote from Nature Boy sung by Nat King Cole comes to mind,

“The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.

It’s true. And so, to go so completely against that would sound incredibly absurd, but Oliver pulls it off. To the point that while reading this I was quite depressed thinking about the possibilities of this. Think of how it would be, a world without love, would you want to live there? I wouldn’t. Yes, love has it’s problems, but it’s what makes us who we are. Which is what you get to watch Lena come to the realization of throughout the progression of the book.

Lena’s transformation from someone who so adamantly opposes the idea of ever loving someone to someone who is head over heals in love, questioning everything she’s been taught, is what makes the book interesting. Unfortunately for me, it also made it incredibly dull after awhile. After about 200 or so pages of her inner-monologue about whether or not she was doing the right thing, I started to go bonkers! I was thinking, “can we just get this over already?” I loved how she changed, I loved that she matured through her experiences, but I just wish it would have been a bit more fast paced.

Delirium and it’s subsequent sequels are sure to be successful. Though I had my problems with the middle section of the book I’m still quite eager to keep reading and discover what exactly happens to her and her incredibly charming beau. Is her love doomed? Will she uncover more secrets? Who will she discover along the rest of this journey? These are some of the many questions I have for the rest of the books. I’m hoping that with the ending of Delirium leaving with such a bang that the forward motion will continue, setting a quicker pace for the remaining two books. Definitely a new YA series to be on the lookout for as well as an author I’m positive will continue to do great things!

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 14 and up. A fantastic start to an incredibly unique dystopian trilogy that teens are sure to love!

Winners of my Delirium Giveaway…

#38 Carol M
#42 Marcie from To Read or Not to Read

Congrats gals! You should be hearing from me today!

Review copy provided by the publisher, HarperTeen via NetGalley. Thank you!
Purchasing products by clicking through the links in this post will provide us a modest commission through our affiliate relationship with IndieBound.

17 Responses to Book Review: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

  1. Your review is so honest and very good! I’m in love with DELIRIUM so I think Lauren just set the right pace for Lena’s change. If she decided to be a fan of love after the first fifty pages or so, this novel + the character of Lena would be less believable. I totally agree on the end of Delirium, it left me crying, such a rapid change and absolute decision!

  2. Jessi E. says:

    Thanks for the honest review! I am looking forward to reading this soon to decide for myself! 🙂

  3. NotNessie says:

    Great review! Books that drag through the middle tend to really bug me, but I might need to read this one anyway.

  4. Wow. I need to read this apparently. Everyone is raving! Great review 🙂

    I don’t think I’d want to live in that world either!

  5. Shelly Burns says:

    I’ve been wanting to read this one; thanks for the great review! I’ve read a lot of dystopian novels lately…it seems to be the genre of choice in YA, and it’s definitely growing on me!

  6. Marcie says:

    Thank you! I’m so excited to read this book. I’ve heard great things. I’m glad you liked it too!

  7. I felt similarly to you re: pacing, though I did like the book. 😉

  8. A terrific review. I was not offset with the pacing, but I do understand how you might have been. There is a part where the middle slowed down. I am excited to read more and am now a huge fan of Oliver’s writing abilities.

  9. I really want to read this one and can not believe I am still talking about reading it and not doing it!

  10. I loved this book! You can see my review. I was so bummed to see so many people disapointed in this one. I also really enjoyed her first book, Before I Fall. Her writing is just amazing.

  11. […] But it isn’t just romantic love that is so well explored here. Lena has a very close relationship with her best friend Hana that is heart-breakingly real, and we also see snippets of the happy familial love she shared with her mother. – Presenting Lenore Lena’s transformation from someone who so adamantly opposes the idea of ever loving someone to someone who is head over heals in love, questioning everything she’s been taught, is what makes the book interesting.  Unfortunately for me, it also made it incredibly dull after awhile. After about 200 or so pages of her inner-monologue about whether or not she was doing the right thing, I started to go bonkers! I was thinking, “can we just get this over already?” – There’s A Book […]

  12. ilovedthisbook says:

    I read delirium recently, a couple days ago. & i thought it was the best book in the entire world. honestly, the book is a love story, but at the same time its a compelling novel that offers joy and comfort to the reader. this book will keep you turning page after page. Lena is a character that i can highly relate to because of the strugles, and changes she has been through. when you read this book you feel hope, and mystery as the character, and find a new passage way to every closed door. this book kept me turning pages and i hope it does the same for you. i would recommend this book for teenagers, young adults, and adult in general because anyone can openly relate to this incredible novel, i fell in love with this book and i hope you do too.

  13. I totally agree with you… this book was definitely too slow for me. I did not feel that pull to keep reading and turning pages! 🙂
    – Alyssa of Redhead Heroines
    Book Review of “Delirium” by Lauren Oliver

  14. Fargo Wells says:

    DELIRIUM 2!!! DELIRIUM 2!!! DELIRIUM 2!!!

  15. Rose says:

    This was a brilliant review! I’m dying to read Delirium once I finsh with my Netgalley books and you’ve encouraged me with the review. I’d say I’ll be OK with all the introspection, as long as something comes out of it at the end. And ooh, a cliffhanger?

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