Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Review: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Title: Delirium
Series: Delirium #1
Author: Lauren Oliver
Format: Paperback, 393 pages
Pub. Date: 2011
Source: HPB

Book Description:

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 government 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.



I didn't really know what to expect going into this book. I was sort of intimidated by it. I remember when the series first came out, and everyone was obsessed. Almost every blog that I followed was reading it and talking about it. I'm always a bit hesitant when there's a fuss- I have a tendency not to enjoy them the way I wish I did!

But, I get it guys. I absolutely loved (oh no. I must be diseased) this book.

The world building is fascinating and well written. It created a very vivid landscape, one that is simultaneously beautiful and peaceful, but looming and violent. You have the guards enforcing rules, well armed and lurking coupled with the electric fence around the city and the mandated cure for the disease of "love" which set up quite the scary dystopia. It gives a disturbing insight into what life would be like without love and passion. It's chilling. But there's also the forests, the night skies, the beach, and the (albeit chilling) peace that ensues when everyone is a suburban loveless zombie.

I really enjoyed the characters. Mostly. I didn't so much care for the lead, Lena, so much. It's not personal. I am just really, really tired of the "ho hum I'm a boring brunette who is average looking and woe is me" mentality. I understand why it's done, and why it's done so much. But at the same time, no thanks. Her love (gasp) interest is captivating, and I understand her attraction to him.

The disease aspect is the most fascinating to me. What I didn't take into account is how big of an umbrella term "love" is. I originally was thinking "so you don't love your partner, meh". Not that that's not terrible, but is small potatoes. You wouldn't love anything. Not your favorite food, or music, or painting or sports or reddit or whatever other past times and hobbies you have. And that would be an awful life.

I was admittedly blindsided by the ending (I probably shouldn't have been but). This book definitely ends in a cliffhanger, which I'm also not entirely fond of.

Nonetheless, I have the other two books and I'll surely finish the series. This was a strong start, and quickly became one of my favorites. It's a good read for fans of YA dystopia and romance (and maybe a forthcoming triangle, can't tell yet).


  1. This is a brilliant review, if the excerpt didn't make me want to read this book enough, the review really drove it home. I'd definitely go out and get the series in one stop at the book shop.