January 10, 2011
Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Published by HarperTeen February 1st 2011
Reviewed using NetGalley
Summary from Goodreads
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.
I read this nearly a week ago (maybe two) and I've been putting off the review because I'm worried that I won't do the book justice. To say it was incredible-just isn't enough. To give it a rating just doesn't seem right either. It's challenging to describe "art" and the way you feel about it to someone else. And I truly feel that Lauren Oliver has created something amazing in this book.
I connected with Lena right from the beginning. So much so, that I reacted in a way that surprised me. I really wanted Lena to be "Cured" I didn't want her to like Alex. I didn't want her to go against the rules. I wanted her safe. When she went in for evaluation and Alex was there I was saying things like "don't pay attention to him" "just do what you are supposed to" I spent a large amount of the book angry with Alex for interfering. In all the books I've read before, that has never happened. I still can't explain that "protective" feeling. I've had my share of pain and heart ache but I wouldn't change the fact that I can love and be loved, of course I would want everyone to have that. In the end, (through the tears) I was cheering Lena on-I wanted happiness for her.
The writing was beautiful, powerful and poetic. Each chapter began with quotes from books in Lenas world which explained why love is a disease and must be cured. The ending was heartwrenching and I don't know how I will wait for the next.
One of the more startling aspects of the book was the fact that it was so believable and I worry that in our "pills & procedures can fix anything society" that someday this could be a road people travel down. I wish that I had read this in a book-club enivronment - there are many parts I'd like to share and talk about with others.
When I've read a book like this, one that impacts me the way this one did I'm often left with feelings of awe and gratitiude for the writer. So thank you Lauren Oliver for writing Delirium. We, the readers are so lucky that you have. You've given us an incredible gift.