Author: Lauren Oliver
Series: Delirium #1
Publisher: Harper Collins
Published: February 1st 2011
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.
Words cannot properly express how fantastic this book is. There'd been so many praises for Delirium and it was everything I expected! Tell me you read the summary and weren't immediately interested. Tell me you finished the first chapter of this book without wanting to shut out real life and immerse yourself in it. I loved Lauren Kate's writing style - descriptive without being overly so. Everything just flowed right. Quite surprised at how much I enjoyed it, actually. My expectations were that high - I think it was weeks before I saw a less than 5 star review for this book - leading me to believe I would end up feeling underwhelmed. That definitely was not the case here.
There was nothing predictable about this book. I found everything out along with the characters and didn't expect any of the plot lines. Since there were quite a few in there with multiple characters, all tied together, you never knew which story you were going to explore and what the outcomes would be. Delirium kept me in suspense, constantly making me wonder if our doomed couple would be able to escape Lena's cure in time. Lauren Oliver was really smart with what she told us too. I felt that many things weren't straight out disclosed, and never were, but were just inferred. We had to put the pieces together ourselves or guess, which was great because it's just an extra element of mystery!
The plot overall was intriguing and capturing. It's a scary world that they're living in and a scary thought - a world without love. A world where you didn't get to experience it and didn't want it, where it was forbidden and wrong - a disease. I cannot imagine anyone living in a place like this but luckily, this is fiction and hopefully in a thousand years we'll still have our brains and morals!
Alex is the boy Lena's so enthralled by. He's young and mysterious and every little bit we learn about him is gold. I absolutely adored him, his attitude towards life and learning about his backstory. It was really wonderful, seeing him bring Lena out of her shell. He opened up her eyes to the real world and let her start living. The way Lena and Alex met was very interesting. None of that usual "saw him in the street/ally/club/school" stuff. No, Lena goes into a government building for an important interview and sees a guy she doesn't know, lurking around on the floor above her while wild animals charge into the room. Unique, huh? I would complain and ask for more Alex/Lena scenes but…honestly, there were plenty. I'm just being greedy. Everything was actually perfectly balanced - their relationship, Lena's impending doom, complications with the government, problems with friends and family, etc. Nothing was overdone and nothing was touched on too briefly. Everything was just right.
Just randomly, there were little tidbits at the beginning of every chapter. Sometimes they were excerpts from government handbooks, sometimes they were poems, articles, etc, and I loved it. As well as providing some amusement (who didn't snort and think the government was completely and utterly insane?), we got more insight and knowledge about how tightly controlled and brainwashed the government has its people. Truly flabbergasting.
"Hana and I go down toward the labs together. Hana is almost five-nine. When I walk next to her I have to do a half skip every other step to keep up with her, and I wind up feeling like a duck bobbing up and down in the water." - Teaser (adorable, no?)The ending is unbelievable. It will leave you stunned, speechless, and unbelieving that the sequel won't arrive for another year.