Tuesday, February 1, 2011

BR: Delirium

by Lauren Oliver
Delirium trilogy; book I

I was just sooo excited to see this on NetGalley. YAY!

Summary (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 Holway 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.

My Expectations: The hype? have you seen it? heard it? Expected HUGE things.

Delivery: totally great, perhaps not mind-blowing but still pretty awesome.

Put-down-ability: lowwww, 3/10. I mean I sat reading at my computer at ridiculously long intervals.

My Thoughts

I think I was lost in the fanfare of the hype, the predecessor debut and the general positive vibe surrounding Lauren Oliver’s sophomore novel, that my intentions and view of the novel might be skewed. It helps to take a step back and remember that an opinion should be your own, and not one of the many 5/5 star ratings just to fit in with the crowds.

I will admit, when I finished the novel I had the urge to run onto Goodreads and smack a five star rating on it, screaming to everybody to read this book if their life depended on it. But before I did, I thought for a bit about what I really liked about it, and this helped me develop my own personal review which I’ll share with you right now. I’ll say that the book was great. I really, really enjoyed so many aspects of it, yet it wasn’t perfect.


Starting with the positives, the writing no doubt is miles ahead of other cool stuff. Oliver’s writing is incredible, it truly is an experience. She has a way with figurative language that makes me ashamed of my lack of eloquence, the novel’s prose is simply beautiful. Seriously. The writing is amazing (and much better than I remembered compared to Before I Fall).

The world-building will be something that many people will probably comment on, and how flawless and perfect it was. However, I thought it was a bit average. Dystopian worlds are commonly praised for its originality, especially in a highly praised novel, but the premise of this one was just average with a twist. Love being a disease was undoubtedly original, but the rest of the world didn’t impress me. Perfect society and matchy-matchy? Been there, done that.

Lena's relationships with both Hannah and Alex were well developed. I especially liked witnessing the friendship between her and Hannah, I felt it was executed realistically and really captured a 'tone', considering the circumstances. I was less impressed with Lena/Alex, I had trouble finding it fresh and original. Alex’s character wasn’t fantastic, but he was interesting to read about, not many complaints there.

On the flip side, the pacing rocked; the world building never felt overwhelming-- it was just at the sweet spot. The start was attention grabbing and I liked the way thing started to build as the plot progressed. It became intense and desperate as you sped towards an ending you couldn't even begin to predict.

Lauren Oliver’s second novel does not disappoint. Delirium is dystopian. It’s adventurous. It’s dangerous, romantic and stunning. It’s one you shouldn’t miss.

Rating in HP Terms- Exceeds Expectations
Recommended for:
all YA readers, those looking for a great dystopian novel with fantastic writing.
Acknowledgements: whoopsies, forgot to read, then Galley went bye-bye :(

8.9/10 – because while there are numerous things that I loved about it, it did lose some of its shininess in other areas. I wished the plot could have been a bit more unpredictable, although the premise Oliver had created was crazy good. The ending wasn’t really my style, but overall it was a really great novel that has huge appeal. Bring on the sequel!!


  1. I'm glad you loved it so much! I didn't dare reading the entire review since I'm reading the book myself :)

  2. I really liked Delirium. Lauren Oliver writing is always so emotional. And the ending, talk about cliffhanger. I like things a little wrapped up but this one left me hanging over the cliff.

    Great review :)

  3. I really have to agree with you on this. While I enjoyed the book, I don't think that it gives me "chill" like some other dystopian books that I've read.

  4. Great review! I have really been looking forward to this one!

  5. The Ending gah!! I just sat there in total shock, glad you loved it lovey :)

  6. Thanks for sharing your (very thoughtful!) review! I especially like your rating of put-down-ability. Not gonna lie, I often use that part of your reviews to decide if I'm going to read a book or not! This one? Definitely going to read!

  7. I think this a solid, fair review - I just reviewed this yesterday, and I really enjoyed the last half of the book; the first third, not so much, so I know where you are coming from. It's an interesting mix of wonderful, lyrical writing, but with a slow beginning boil.

  8. Great review! I gotta read this soon :)

    Good to know the pacing is good :)

  9. I have already read several reviews for Delirium. Seems like everyone likes it. Even with the world building being a little lacking, this one still sounds great.

    It is already on my TBR so hopefully I get to it soon.

  10. Your review is so great!!! but, UGH. The roads are bad here and I haven't gotten a chance to go get the book yet! I know it's only the first day that it's been out, but I am so mad that I haven't read this yet.

    Solid review :) I can't wait to read this one. Thanks for sharing :)

  11. Ahhhh I want this! The hype is crazy and I haven't heard a negative review about it! I'm glad you enjoyed it despite its minor drawbacks. :)

  12. I just finished BEFORE I FALL Which I thought was amazing, she's such a great writer! I can't wait to read this and even more now I've read you review :) She seems to be really skilled at capturing friendship.

  13. I agree that the best aspect of the book was probably the prose. Lauren Oliver seems to have higher standards than a majority of YA authors.

    I'm sorry you didn't adore the end! Better luck next time, right? ;D

    Thanks for the review!


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