Welcome to Lena Halloway’s world. Lena lives in a society that is carefully managed and monitored by the government. Long ago this society came up with a cure for deliria (love) and feels that their world is better for it. After all deliria (love) is nothing but a discussing disease that affects the brain…. it causes you to be unable to sleep, have anxiety, irrational thoughts, and do things you would normally never consider doing if not for the deliria.
Oh – I remember the first time I had deliria…I think I was 15 and the symptoms listed here are right on…. that inability to sleep, irrational thought, and I may add the need to speed dial said boys phone number at least 20 times a day and at inappropriate times at night…
And when you put it that way, Lena has to agree who would want to go through that? The society “cures” you when you turn 18 by running an operation that leaves you no longer desiring love. After the procedure is complete the government will line you up with someone who they feel will be a good match for you and you will be married and live happily ever after with your X number of children, all without the annoyance of deep emotion. Why would the government steer you wrong?
Lena has 95 days before her cure and she ready to move into her future, counting down the days. After all everything she needs to know is in the book of Shhhhh, and all the warnings she needs is in the banned book called Romeo and Juliet which is not a love story at all but an example and a warning as to what happens when you are infected with deliria.
Then one day everything changes when Lena meets a boy named Alex. Alex is mysterious and self-confident and when Lena is around him she feels her heart race and her and her skin turn hot…. surely this is the start of the fever that infects a person with deliria! As Lena spends more time with Alex, carefully dodging the ever watchful eye of her aunt and the others who have been “cured”, she starts to wonder what really is true, and what will be the ultimate cost of freedom in a society that does not believe in choices.
Laurel Oliver has done it again. Delirium is a story that I was not sure about picking up (much like her first novel Before I Fall). I didn’t know if I would like the subject matter and when i first heard about this book I felt it had a techy feel to it that I was not sure was for me. Yet I had to admit that it took me a while to pick up Before I Fall as well, and I came out of that read gushing about the inner story line and deeper meaning of the book.
While Before I Fall and Delirium are too very different novels, I felt the same about them. Yes they are YA and I can see how they would really appeal to the YA ‘s out there and that can be enough – but in each book I ended up finding something deeper within the story. In Delirium I am thrust into the knowledge that some day society may try to control that in which we now count as rights and freedom.
I enjoyed Lena for her strong will and her “succeed or die trying” attitude. Even when Lena is trying hard not to love (oh by the way – that word is a banned word!) it still shows through in her friendships and of course, eventually with Alex.
I closed this book knowing there was more to be said. And thanks to Twitter, I quickly learned that yes, Pandemonium (scheduled to be out Feb 2012) will be the title of the second book and this series will end with Requiem.
I have updated the 2011 WHERE Are You Reading Map to include Delirium
I received this book through Netgalley and I am
thrilled to say it is the first book I have read on my NOOK