Cels Reviews: Lauren Oliver—"Delirium"

Imagine a world of strict borders, raids by regulators, strictly imposed curfews, and evaluations, in which a good marriage match is based on your ‘score’, and a huge gap exists between rich and poor. Now, imagine all that with no love. No romance novels or love songs, no touching, and segregation of the uncured sexes; and, if you dare catch the Deliria, you might just find yourself looked in an institution for the rest of your life.

Welcome to Lena’s world. It’s been 43 years since scientists perfected a cure for love—(Amor Deliria Nervosa)—the deadliest disease of them all. Lena is counting down the days to her 18th, when she can at last have the procedure and be safe from pain. But, with only 95 days left to go, Lena does the unthinkable…

“There was a time when love was the most important thing in the world. People would go to the end of the earth to find it. They would tell lies for it. Even kill for it. Then, at last, they found a cure”.

Delirium is the second novel from Oliver, and this, along with debut offering, Before I Fall, has already been optioned for film rights. Lena’s story is poignant and the characters’ inner turmoil and struggle against what they have always believed to be the truth is handled with such delicacy and respect it has a resoundingly truthful ring. Delirium will make you think and be frightened of the absolute power that governing bodies can hold over their citizens. I found myself constantly looking at my dearest and wanting to cry.

Just the thought of no love or the absence of any feelings whatsoever between partners, parents, children, friends, and family leaves a chilling aftershock. Delirium will trap you in the story as you root for Lena to escape and find a path of love and, undoubtedly, pain; but at least she will feel unlike so many around her. The plot does feel a little sluggish in the beginning, and the information a tad overloaded, but it is well worth hanging in there. The story that unfolds will resound in your heart and linger with you afterwards.

“Delirium”—Lauren Oliver

February 1, 2011, by Hodder UK

Paperback, 448 Pages

ISBN: 978-0-340-98092-7

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