I ran out the second I heard that Delirium was released. A huge fan of Before I Fall, I could not wait to read Lauren Oliver’s newest novel. I was instantly hooked by the concept and tore through the book the second it was in my hands. Truly, it did not disappoint. The only disappointment I felt is that I never wanted it to end.
Imagine a world without love. A world without hugs, kisses, smiling couples, or awkward first dates. These imaginings are a reality for the people of America in a not-so-distant future. The government diagnoses love, and all the trauma it causes, as a disease that must be cured. Lena knows all too well what this disease can do. She saw it eat away at her mother’s soul like a parasite. She saw firsthand that love doesn’t just hurt…it kills.
Lena can’t wait to be cured, to be forever saved from the same fate her mother suffered. Yet, one chance meeting changes everything. A mysterious boy enters her life, promising to teach her how to live, maybe even to love. As Lena’s carefully constructed life starts making a downward spiral into oblivion, she must decide between the life she has always wanted and the life she never knew existed.
Lauren Oliver is an absolute genius. My copy of Delirium is dog-eared all over the place to mark particularly beautiful parts in her prose. I was halfway through when I realized that I had dog-eared practically every page. Her style is so exquisitely heart wrenching and powerful that no number of adjectives can portray the beauty of her words.
The characters are impeccably crafted. Their dialogue is so natural that I felt like I was being sucked into their conversations. Lena is one of my favorite heroines in modern young adult literature. She is not a born hero or a true fighter. She is vulnerable, and that is one of her most powerful traits. She embodies the moments of doubt, wonder, and fear that everyone experiences at some point. Yet, as she looks deeply into herself, she realizes that she isn’t strange or weak. Lena finds that power within herself and her journey inspires readers.
Although Delirium by Lauren Oliver takes place in a distant time, is the idea so far reaching? Are people really willing to give up love to end war, hatred, and violence? Is it worth it? Maybe yes, maybe no. The answer is different for every person. Delirium begs the question: Why do you have to choose? Why can’t peace and love coexist in the same world? It is a question that will stay with the reader long after the final page of this glorious novel. No matter what consequences befall me for admitting this, I absolutely, positively, without a shadow of a doubt, love this book to madness. And delirium has never felt this good.
Victoria Testa lives in New York City but is a beach bum at heart. When not writing or reading, she can be found surfing, swimming, and singing!