Monday, March 7, 2011

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Release Date – February 1, 2011
Publisher – HarperTeen
Pages - 441
My Rating- 9/10
The synopsis from 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 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.
I want to start with a minor issue I had before I begin to gush. If there was one thing I would have liked to have read in the book it would be an explanation on how the society got to the point where people were willing to get the procedure. How did this even come into being? I hope we get some of those details in the two books. I just can’t wrap my head around how people would have accepted it. It didn’t distract from my enjoyment of the novel, just something I kept thinking about. I am anxiously awaiting the next book, especially after that AMAZING ending.

Ok, now on to the gushing. I thought this premise was intriguing and I was excited to read it. I wasn’t prepared for the impact this novel would have on me however.

During the process of Lena discovering love I was reminded of what it felt like to be in those early stages of infatuation. The beginning of a relationship where everything reminds you of the other person, you’re always thinking of them, and you’re giddy all the time. We’re all lucky it eventually balances out and we can begin to think straight but new love is intoxicating. It’s the rush of hormones and chemicals that makes it a pretty unique high. I couldn’t help but be reminded of how awesome this feeling is.

It’s not just the romantic type of love that is addressed in the novel. Lena and her best friend Hana made me want to talk to my own best friend right away. The bond between them is sweet and real. I really enjoyed Lena’s interactions with Grace as well (without giving anything away, Grace is kind of my hero).

Once I had finished the novel I was overcome with the feeling of being grateful. Grateful that I am able to feel and experience love; whether it’s the romantic love, the love for my family and friends, or simply the love of a relaxing rainy day with a good book and a glass of wine. The fact that we can experience any of these emotions is what it means to be truly alive. The alternative of being numb and just going through the motions is a scary thought. It’s this that makes the book so haunting. Even the opposite emotions (like sadness) are important to feel. I think that the highs would not be as great without the lows.

To quote the author who put is so eloquently in her dedication -

“For all the people who have infected me with amor deliria nervosa in the past – you know who you are. For the people who will infect me in the future – I can’t wait to see who you’ll be. And in both cases: Thank you”
I could not agree more.


  1. OMG how did I miss this?!

    I understand why you are proud of this review! You should be. It's your best one yet.

    You are SPOT ON about the how a new love makes one feel. I don't think I have read anything more accurate.

    Sadly enough, there are people that subtly and blatantly would prefer to be "numb" and hide away from love due to the fear of heartbreak. But heartbreak exists. Most of us have been through it, to various degrees unfortunately. How will we know true joy if we cannot accept the sadness that goes hand-in-hand with it? I found myself trying to avoid pain at times and have looked back with regret. My mom mentioned to me once "If you're not hurting, you're not living". She didn't mean we must suffer all the time. On the contrary. It means that hurt is an integral part of life as is joy, and we must accept that. I hope I eventually do.

    I loved how you expressed YOUR views on love and how the book made you feel on those points. Your grateful attitude about friends, family, and your relaxing rituals are something a lot of us forget to acknowlege. I think being grateful for these things is the key to life.

    I looove your passion for this book. Keep this up! I don't need to say that because I know you will. Thanks for alerting me to this review. I'm glad I read it.

    Love you!

  2. This book is great. They have found the cure for virus love. Everyone is required to be treated at 18. But not everyone thinks they should have the treatment. This first book in a trilogy sets up a world where scientists can remove the disease love, because love is an evil that must be eliminated. But not everyone thinks they should have the treatment. But it is more than love that is removed, it is emotion, pain, feeling. But is this the perfect world once the disease has been removed.


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