Delirium by Lauren Oliver
Due out: 2/1/2011
Published by: Harper Collins
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.
Envision a world where “love” is not in your vocabulary. Where you want for nothing because you are happiest just existing, going through the motions day-to-day. This is the world the Lauren gives you in Delirium. The government has decided that love is a disease…and like most horrible diseases, they have found a cure. Everyone will get the cure for amor deliria nervosa at age 18, all decisions about your life will be made for you. You take tests to decide if you qualify for college, they match you with a husband or wife, they decide the number of children you will have. You don’t care, you’re happy to let them make your decisions for you. That’s what the “cure” does. Turns you into a mindless zombie that just goes with the flow. You don’t comfort your children when they cry, you don’t cuddle them when they are sick. You simply are there to make sure they grow. No hugs, no tears….no love. Segragation between sexes is a must, nightly raids on neighborhoods to find illegal activity is common…all in the name of Big Brother.
Lena is your common everyday teenager of the ages. She is 17, looking forward to her upcoming procedure to rid herself of these confusing emotions that sometimes swirl through her thoughts. She craves the simplicity of going to school, passing her required tests and moving forward. When her friend Hana shows signs of rebellion she is appalled. Going to illegal parties with boys? Letting a boy touch you? Lena can’t bare to think of it.
Then on a chance meeting she runs into a cured boy named Alex, or who she thinks is cured because he bares the “mark”. Lena starts having thoughts and feelings she wished would leave her alone..but they persist. Alex isn’t what he seems to be. He is flying under the radar, hiding among the masses. There are more people hiding in “The Wilds” beyond the fences around every city.
Lena’s world starts to quickly unravel. People are not what they seem. The government isn’t what it seems. The walls around the city suddenly look like they are keeping people in, not keeping the resisters out. The cure isn’t the answer. But Lena’s time is running out. Her procedure date is approaching. Will the disease of love help or hurt her? Alex is the key.
This book had me in a mess. I was horrified by the government procedures and the cure. The idea that no one could feel love simply astounded me. In reality if you can’t feel love, you don’t have hobbies, you don’t crave anything. No music, no movies…all they do is center around emotion. But you don’t care…you live in a perpetual state of being okay without whatever you are given. Only the rich drive cars…electricity is rationed to everyone except the rich and government buildings. You walk. Which is why they make everyone live within the city limits. You don’t BLINK unless you’re told it’s okay.
When Lena meets Alex her story gets complicated. Lies, hiding, finding out the truth of the society in which you live in. Learning to trust yourself after years of being told your destiny, years of being spoonfed lies from those you trust the most. When that trust cracks and you are left with the blinding truth…what do you do?
The love she feels is sparkly and new all glittering and full of possibility. She can’t comprehend the depth of what she is feeling, coupled with the fact that she has been told it’s wrong, it’s horrible, to stay away at all costs. The world is swiftly changing around Lena and she is grappling to hold onto something. That something turns out to be Alex.
When a book makes you think, makes you question..its the mark of excellence. This book was amazing from cover to cover. Sitting in my car a couple of songs came on that really made me stop and think again. Grasp the complexity of this “disease” we all have, the ability to love. These songs seem to fit the book quite well. And they carried on with me through my day.
Snow Patrol – Run – I am putting a blank type video up because I don’t want you to watch the video, I want you to feel the music. To listen to the message. To understand the importance of our emotions, our feelings…and know that no one can take that from us.
And Nickelback – Far Away-
Delirium will make you question everything…your emotions, your thoughts, your government and most of all YOURSELF. It is a powerful novel that will open your eyes to the extent those in power might go to keep their control over us. And what happens when one teenage girl dares to love.
I give Delirium 4.5 stars!