It took me a year but I finally did it. I finally finished reading the Delirium trilogy by Lauren Oliver. I’m going to be honest with you. I no longer know what to do with myself.
This will probably contain spoilers, so hold on to your hats.
Last year, around New Year, I downloaded the first book for my new kindle – Delirium written by Lauren Oliver. I’d been waiting for this moment for weeks, after I first saw Requiem, the last book in the trilogy, advertised in a magazine. I knew that this would be the first book I would download and read on my kindle. And there I was, New Years Eve 2012, probably, (hey the New Years Eve 2011 I was reading the Hunger Games trilogy don’t judge me) reading my new favourite book. I think I read it in a matter of days. I quickly moved onto the short story Hana, then onto Pandemonium and finally the short story Annabel. I had quickly ran out of Delirium trilogy to read and it hadn’t even been a week. I know. I’m a fast reader. I was itching for the final installment Requiem. Which finally just read, due to the fact it was exam season the date in came out and a lack of money and the fact I was told I may or may not get the books in physical book form for Christmas.
But why is this series so addictive? Firstly, the idea that love is a disease is extremely interesting. That original idea was the formation of wanting to read it. I have never read, or come across, any fiction which explores the idea that love is disease and it be eradicated with a cure. Secondly, the way it is written and the words used are just perfect and meaningful. So many quotations can be taken from the series that apply in that fictional world, and ours. This enables the book to stick with you, almost imprinting itself on your soul and in your mind. I have forever memorised the quotes “You can’t be happy unless you’re unhappy sometimes” and “He who leaps for the sky may fall, it’s true. But he may also fly.” Another thing that makes the trilogy so amazing is each book is written differently. The first book is continuous, in time with Lena and her life, with a few flash backs and memories of course. The second book, still from the viewpoint of Lena, but split between two different times of her life. I will admit, this is a little confusing at start, but it works so well – in my opinion the book would have dragged if told in time order like the first. The third, and final installment is presented via two narratives Hana’s and Lena’s, this gives the reader equal insight into what is happening in the Wilds and the society. This difference does risk disappointment with any of the books, but I feel the difference keeps the books fresh and original.
The protagonist Lena, well I couldn’t help but connect with her good-two shoes nature in the first book, as someone who’s terrified to hand in their homework late I obviously felt some serious connection. Although being afraid to fall in love in a society where falling in love is probably more serious than murder our circumstances are very very different. This connection allows the reader to fall in love with Alex, and mourn Alex with Lena in the second book. Reading Pandemonium for the second time, I actually began to love Julian also, instead of mentally screaming “No, not him, remember Alex, Lena, remember Alex!” like I did first time reading. Of course then Alex returns and feelings of confusion are felt and you don’t know what’s really happened until Requiem.
The secondary characters within the trilogy are easy to love, or hate depending who they are (Fred, I’m looking at you). Raven, is probably the most profound character, in fact she may be my favourite. When did she become my favourite character though? When Blue died. Up until that point I think I just assumed Raven had been in The Wilds (outside of the delirium free society) all her life. And then I couldn’t just feel like my heart had been ripped out near the end of Requiem (you’re just going to have to read it).
Now here’s time for a fun fact: I’ve been writing this post for at least two weeks. Why? I love this series too much, anything that I write seems wrong. I think I may be a perfectionist. I can’t even put into words how much I love this series and if you see this book anywhere pick it up, look and the blurb and the maybe, hopefully, you will read it. Or at least contemplate reading it.
Until the next post