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Delirium Library Binding – 7 Feb 2012
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Praise for Before I Fall: "Oliver's debut novel is raw, emotional, and, at times, beautiful....readers will love Samantha best as she hurtles toward an end as brave as it is heartbreaking."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Praise for Before I Fall: "This story races forward, twisting in a new direction every few pages, its characters spinning my emotions from affection to frustration, anger to compassion. You'll have no choice but to tear through this book!"--Jay Asher, author of the New York Times bestseller Thirteen Reasons Why
"Oliver's follow-up to her smash debut, Before I Fall (2010), is another deft blend of realism and fantasy...the book never loses its A Clockwork Orange-style bite regarding safety versus choice."--Booklist
"In [Oliver's] dystopian America, love has been outlawed as the life-threatening source of all discord. Lena's gradual awakening is set against a convincing backdrop of totalitarian horror. The abrupt ending leaves enough unanswered questions to set breathless readers up for volume two of this trilogy."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Praise for Before I Fall: "Before I Fall is smart, complex, and heartbreakingly beautiful. Lauren Oliver has written an extraordinary debut novel about what it means to live--and die."--Carolyn Mackler, author of Tangled and The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things, a Printz Honor book
Praise for Before I Fall: "Oliver, in a pitch-perfect teen voice, explores the power we have to affect the people around us in this intensely believable first novel...This is a compelling book with a powerful message and should not be missed."--ALA Booklist
"Oliver's deeply emotional and incredibly well-honed prose commands the readers' attention and captures their hearts. With a pulse-pounding tempo and unforeseen twists and turns, Lauren Oliver has opened the door on a fantastic new series; the second book can't come soon enough."--New York Journal of Books
Praise for Before I Fall: "Samantha's attempts to save her life and right the wrongs she has caused are precisely what will draw readers into this complex story and keep them turning pages until Sam succeeds in living her last day the right way."--Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) (Starred Review)
"Strong characters, a vivid portrait of the lives of teens in a repressive society, and nagging questions that can be applied to our world today make this book especially compelling and discussable."--School Library Journal (starred review)
"In a thick climate of fear, Oliver spins out a suspenseful story of awakening and resistance with true love at its core."--The Horn Book
From the author of BEFORE I FALL comes the first book in the remarkable New York Times bestselling trilogy about forbidden love, revolution and the power to choose. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
I must admit that whilst reading Delirium I kept comparing it to the Divergent series, not because they are the same, but because Divergent was the first Dystopian novel I read. It's very similar in the sense that there are 'us' and 'them', 'Government ideals' and 'Rebels'. This isn't to say that it is the same in the slightest, the story is completely different.
Love being a 'disease' is such a brilliant concept to base a story on, I cannot wait to see how this idea is explored further.
The ending is a cliffhanger so make sure you have the second book on standby for once you have finished.
Oliver is a wordsmith of poetic imagery and emotion. Her carefully crafted chapters are a breeze to sweep by, but also impactful and suspenseful that it is almost unbearable to put down. Every chapter begins with a passage which is as artfully crafted as the story and the world it is set on. The characters take a life of their own. The story feels like a tragedy waiting to happen. The protagonists, the limelight of a Romeo and Juliet incarnation of loss and love of the modern times.
Lena starts off as the advocate for the cure and as eager as any teenager her age is to get treated. But for the revolution to start, it has to start inside, in the mind. For the revolution to start inside someone or something has to challenge your beliefs. That's what happens when Lena meets Alex. She starts to question the world she has been born and raised into. For the brain to awake and see clearly, something has to spring it and alarm it. Alex is the perfect vessel of change. However, he not only cultivates the revolution in Lena's spirit, but also becomes the first love, the first crush. The one who opens your eyes into a world of feelings and foreign sensations.
The prose is full of similes and metaphors, imagery and vivid pictures it reads like a poem. Written in the first person, it's self reflective, self-absorbed. The reader is let in on a seamless stream of consciousness narrative where they take the chance to really see what goes on inside the brain of this confused girl, how it thinks, associates and disassociates and the important thought processes that lead to change.
The plot is simple, but not uneventful; that's for sure. For its synopsis you would think it would be very futuristic and dystopian. On the contrary, it is as realistic as any of the classics. It is about ordinary people in extraordinary conditions. It runs smoothly moment by moment, second by second, as the change and the shift in focus take place, take shape and form. Every chapter leaves you wanting more. It's never enough. The reader is made to want, need even, another peak (because it feels voyeuristic, as if you're a pipping-Tom in someone's else life) into a moment of their time. That takes skill and lots of brains to master as a writer.
Something that made me think about the concept however, is the use of the word love. You'd think if love was outlawed the verb and noun would also be rejected and banned from use. Yet Lena loves running, loves summer. Loves things. So wouldn't loving objects be risky? If you still loved things what could stop you from loving people?
On a more personal note, I was reading some other reviews and read about the book being all anti-feminist because it needs a man, Alex, to bring about the sense of fulfilment in the female protagonist, Lena. I want to disagree to the ends of the Earth with that. Opposite-sex relations are constricted with power politics. It's inevitable. But let's not forget that love is the same no matter who you are. It just so happens that the protagonist here is a young woman who falls for a guy, who happens to awaken her senses and her awareness of the world. When you fall in love in real life, you don't care about such dynamics between the sexes. You don't think about them. This happens in academic researches. When you fall in love you are you. You're not a woman, not a man. You're yourself. I think the book would read the same if Lena was a male character or if Alex was female and the relationship was a same-sex one. We've learnt to throw feminism into every literature where there is a woman protagonist and see if it is fit for the feminist, girl-power canon. Let's just remember that sometimes you are a woman who is a female who needs saving and sometimes you're a woman who is female and saves others. Nothing is black and white. Besides no girl actually attempts to kill herself because she was damped for her "own good" (Twilight hint).
If you want something to bite down to your core and bring about thoughts and scepticism about what it means to live without love, then give this book a definite read. And then maybe you'll want to read the second in the trilogy as bad as I want to right now.