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Delirium

Delirium  - Lauren Oliver Smash Attack Reads: http://smashattackreads.blogspot.com/2011/01/book-review-delirium-by-lauren-oliver.htmlMy SynopsisAmor Deliria Nervosa, aka Love. A disease that is slowly being eradicated from society. According to the government, love is at the heart of all wars, debauchery, deviance. If people cannot love, then people cannot hate, and society will be safe. Makes sense, which is why the government created a surgery to rid a person of the disease. This operation isn’t done until you reach 18. You are then given some appropriate matches and get to choose which one you want to betroth. Of course, you won’t make that connection until after you complete the college major that was chosen for you. And then you will have 2.5 children and live in a house with a white picket fence. And be content in your nothingness.Despite the government’s direct, harsh methods, there are those in which the operation never works. These people are tossed inside the Crypts to waste away their lives in heartache and feces. Good times. Lastly, you have the Invalids, or the people who live in the Wilds. The ones that have escaped to uncontrolled lands to love until their hearts explode.Meet 17 year old Lena, who is thoroughly looking forward to her operation because she wants to live a predictable life, just like everyone else…until she meets Alex and becomes infected. Lena learns the truth about her government in a very ugly fashion during a raid of an illegal party where adolescent boys and girls are mingling ( a major no no!) and unapproved entertainment is being enjoyed. This scene was brutal and Lena, who has been trying her hardest to deny thoughts of Alex, is suddenly in need of his rescue. Needless to say, Lena and Alex experience a secret, blissful romance and must make an ugly decision as to how to proceed with their lives. It is quite obvious they can’t continue on in society, and Lena’s operation date is slowly approaching…My ThoughtsI find it quite funny that they chose 18 as the operation appropriate age, as many, many teenagers fall hopelessly in love at some point in their adolescence, and teenagers are well known for their rebellious behavior. Yea, the government ensures that boys and girls do not associate with each other until after the operation, but where there is a will, there is a way!Throughout the novel, the social worker in me couldn’t help but think about attachment and bonding between mother and child. If these women feel no love or affection, why is it that they give a crap about their children? While this world has almost eradicated crime, I can’t help but think about all the sociopaths that would really be produced from such an environment!One thing I really enjoyed about this book were the various quotes and passages at the beginning of each chapter. Some were from the fictional texts of the world, some were bible quotes, etc. They all focused on what love looks like, feels like, the symptoms of love, etc. It really added to the seriousness of this dystopian world.Delirium was the 3rd book with similar plot that I had read back-to-back. I’m not sure what possessed me to do it, but I enjoy the dystopian genre so I didn’t think anything of it. I thought the book was a normal, good read about 75% of the way through. It wasn’t until a certain turn of events occurred that the book went from good to fantastic. The ending was a real bite-your-nails moment and I didn’t realize how much I actually cared for the characters, especially Alex, until the end of the book. Those emotions crept up on me, kind of like love crept up on Lena. The final moments of the book brought tears to my eyes. I look forward to the next installment in this series because I just have to know the truth about the ending! [Looks like I also need to read Before I Fall, which has received much praise.]