Challenge 44 ~ “A book set in the future.”
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Nothing boded particularly well for this book when I first made the move to read it – there was (or had been when it first came out) large speculation about the book, it was eerily similar to something else I’d read (Matched by Ally Condie) and seemed to have a great focus on love (romance novels have never been my thing.) Nevertheless, I read it, because a) it has been a popular read in the young adult community, and I’ve heard good things, and b) it’s Lauren Oliver.
“Delirium is engaging, twisty and a little predictable, but 100% enjoyable.” Having finished, I can find no better way to describe the novel than my thoughts mid-way – it truly is each and every one of those things, and more. Don’t get me wrong, when I first began the novel I was very tentative about its similarity to Matched and its focus on love as a prominent theme, but I was soon sucked in. And once you’re drawn into Oliver’s mad, crazy and thrill-inducing worlds, there’s certainly no escape (at least, not one I know about!) As with all of Oliver’s work, the language is fantastic, blending with an enticing plot and realistic characters, to create a phenomenal adventure of a read.
Two months later, and I am still getting my head around the ending. It came out of nowhere (but not in a not-sure-where-I-dragged-this-from-but-I’ll-make-it-fit way), and blew the reader out the water in a dramatic move that has them hunting down the next in the series. Whilst I had a blast reading Matched, I care a lot more about Alex than I do about Ky or Xander, and here I am saying romance isn’t my thing!
For me, however, there was something that surpassed even the ending in my enjoyment, and that was the prefaces to each chapter. It was something I had never seen before in a novel, and it was fantastic way to flavour the novel whilst reinforcing the societal conditions in which the story was set. For those less familiar with The Bible, I can see how some of the references may have seemed a little strange, but they were by far my favourite. It’s a feature I definitely want to see it the sequels!
As of now I am already hunting down the sequels like a vampire thirsting for blood, and shifting my 2016 plan to accommodate the rest of the trilogy. There is nothing I can really say to convey with justice the merits of Delirium – its unique, well-written and cultivates such a connection with the reader, even when romance or futuristic novels aren’t their thing. And if that isn’t a talent or a sign of a well-written novel, I don’t know what is!
Recommended for fans of:
- Life As We Knew It by Susan Pfeffer
- Matched by Ally Condie
- Shelter by Harlan Coban