In Delirium we are introduced to Lena who is counting down the days until her eighteenth birthday. Because shortly thereafter, she will be cured. Of deliria nervosa…love. Citizens of the United States go through the procedure after their eighteenth birthday, and they also go through the process of being matched and having their futures decided for them. After all, those in the labs and the government know best… don’t they? There are a lot of restrictions that are placed on their lives in this young adult dystopia, parties are not allowed, there are only approved books that they can read, and music they can listen to. Boys and girls pre-cure are segregated, to keep them from becoming infected. There are strict curfews for those who have not been cured yet.
I honestly struggled with the first seventy-five pages of the book. It felt like I would never get past that point in the book. The best part about the early section of Delirium was being introduced to Hannah, Lena’s best friend, who also happens to be one of my favorite characters. I found that there were a handful of characters that I really enjoyed, and others who I really disliked. I know that so much of my dislike of certain characters had to do with them being Cured, but I really struggled with trying to like them, trying to find good in them. They reminded me of zombies going through their own little world. Going through the steps just because that is what they are “supposed” to do. Not feeling any sort of real human emotion- not love, not hate, not frustration, not admiration, not fear or disgust… The world building was not perfect, but it made me think.
Even though Hannah and Lena’s friendship isn’t one that is perfect (what friendship is?), I really loved their dynamic. I think in each other they saw so much of what they want to be. In certain aspects they are so completely different from each other, and yet on a lot of levels they are very similar. I felt like their friendship is a much more true reflection of what a friendship is, rather than what is often displayed in many young adult titles.
And then there is Alex, who throws a little wrench into Lena’s excitement for the procedure. She meets Alex, and then she falls in love. The one thing that was not supposed to happen, especially so close to the procedure. Will Lena be able to hide that she’s infected? Will she be Cured?
My Rating: 3.5