Author: Lauren Oliver
Release date: February 1, 2011
How I got it: From publisher for review
Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once love -- the deliria -- blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the government demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holoway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.
But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love.So to be honest I didn't think I'd enjoy this book, but fortunately I did. I didn't think it was perfect and AMAAAZING but I found myself involved in the story anyways.
What was pretty amazing was Lauren Oliver's writing. It's been like 3 years since I've read Oliver's debut, Before I Fall, and I seem to have completely forgotten the otherworldly magic she has over words. The writing is what kept me reading even when I found the plot to be slow (which sadly I did. Several times).
As for the world-building...well, it had its moments where I bought into the fear and the cure and everything, but it also had its major "yeah suuuure" moments that so obviously were thrown in for the author's convenience it made me roll my eyes.
I also had issues investing in the characters until at least halfway through, and then my favorites were still not Lena. Actually I found Lena to be rather bland. The romance between Lena and Alex, however, I found to be more believable and less instant than I was expecting, though it still seemed a little more like lust than love.
Despite my qualms with the pacing, world-building, and characters, I still remained fascinated by the concept and writing. I can see how this book is so widely loved, even though I only liked it.
Plot: Awesome concept, but the pacing was a little off.
Characters: I would've liked some more development from each of them.
Ending: I feel kind of cheated about the ending, because I'd accidentally read a spoiler online--yes, THE spoiler, the one that spoils the BIG SHOCKER--but I liked it in a bittersweet way and I'm interested to see what it means for Lena in Pandemonium.
Kid friendly: There was some swearing, making out, and partying.
I would wave my hand in an irritated fashion if someone tried to talk to me, but I wasn't adamant about it.