Delirium by Lauren Oliver
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 governments 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.
Lena has been told all her life how the disease of deliria nervosa (aka love) is dangerous. It is the disease that caused her mother to take her own life. Lena has been counting down until she is old enough to take the procedure to be cured because she doesn't want to end up like her mother - she wants to be happy.
That changes when she meets Alex. Alex is wild and different and through the words he says he makes her feel beautiful. When Lena feels herself becoming infected, she starts to wonder whether the disease is really as dangerous as the government makes it out to be. As her procedure draws near, Lena has to make the choice of whether she wants to live this "happy and pain-free" life that will happen after she's cured, or find a way to escape and be with Alex without getting caught.
Lauren Oliver has created a world that is believable and slightly unsettling. It's hard to imagine a world that has banned "love", but through Lena's eyes the world becomes horrifyingly real. Lena is the perfect character to tell the story. She has been harmed by the disease with her mother's suicide, and she can't wait to become cured so she doesn't have to worry about becoming infected. As Alex shows her that love isn't as dangerous as everyone thinks it is, Lena grew exponentially as she started to question the world she has grown up in.
The story and pace had me hooked from page one as Oliver created this original "Romeo & Juliet" style story. It contains plenty of ups and downs that kept me turning the page. I can't wait until the next one gets released so I can find out more of Lena's story.
Recommend: Uglies (Uglies Trilogy, Book 1)
2011 YA Reading Challenge: #10 of 50
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