Pandemonium

Pandemonium

by Lauren Oliver

SYNOPSIS:

Book 2 in Delirium Series:
Lauren Oliver captivated readers with DELIRIUM, the first book in a thrilling dystopian trilogy in which Lena Haloway dared to fall in love with Alex and escape the cure, the government-mandated procedure that renders a person immune to the disease of love. Lena and Alex staked their lives on leaving their oppressive society, but only Lena broke free.
PANDEMONIUM continues Lena’s gripping story. After escaping from Portland, Maine, Lena makes it to the Wilds and becomes part of an Invalid community, where she transforms herself into a warrior for the resistance. A future without Alex is unimaginable, but Lena pushes forward and fights, both for him and for a world in which love is no longer considered a disease. Swept up in a volatile mix of revolutionaries and counterinsurgents, Lena struggles to survive—and wonders if she may be falling in love again.
Full of danger, forbidden romance, and exquisite writing, Lauren Oliver’s sequel to Delirium races forward at a breathtaking pace and is sure to appeal to fans who crave the high-stakes action of THE HUNGER GAMES and the bittersweet love story of ROMEO AND JULIET.

“I’m pushing aside the memory of my nightmare,
pushing aside thoughts of Alex,
pushing aside thoughts of Hana and my old school,
push,
push,
push,
like Raven taught me to do.
The old life is dead.
But the old Lena is dead too.
I buried her.
I left her beyond a fence,
behind a wall of smoke and flame.”

Lauren Oliver delivers an electrifying follow-up to her acclaimed New York Times bestseller, Delirium. This riveting, brilliant novel crackles with the fire of fierce defiance, forbidden romance, and the sparks of a revolution about to ignite.

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Book #2 in Series

What a wonderful surprise!
You know, there is nothing better in this world than being wrong when something good is about to happen.

Usually I keep things simple when it comes to reading:
I like the first book in the series, then I continue reading the rest of them; I don’t like the first book, then I stop.
This was not the case…

This book called me – It’s not that I loved the cover (which is beautiful, but I still don’t think that it fits the story), it’s not that the description was mind-blowing (in fact it’s a bit misleading, talking about Lena fighting and being a warrior, which is not really the case here – I wonder if the person that wrote the synopsis knew what this story was about)…
I just took a look at it one day and it looked at me right back and it told me: pick me up!
And I did.. I don’t know why, because I was so sure that I wouldn’t like it.

I was suppose to tell you that it is not much better than the first one, I was suppose to tell you that I still don’t like Lena, I was suppose to tell you that this story has let me down once again, I was suppose to ask you not to read my review because I was supposed to complain endlessly.
Again, this is not the case…

If you are smart, you care. And if you care, you love

I’ll start with what didn’t make me love this book:

lena-pandemoniumWell, at the beginning I didn’t like Lena.
You know how I didn’t buy her love for Alex? Well, she failed this time to make me believe that she even cared about his death. She cried like once (maybe twice), and she thought about him from time to time (when she needed it to make her stronger), and there were some wonderful words here and there about broken hearts and suffering, but that was kind of it. It’s true, she had other things to think about, but hello! a little bit of heartbreak wouldn’t have kill her.
I have no idea (!) why did some people cry reading this book – I was only sorry for Alex because of my own ‘feelings’ for him (in a ‘I cared about this poor guy in the first book’ kind of way and I knew he deserved better).
I mean, I was like – you idiot, this guy probably went thorough hell because of you, he might be dead! You should cry your heart out, you should feel like dying too, you should make me want to rip my heart out – wanting for him to be alive, to see him one more time (*rolling eyes* I know, I know, I am being overly dramatic right now, but you get the point. I wanted to feel her pain and it didn’t deliver)
Also there is this tiny thing – at the beginning, even in the ‘NOW’ chapters, I thought she was weak. She was supposed to be this new Lena, stronger and smarter and wanting revenge, but she was still a bit insecure… But that was just in the beginning.

Now, the things that I liked about this book:

The second half of the story had a totally different feeling.
Lena started to grow some (back)bones, she started to make me believe that she has changed, that she was a fighter after all, that she had feelings but also some brains.
She met Julian and even though they were practically enemies, they had to work together; they had to survive and help each other in order to stay alive.
And this is the beginning of a great adventure.

I loved the action in this book. I suffered enormously in the first book because I felt there was no action, but here there was plenty and I loved every scene. As I think I’ve told you, the first half was a bit slow, but after that I almost couldn’t keep up with all that happened (both in the past and the present). I couldn’t get over a shocking scene in one dimension because I got another strike in the other one).

“That’s the thing about the cure, isn’t it? It isn’t just about deliria at all. It’s about order. A path for everyone. You just have to follow it and everything will be ok.”

There was fighting, there was running, there was planning how to survive. . And also there was some drama. Not only related to her loss (Alex and her past life), but there are other characters that we meet, some with a tragic destiny, and you can feel the pain they go through, you want them safe, you grieve for their death.. you really get to care.

And there was Julian.
He is the reason I loved this story, because he made Lena a better person.
He is the enemy, he is the symbol of this twisted system, he is a puppet on the outside, but in the inside.. that’s a whole different story.

NOTE: I’ll keep the next part as a spoiler not wanting to ruin somehow your reading experience.
So please stay away from it for now.

(view spoiler)

And now the best.. there’s the ending.
No, I am not discussing it, but I loved it.
There are 4 words (should I say 3 and a half? LOL) that still make my heart ache, because there is so much truth in them.
Oh my, oh my, oh my.. what a cliffhanger!

CONCLUSION:
Was I surprised to love this story?
Hell yeah! I am so glad that I did enjoy it and I don’t know how will I be able to wait until the next book comes out. I want to read it NOW!

I hope you will enjoy this story too, and if not, don’t worry – I’ve been there already, it doesn’t hurt that much, you’ll survive 😛

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LEAVE A COMMENT

  • Kim

    Oh wow, your review has made me even more excited to read this now! Seriously, your enthusiasm about this book being better than the first is contagious 🙂 I can’t wait to get my hands on this since I wasn’t overly enthralled by Delirium like everyone else. Amazing review!

    • Ari

      Thanks, Kim, I really hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did. In the beginning I thought it would be slightly better than the frist one, but then the second half of it really grabbed me and I ended up loving it 🙂

  • Heidi @ Rainy Day Ramblings

    Ahh Ari, I so want to read this one! I still have to read Delirium! I am concerned about the cliffhangers! I hate cliffhangers. Still after reading your review I am reminded yet again that I need to read this series!

    • Ari

      Well, Lauren seems to know how to give you a heart-attack at the end of these books. I definitely can’t wait to read the 3rd one, so I don’t know, if you think you can’t possibly wait another year for the last book, maybe you should wait until it comes out and then start this series 🙂

  • Holly Carter

    I need to read this series like yesterday!

    • Ari

      I hope you will like it. This one is my favorite between the two of them, but I have this feeling that the next one will be even better 🙂

  • Alicelovesyou

    Do you know when the next book comes out? I though this one was great!

    • Ari

      I saw this on GoodReads: ‘Expected publication: February 2013 by HarperTeen’
      Not sure if this is the final date but sometime around it anyways 🙂 I can’t wait to read it too ;))

  • Bubble988

    I have to disagree with some of your review, I was one of those people who cried at the end of the first book and I’ll try to tell you why. She was broken, and he was there. He was there for her, he risked his life for her when he could have let her go through with the procedure. He was her last hope to live, and he pulled through. To imagine that kind of love, makes me want to fall in hopelessly in love. I feel like Delirium was definitely not as action packed, but like there was more emotion involved. I loved the first one, and I was somehow disappointing in Pandemonium. Don’t get me wrong Pandemonium was amazing, but I saw almost everything coming, even the end. Perhaps it was the *****SPOILER**** fact that Oliver kept referencing that there was no way Alex could be dead? I feel like that was over the top-obvious foreshadowing to me. Anyways, I can’t wait to read the next book she writes for this series, this book will have me guessing because I think it’s such a difficult decision to make. Who will win this love triangle, I don’t know but I’m sure I’ll be happy with Oliver’s choice. On a side note, I love her writing style. She’s descriptive, but not overly descriptive and her language is captivating. The flow of the story is equally astonishing and I may have found a new favorite writer?

    • Ari

      Yes, I agree with you, but that is all about the first book, and the ending was the only emotional part of it that I did enjoy. (and I have to appreciate the author for making me love the second book which was a great surprise for me)

      Don’t get me wrong, it is not that I don’t understand why people cared for Alex, but the fact that they kept telling how they were feeling “Lena’s pain”.. which from where I stand was almost inexistent (or maybe I am not sensitive enough).

      On a side note (and a second thought), I liked this strong Lena from the second book. She is not this pathetic girl sitting in a corner, crying when everything is taken away from her. She stands up, and fights for the things she believes in. (if Alex was to be dead she couldn’t change that fact, so at least make it count right?)
      Still, I was disappointed because people made me think that the story was really touching, and tear-jerking, but I guess I should have enjoyed it even better just because it wasn’t, and after all that’s a good thing.

      Back to the point… did she make me care about her losing Alex? No.. she didn’t.
      I cared for him, I liked him, I found myself missing him. But she barely thought about him once or twice and that was kind of it. Again, I am not judging her, but I just felt no emotion and I tried to see why other people did. I still have no answer for that.