Monday, 17 March 2014

Pandemonium (Delirium, #2) by Lauren Oliver

Description from Goodreads:

I’m pushing aside 

the memory of my nightmare, 
pushing aside thoughts of Alex, 
pushing aside thoughts of Hana 
and my old school, 
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.


Oh my dear god. After the first book Delirium, I was really impressed by the world Oliver had created and the language was the kind that absorbed you straight into the world. So, I had some preconceptions about the book: how will she step up with Pandemonium when the first book was so good?! The start was a little slow, but when she got things moving, I couldn't put the book down. I had to read the whole book in one sit! I think it was 3 a.m when I finished reading because I just couldn't simply stop myself (I think I stopped reading just to get some food). And the funny part is that even though I was really tired after finishing (well, it was 3a.m in my defense), I couldn't sleep because I was so excited about it. I kept reliving my favourite moments and speculating what will happen in the next book. I have to say that Delirium trilogy is one of my favourites at the moment.

The book is basically divided into two different timelines that collide in the last two chapters: "now" and "then". I found the structure to be a really good choice from Oliver, as it gave another new dimension for the whole series and allowed Pandemonium to be distinguished from Delirium quite efficiently (I loved how the chapters began in Delirium with small paragraphs from the book of Shhh or with old sayings). Lauren also introduced some new characters. Some of them I liked, some of them not. For example, a young man called Tack is a character of whom I have mixed feelings about. At the beginning he seems a really strong and complex character and I had quite high hopes for him, but in the end he was a bit of a let-down for me. He had so much potential as a character, but the readers didn't get a chance to get a better look at him Hopefully, in Requiem he won't be as superficial character. But some other new characters like Raven and Julian turned out be quite fine and I'm looking forward to what Oliver will do with them in the future. 

Julian especially was a rather nice surprise for me. I didn't care for him at all once he was introduced. Even though he is brainwashed just like the others in the cured community, I didn't feel sympathy towards him and I was very suspicious of him all the time. However, thanks to a certain link of events, we get to know him better and  after that I could have hit myself because I didn't see it coming. Julian was actually pretty neat guy. I still love Alex unconditionally, but there's something about Julian as well..

I also have to mention that I loved what the author did with Lena - she was all broken up after the events in the book one, and this was really emphasized with her physical and empty emotional state. You really need to read the book to get what I'm meaning. Without revealing too much, Lena has to start her life from a clean slate without any foundation or support from her previous life. And I got to admit, she does pretty fine job doing it considering the circumstances. Another thing is that, even though I was devastated that Alex got killed in the book one, I was super glad too that the book 2 wasn't all about Lena describing her shattered emotional state. I think that Lena's suffering was really well shown through her emotional indifference and physical unwell-being.

Oliver is obviously a wizard in her twists, and even though I often see some coming, some of them in the book were surprises for me! That is always a huge plus for both the author and the book. And I can promise you, the book will end in a major cliff-hanger. I literally squealed a little when I was reading the last few pages. The author really knows her business when it comes to write an ending to a book. I really loved this book!

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