Book Review: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

“The deadliest of all deadly things: It kills you both when you have it and when you don’t.”

This book opens with a very interesting concept: Love is a disease. Love is feared. Love is deadly. Love must be eradicated. And Lena Morgan Jones is terrified of it. She counts the days until her procedure, the solution to this life-threatening disease. After the procedure, she will be cured, and unable to catch this “deadliest of all deadly diseases.”

But what if this world is not as safe as she thought? What if this disease is the only thing that will keep her safe?

The book is incredibly well written, and I learned several things from it.

First and foremost:

Love Is Powerful

People try to get rid of things because they are scared of it. Why are they scared of something? Because it is powerful, or uncontrollable or unpredictable and love is all of the above. And in this story, the world blames love for everything that has gone wrong in the past. Yet the Bible points out just how important love is.

“So now, faith, hope and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13 (ESV)

What I really appreciated about this book is that it did not just focus on the mainstream definition of love. Obviously, there is also romance and one of the best love stories I have come across recently, but all the author’s attention was not taken up only by the romance. The love between friends and family is also prominent. Which raised another important point for me, love is not just about romance. When we hear the word love, we automatically think about couples and holding hands, but by focusing on that we don’t give enough attention to the love that we get from our friends and family. We should not underestimate this love. While boyfriends or girlfriends come and go, our family and our friends stick around. They love us despite our flaws and help us through our worst. Despite the fact that we are constantly chasing romantic partners and then taking our friends and family for granted. So, here’s a shout out to the friends and family whose love we take for granted, know that you are appreciated.

Our Emotions Are Not a Disadvantage

I have often felt like my life would be easier if I could numb my feelings, just for a while. Our feelings cause us a lot of pain but at the same time a lot of joy. If we remove our ability to feel, we wouldn’t be human. The damage we will do if we have no feelings is beyond comprehension. The damage that the people in Delirium do to each other shows this very clearly.

People Should Not Play God

God created us with feelings for a reason. People trying to play God and making improvements to His creation will never succeed. There will always be people who fight against it until their very last breath. Life is precious and taking away one of the biggest parts of our being is cruel and has horrendous consequences. Lena starts to see the cracks in her perfect world as she is exposed to more and more violence from the “cured”.

Just imagine a world without love, Lauren Oliver most certainly did and portrayed it very effectively in her book. I would recommend this book, the characters are amazing, the plot well-crafted and the love story will leave you with butterflies and on cloud nine right alongside Lena. So instead of just imagining what the world would be like without love, read this book.

“You can build walls all the way to the sky and I will find a way to fly above them. You can try to pin me down with a hundred thousand arms, but I will find a way to resist. And there are many of us out there, more than you think. People who refuse to stop believing. People who refuse to come down to earth. People who love in a world without walls, people who love into hate, into refusal, against hope, and without fear. I love you. Remember. They cannot take it.”

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