Monday, 2 May 2011

If love was a disease, would you take the cure?

This was the question glaring up at me when Delirium by Lauren Oliver arrived from UK Book Tours. Would I? At first I thought...maybe.... yes, after all think of the problems - mental, physical, psychological, political and social caused by love. But then I read the book.

17 year old Lena is just a few months away from receiving the cure delivered to all 18 year olds on their birthday, she desparetly wants that cure - an escape from the fear of the disease, a disease that run wild in her mother, a disease which killed her mother and haunts her days. Then of course she meets and boy.

I won't go any further as we all know where this scenario will take us, and although I could make a vague guess at the ending before I even picked up this book it was a good read. The dystopian world is well created, the idea of love being a disease if presented in a negative light was plausible, and the argument for arranged marriages always has a strong point to make. The not being able to love your own children I hadn't forseen, then my views changed drastically.

I would give this book 4 stars as I loved the idea for the story, really liked Lena, Alex, Hana and little Gracie, the setting was vivid and certainly created a picture in my mind, and the ending wasn't actually as I imagined. My only fault was that I just didn't feel the intensity of their love, it was their at times but when I read Twilight, The Chaos Walking Trilogy (amongst others) I've been drawn back to that rememberance of that hungry, all consumming first love, here I think she just missed it.
A good read if you love dystopian YA, but there are better out there.


Carl V. said...

I was tempted to buy all three versions of this book just because I loved the covers so much and thought they would look really cool grouped together on a shelf or put on the wall in some sort of art installation.

John Michael Cummings said...

re: book review request by award-winning author

Dear Katrina's Reads:

I'm an award-winning author with a new book of fiction out this fall. Ugly To Start With is a series of thirteen interrelated stories about childhood published by West Virginia University Press.

Can I interest you in reviewing it?

If you write me back at, I can email you a PDF of my book. If you require a bound copy, please ask, and I will forward your reply to my publisher. Or you can write directly to Abby Freeland at:

My publisher, I should add, can also offer your readers a free excerpt of my book through a link from your blog to my publisher's website:

Here’s what Jacob Appel, celebrated author of
Dyads and The Vermin Episode, says about my new collection: "In Ugly to Start With, set in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, Cummings tackles the challenges of boyhood adventure and family conflict in a taut, crystalline style that captures the triumphs and tribulations of small-town life. He has a gift for transcending the particular experiences to his characters to capture the universal truths of human affection and suffering--emotional truths that the members of his audience will recognize from their own experiences of childhood and adolescence.”

My short stories have appeared in more than seventy-five literary journals, including North American Review, The Kenyon Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Chattahoochee Review. Twice I have been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. My short story "The Scratchboard Project" received an honorable mention in The Best American Short Stories 2007.

I am also the author of the nationally acclaimed coming-of-age novel The Night I Freed John Brown (Philomel Books, Penguin Group, 2009), winner of The Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers (Grades 7-12) and one of ten books recommended by USA TODAY.

For more information about me, please visit:

Thank you very much, and I look forward to hearing back from you.


John Michael Cummings

Alex said...

Love as a disease? An interesting idea, albeit people will never perceive it as such.

Alex from Hunger Games Summary

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