Friday, March 15, 2013

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Publisher: HarperTeen
Release: February 28, 2012
Source: Library
Others in the Series: Delirium and Requiem
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.
When I read Delirium, I fell in love with the writing. The plot, while certainly not boring, was just what you would expect from reading the synopsis, but the way Lauren Oliver weaved words together completely took me by surprise. The sentences seemingly glowed on the page, and I expected the same captivating style in Pandemonium.

Luckily, I got that. But I also got so much more.

Pandemonium picks up right after Lena has escaped from her city, but also flashes forward to a time when she has entered society again, undercover. This technique allowed the author to easily build my interest in how the main character went from the former time frame to the latter and  carry on a great story line about what happens to Lena after she reintroduces herself to her old country. Reminiscent of the ending in Delirium, there is also plenty of action along the way that proves Lauren Oliver's ability to craft a captivating battle scene and use the second novel in this trilogy to showcase that talent even further.

Lena is not always in an immediate life or death situation, though, and there are many instances when her emotions are explored in much more depth than they had been previously. She still experiences the blindingly beautiful deliria that was spotlighted in the first book, but Pandemonium allows readers to get a clearer glimpse at how she reacts to loss and being forced into violence in order to live. This book takes the slices of her personality that were just touched upon in Delirium and magnifies them, making Lena much more complex.

Despite all of the raving praise I can give the plot, I have to say that the ending was a bit of a disappointment. It is pretty predictable and nowhere near the shocking revelation for which I was hoping. However, the final scene does do a very good job of leaving readers hanging; anyone who reads it will have no choice but to pick up the final book, Requiem, as soon as he or she can.

Pandemonium consists of everything that was good about its predecessor, but amplified. It is basically Delirium squared, and an absolute must-read for fans of the first novel.


  1. I'm with you on the ending. It was a disappointment for me, but I still REALLY want to read Requiem. I have little heart palpitations when I see the cover. Great review, Emily :)

  2. I just finished Delirium last week and Pandemonium will be up very soon! I have to admit that I wasn't a massive fan of the ending of the first book, despite loving the world-building and characterisation. Ah well, I'm still looking forward to reading this one :)

  3. Delirium squared? I recently bought this one since Requiem is now out, figuring by the time I actually read Pandemonium, the final one will be out in paperback. :D I read Delirium when it first came out, and really enjoyed the world-building, and the characters, so I'm definitely looking forward to Pandemonium.

    Lovely review, Emily! Thanks so much for dropping by my blog.


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