Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Book Review: Requiem

Requiem (Delirium #3)
Lauren Oliver

Release Date: March 5, 2013

Book Description:
They have tried to squeeze us out, to stamp us into the past.

But we are still here.

And there are more of us every day.

Now an active member of the resistance, Lena has been transformed. The nascent rebellion that was under way in Pandemonium has ignited into an all-out revolution in Requiem, and Lena is at the center of the fight.

After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven—pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators now infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels, and as Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor.

Maybe we are driven crazy by our feelings.

Maybe love is a disease, and we would be better off without it.

But we have chosen a different road.

And in the end, that is the point of escaping the cure: We are free to choose.

We are even free to choose the wrong thing.

Requiem is told from both Lena’s and Hana’s points of view. The two girls live side by side in a world that divides them until, at last, their stories converge.

As Delirium trilogy comes to a close, I find myself quite emotionally involved with these characters and their dystopian world that has been so masterfully crafted by Ms. Oliver. Truly, the beautifully lush writing alone would make me recommend these books, but there is also quite a lot to leave you pondering long after you have closed the book. Of course, you have the required elements of a YA romantic triangle, the struggle against the society that has fooled itself into believing perfection can be achieved by simply eradicating love, the thrill of suspense, action and sacrifice for the greater good, and much more.

As many readers know there is no lack in YA dystopian literature nowadays. The shelves at local bookstores are filled with myriads of shiny, intricate covers with promise of exciting adventures and strong heroes and heroines, so I’ll refrain from recapping the story here. What I loved about this particular story is its rich, vivid world building, imperfect heroes that acted foolish and childish at times, but were still able to prevail.

I felt that the novel raised many good questions and explored interesting themes of love, jealousy, cruelty and freedom. At times, I felt Delirium-world was a “Stepford Wives” type of society that urged to create a sense of perfection via artificial means. But in the end, when you cure love what is left underneath? – Hatred, cruelty, calculated coldness? Deliria-free world certainly offered a grim outlook on society. There were many up and downs as this was as much an emotional journey, not only for Lena, Alex, and Julian, but for the reader as well. The life in the Wilds, did not offer much salvation, instead all three were thrown in the midst of the brewing war, which has a sense of being far from over at the end.

As Ms. Oliver urged us to take down the walls in the last paragraphs of Requiem, I felt a bit disappointed that I won’t learn more of what happens to our beloved characters. So many questions left unanswered in the end. I desperately scanned through the last pages again to find bits and pieces of information. What is to come of Lena, Alex, Julian, Hana, Annabel, and Tack and many more who played a pivotal role at one time or another? Imagination – that is what Ms. Oliver offers us at the end – leaving things wide open so we can decide what is next for our beloved characters, whose lives we’ve become invested in so greatly, that we spent unreasonable late hours up – reading. Alas, it is the author’s creative freedom and I admire the choice of the unconventional, or perhaps, this was a convenient solution to the impending Delirium TV series that could potentially go beyond the books. No matter the resolution, the Delirium trilogy is still a great read.


“Perfect dress. Perfect match. A perfect lifetime of happiness. Perfection is a promise, and a reassurance that we are not wrong.” Requiem (p. 13).

“You know you can’t be happy unless you’re unhappy sometimes, right?” Requiem (p. 210).

“A free world is also a world of fracture, just like The Book of Shhh warned us. There is more truth in Zombieland than I wanted to believe.” Requiem (p. 275).

“This is what we are made for: promises, pledges, and sworn oaths of obedience.” Requiem (p. 338).

“This is the strange way of the world, that people who simply want to love are instead forced to become warriors.” Requiem (p. 367).

Other books in the series:


  1. That's a really interesting point about the TV series - it would definitely explain the open ended close to the series (and will make me much more excited about watching it)!

    1. Yes, at least that was my feeling about it. Cause the TV series deal happened around the time Requiem was due to come out. But, now I guess we might never know, if there ever were to be something else... :(


      Thanks for stopping by!


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