Author: Lauren Oliver
Series: Delirium #2
Rating: 3.5 / 5 stars
While Delirium was a straight forward narrative, Oliver throws a bit of a curve ball at us in Pandemonium by switching the narrative between a present Lena and a past Lena. While I did not see much point to the style, it did allow essentially two different tales to be told in the same novel without a gaping hole in between the two since the narratives are woven together throughout the novel.
While Delirium offered little action and much romance as Lena set upon a path to self discovery, so to say, Pandemonium – while not living up to its name – at least offered more action and a little less drama. Of course, Lena spends a good portion at the beginning of the past tense cycle moaning and groaning over the loss of Alex and second guessing her decision to leave now that he is gone. I guess this, however, is to be expected, seeing as how she is under the influence/infected by love.
Why in her first person narrative Lenahints that she has changed a lot, especially in the present timeline, I didn’t really see her character develop that way. Granted, her demeanor has definitely changed; that I will not argue with. But I didn’t see that development in her character as a progressive, subtle change. Instead, it felt more like she changed almost immediately once she arrived in the Wilds, as if the scenery itself were enough to harden her and make her tougher and colder.
Pandemonium offered more action and suspense then Delirium, but it was still far from a fast paced, stay up under the covers all night type of page turner. The introduction of Julian soon becomes a replacement for the lost Alex and the related romantic angle. I knew it was only a matter of time before Lena got over Alex and let another guy “infect” her, but at least I thought it would be the bad boy Tact. And least Oliver had the decency to switch it up a little. While Lenafell for the first guy she met in Delirium, as least she had some self control in Pandemonium and waited past more than just one guy introduction before falling again.
While the cliffhanger at the end made me roll my eyes a bit to myself, the plot was still interesting enough throughout the novel that I quickly started in on Requiem to finish out the series.