Monday, 4 March 2013

Requiem by Lauren Oliver **Review**

This is the final book in the Delirium Trilogy. If you haven't already read books one and two, do not read this review as it contains spoilers for the previous books.
Click here to read my review of Pandemonium, book two in the trilogy.

Requiem by Lauren Oliver
Series: Delirium #3
Pages: 400
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release date: 21st March 2013
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones

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Thanks to Hodder & Stoughton for my review copy

Goodreads synopsis:
This is the third book in the Delirium Trilogy. If you haven't already read books one and two, but want to, don't read this synopsis or review, as it contains spoilers for the other books.

Battling against a society in which love has been declared a disease, Lena now finds herself at the centre of a fierce revolution. But the Wilds are no longer the haven they once were as the government seeks to stamp out the rebels. And Lena's emotions are in turmoil following the dramatic return of someone she thought was lost forever...

Told from the alternating viewpoints of Lena and her best friend Hana, Requiem brings the Delirium trilogy to an exhilarating end and showcases Lauren Oliver at the height of her writing powers - emotionally powerful and utterly enthralling.

I can't believe that already this incredible trilogy is over. I feel as though I've been on such a journey, and made some brilliant new friends along the way! It's kind of sad that it's now all over.

Requiem starts where Pandemonium left off. For those who have read Pandemonium, you'll know what I mean when I say that the ending dropped a pretty big bombshell - so I was itching to find out what would happen next. I'm going to do my absolute best to tell you how I feel about it, without giving too much away.
I will admit that, for a good portion of the book, the romance element drove me mad - not in a particularly bad way, but I just felt so frustrated for Lena and her unexpected situation. But it did give the book a really interesting, new edge that we haven't seen in the other two books, and I was intrigued to see how things would would out and how Lena would deal with the overwhelming emotions that were bound to come with it.

I already really loved Lena , before I even started on Requiem; she's a strong, independent, loyal, caring and determined character; but I ended up having so much more respect for her by the time I got to the end of the book. She suffered through so much - much more than most of us are likely to ever see in our lives, and still got to the end with a positive attitude towards the future. I can't even imagine having the strength that Lena shows all the way through, no matter what she was faced with.

I think what I loved most about this final book in the series, was how the chapters alternated between Lena's and Hana's points of view, which meant that obviously we get Lena's story - the main story, really - but we also get a proper glimpse into the other side of things, with Hana, who is engaged to be married to the new, ruthless mayor of Portland, Fred Hargrove.
Fred turns out not to be quite as he first seems, as Hana discovers more and more about her husband-to-be, and the terrible things he's done in the name of gaining power and control for himself. Hana's world suddenly has a very frightening underbelly!
Once all of these secrets started to be revealed, and Hana started keeping secrets of her own, I knew I had to know what would happen to her, what she would decide to do, and whether or not Hana and Lena's paths would cross again, as I was sure they should. I was totally hooked by both Lena's and Hana's stories, right until the end.

I feel I should say at least a little about Julian. He was the son of the Head of the DFA (Deliria Free America), Thomas Fineman, and the figurehead for a DFA campaign, supporting the cure, when he and Lena first met in Pandemonium. If you've not read Pandemonium, stop reading now. If you have read it, you'll know that when Lena and Julian get forced together, a new, surprising relationship blossoms between them. By the end, Julian has escaped to the wilds, with the help of Lena and the other invalids and members of the resistance.
Requiem is where Julian really comes into his own; he's no longer the boy being made to do what he is told is right, not what he wants to do, and he'll no longer be pushed about by those around him. He has learnt to stand his ground. Each time we see him, he grows as a character, and he eventually shows his worth as a part of the group in the wilds, taking each task head-on and learning the ropes fast. He's also unbelievably understanding of Lena and what she is going through since Alex returned at the end of Pandemonium. This is what I meant when I said that the romance in the book is kind of frustrating - Lena is caught between two boys, both of whom she has intense feelings for (even though Alex is not as he once was), and Julian's reaction to this, and the way he tried to deal with the situation was admirable - especially considering his own world had only recently been turned upside-down! He was a very sweet character all the way through, and I definitely liked him more than I liked Alex in this book (up until the end anyway, but you'll have to read it to find out why), even though I wanted things to work out between Alex and Lena (who wouldn't want that?!).

Talking of Alex, I know he had a tough time of it, being locked away where he was, only to get out and find that the girl he loved had pretty much found someone else, but really, did he have to be so vile and cold? What did he expect her to do? She thought he was dead after all.
At first I found myself so annoyed with him, wishing he would pull his act together and stop being so immature about things, but as the story went on, I wasn't quite as annoyed with him, until eventually I wasn't annoyed with him at all. All the annoyance from the beginning is definitely worth it in the end, though!
I'm not in any way saying that this is a bad thing - in fact, I don't think the story would have been as good had he come back and declared his continuing love for Lena - I think it would have gotten in the way of the main story, which was the resistance and the push to win their freedom - so I'm definitely glad that things were this way.

And I have to say... What. An. Ending! Even though we've now come to the end of the story, there is definitely more life to it after the final page has been turned. I know I will be thinking about what eventually became of the characters after the final big event, and whether Lena will finally get her happily ever after.

I'm so sad to be saying goodbye to what is almost definitely my favourite trilogy, but at the same time, it was so wonderful to see Lena and her friends finally get to the end of their journey.
But, of course, this is not exactly the end, as an adaptation for TV is currently in the making. A lot of the characters, especially the main characters, have already been cast, and you can catch up with who is playing which character on Lauren Oliver's blog. I can't wait to see how it will translate to screen!

If you haven't already picked up Lauren Oliver's Delirium trilogy, I absolutely urge you to do it - you're in for one incredible journey. It's certainly one you won't ever forget!


Jess Hearts Books! said...

Oh I just loved this review Dani! I agree that after that ending I'm left wondering what the characters are up to now. Hana's chapters were my favourite and I felt so bad for both Alex and Julian I agree that Julian was really understanding about the situation but ultimately no matter how much I love Julian I am Team Alex. Really looking forward to the TV show I just hope they pull it off!

Pen to Paper said...

I hope they pull it off too, Jess! Have you been keeping up with the casting announcements on Lauren's blog? It's looking up so far! Although, weirdly, it looks as though Julian is going to be in it almost straight away...
We'll just have to see!

Brenna said...

Oh, I love this series so much! I really appreciated you taking the time to talk about Julian's growth in this book, because I noticed that too. I wasn't a big fan of him in Pandy, but he really grew on me here. Although Alex will forever be my favourite <3

Thanks for sharing your review! I'm glad you enjoyed it like I did :)

Brenna from Esther's Ever After

Kelly Powell said...

Thank you for sharing your review!!!

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