Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Requiem by Lauren Oliver

Title: Requiem
Author: Lauren Oliver
Genre: YA Dystopic
Pages: 391
Ages: 12+
Review Rating: 2/4


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.


I was so excited for this novel to come out. I put it on hold at the library and had to wait a painstaking month to get it! Once I did, I went right home and started it. But after a day or so, I knew this wasn't going to be like Delirium or Pandemonium. The first two novels in the series were full of interesting plot developments and characters that made you invest in what was going on. You really felt Alex and Julian's love for Lena. You walked right along Lena in her terrifying discovery of the way her world really worked. But at the start of Requiem, I felt like she had totally lost herself and her purpose. She had become a kind of whinny, unmotivated, little girl; not the character that I had come to know in the first two novels. She spends most of the novel trying to decide what she wants with Julian, and how to get over Alex. She complains through almost the whole thing about everything being unfair from her little love triangle, to the adults leaving her out of the planning of the battles. She doesn't do much in the way of actually helping the resistance besides the daily menial tasks of survival. 

Also, I have a hard time when authors decide to randomly change the format of the writing style. In books one and two, it is a first person POV from Lena. But starting with chapter two, we get the whole story also from Hana's POV, whom we haven't seen since book one. I didn't understand the choice to do it from both points of view because it didn't add that much to the story except for make you hate Fred Hargrove. Which might have been the reason for it, but it seems like a very extreme way to do it. There are quiet a few things with Hana's event's that also don't make any sense in conjunction with the rest of the novel. I'm guessing the author wanted the reader to know what the cure really did to the people, so we could see what the problems are with it . . . But I think we got it in the first two books, we didn't need an every-other-chapter deal to get it. 

The reason I'm giving it a little higher rating then I normally would with a novel I didn't particularly enjoy was the ending. The last twenty pages or so of the book pulled me back in. I once again cared about 'the cause' and the characters. Some really great things happen that I don't want to give away, but I really enjoyed how Oliver pulled together some great battle sequences and the high drama of war. She does end it on an interesting note. I know the novel is supposed to be the final in the trilogy, but she left it in such a way that she could continue the series very easy. The last half a page does delve into a more introspective idea of the novels, using the events as symbols for our own lives. I liked it, but I know many fans will be a little disappointed in it. 

Overall, I enjoyed the book series, but the ending was most definitely not the bang that I was expecting from reading book one. 

Also, Delirium, book one of the series, has been picked up by 20 Century Fox studios for a TV show in the Fall of 2013

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