Saturday, August 17, 2013
Author: Lauren Oliver
Source: Borrowed from Library
Goodreads | Amazon
Wow. I... I'd been meaning to read this for ages, my school library didn't have it, and I had to order it in from the library, which then took two weeks. BUT IT WAS SO WORTH IT.
When people are in love, they are referred to as lovesick. In this book, it's taken very literally. Scientists have found a cure to love, because it's a disease that you can be punished for having.
Lena is such a beautiful character, though at the beginning she was quite naive. Further on in the book, I realised it wasn't her being naive, she had been brainwashed. Lauren Oliver gave Lena quite a transparent personality, but with many other characters, such as Alex, quite translucent individuality. The mix of being able to clearly understand and relate to the main protagonist and having the mystery of another is quite nice to have. And, of course, Alex has become yet another of my book boyfriends! He seems perfect...
What really shocked me in the book was how very little freedom they have. They have a curfew, there are raids, they are stopped in the street to look at identification. Before they are cured, they can't touch boys, talk to them. They are evaluated, most forced to lie, before being matched up to someone suitable. It makes you think about how you would feel, what you would do, if you were confined to this. I would probably do the same as Lena! Another thing was how much fear people had of the guards. They can hurt them on the spot!
My only problem with it is that although it wasn't quite insta-love, they moved pretty fast! He loved her within a few weeks, and they made plans on running away... Though, unlike other books where this feels unrealistic and bugs me, due to the theme and the fact that within a few months she would be cured and have her arranged marriage, it was ok!
It's quite similar to other dystopias, where it's basically based off a "what if" question, but it's different enough, with an uncommon theme (no love) which makes it interesting. Apart from the similarities, it's an absolutely beautiful book.
So, overall, this book was truly beautiful, and shows us what it's like to not be allowed to love. I loved it, and I'll definitely read the others in the series.