It is 95 days until Lena undergoes her operation for the cure. She will be turning 18 and getting cured will mean she will not get the terrible disease amor deliria nervosa. Otherwise known as being in love. She has, after all, grown up reading the Safety, Health, and Happiness Handbook, which describes in great detail what love does to a human. How it kills them. She's followed all of the rules, has always done what was asked of her. Until one day she meets a boy named Alex, who hints at things she never allowed herself to imagine before. A veil has been lifted from Lena's eyes, and she will have to choose exactly how much she wants to see.
Wow. I mean, WOW. I've always heard good things about Lauren Oliver, especially her debut Before I Fall, but haven't read it yet. So as this was my first experience with her, I was completely blown away. There were some similarities I saw between this book and Scott Westerfeld's Uglies series, but they did not take away from the world Oliver had created. Everything was perfect- Lena's emotions, her best friend Hana, Alex's secrets. The timing and pacing held strong throughout the entire book, there weren't any slow spots or lengthy passages of exposition. Oliver inserts little pieces from the Book of Shhh into the chapters here and there, which I liked because it rounded out the idea of so much government control. I read the last 150 pages at a feverish pace, feeling as though I had contracted the deliria myself. Readers who enjoyed Allie Condie's Matched will find something even more built up in this all-consuming novel.
Overall Rating: 5 Stars