Monday, March 19, 2012

Review: Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

pubisher: HarperTeen

release date: February 28th, 2012

hardcover, 357 pages

intended audience: Young adult

series: Delirium, book 2
(my review of Delirium)


source: from publisher for honest review

Warning! Description, review & video may contain spoilers for Delirium, book #1 in this series. If you haven't read it yet, stop now!

I’m pushing aside the memory of my nightmare,
pushing aside thoughts of Alex,
pushing aside thoughts of Hana and my old school,
like Raven taught me to do.
The old life is dead.
But the old Lena is dead too.
I buried her.
I left her beyond a fence,
behind a wall of smoke and flame.

Review: As dark as Delirium was, with it's theme of love as a disease, Pandemonium is even darker, with a moving story about war, survival, and grief. Told in alternating time frames for each chapter, we get a glimpse at Lena's situation right after she crosses the wall, and further into the future---referred to as "then" and "now". At the beginning, I found this to be a little disorienting, my mind reeling from trying to figure out how in the world she got from point A to point B. It really left me a little lost at the start, but it soon became clear what was happening a few chapters in. Once again, Oliver delivers a story that grips and tears at your heart. Both time frames were compelling, but I find that when stories skip back and forth like this one, I tend to get more invested in one part over the other. In Pandemonium, it was the "now" that caught my attention the most. Maybe it was the slowly blossoming love story, maybe it was the intensity and danger as they get closer and closer to an uprising. But I found myself rushing through the "then" parts to get back to the "now". However, the two hold each other up. When we see Lena's time right after losing Alex, she meets several new, interesting characters, she learns how to survive in the wilds and even, at the worst of times, questions whether this new harsh freedom is worth the price she paid to get there. It builds the story behind how they all end up in the "now".

Another intensely heart-wrenching addition to this series. And once again, Lauren Oliver gives us the kind of twisting cliffhanger ending that leaves the reader gasping for air.

Visit Lauren Oliver at

Purchase Pandemonium at: Amazon BN.comBookDepositoryIndiebound

No trailer for this one, but here you can see Lauren Oliver discussing Pandemonium!


  1. I totally agree about the getting caught up in the now and rushing through the then! :) The "then" parts of the story made Pandemonium a teeny tiny bit slow for me...but, that's just me! :)

    Great review!

  2. Nice review! :) With the then/now sections, I found myself first rushing through now to get to then; but later in the book I was rushing through then to get to now so I guess it balanced out! Don't know how I can wait until 2013 to find out what happens next!

  3. It is interesting, I clearly didn't know it was told from two time periods. I tempt to like this since it makes the the story more enthralling since you are often left in a situation just to switch the time and have to wait again...

    Sounds great!!! Although I admit I was not really planning on reading this one. I was so sad at the end of Delirium... ;((

  4. The 'now' is just as heart breaking as the 'then' sections, simply because there's the exploration of new love despite Lena's heart being deeply scored over the last, and then in the 'then' we're experiencing all the pain and horror of the aftermath of Delirium. Some think it's jarring and, some even say, an easy way out, but I thought it was beautifully, perfectly done. So glad you enjoyed this one! :D