Thursday, May 25, 2017

Audiobook Review: Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

Title: Pandemonium (Delirium #2)
Author: Lauren Oliver
Narrator: Sarah Drew
Publication Date: February 28, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen

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Reviews for book 1 & book 3

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.

Lauren Oliver delivers an electrifying follow-up to her acclaimed New York Times bestseller, Delirium. This riveting, brilliant novel crackles with the fire of fierce defiance, forbidden romance, and the sparks of a revolution about to ignite. 

After the events of Delirium, Lena is on the run. She is still reeling from her escape into the wilds and her separation from Alex, and now she has to learn how to survive. She finds herself taken in by the Resistance, and her eyes are opened to a whole new way of life. But when she crosses paths with a boy who is a leader of the Delirium Free America movement, she begins to question which side she wants to be on.

Wow. I honestly think this is one of the most disappointing sequels I have ever read. I really loved Delirium and I was so excited to continue on with the series, but I really disliked this book. Everything that I loved about Delirium was missing from Pandemonium.

One of my favorite things about Delirium was the world and the way that the society had merged science and faith. There was a very political theme in Pandemonium, pitting the Resistance against the members of the Delirium Free America. But we barely learned anything more about the society and how our current America developed into the one in this series. I was so intrigued by the world in the first book, and I was so upset that I didn't get to learn anything more about the world in the second.

I also found Pandemonium to be incredibly boring. The book was told through two different timelines: "Then" and "Now." The "Now" sections had a bit more action in them, but the "Then" chapters were SO BORING. It was just pages and pages of a bunch of kids surviving in the woods. Nothing happened at all to develop the plot, and I was frequently tempted to skip these chapters entirely.

I really enjoyed all of the characters in Delirium, but I had some problems connecting to the characters that I was supposed to sympathize with in Pandemonium. Julian, Lena's new love interest, had decent character development and I found myself liking him by the end of the book. But I didn't feel any connection to any of the characters that were part of the Resistance. Maybe this is because I found their chapters to be incredibly boring, or maybe they just had poor characterization. But I don't care about what happens to them or their cause whatsoever.

I will still give the final book in this trilogy a try, because I want to see how it ends. I'm crossing my fingers that this series is seriously suffering from second-book syndrome, and things will get better in the next book. I really think this was the most disappointing sequel I have ever encountered. I was so excited to pick it up, and now I am left dreading the third book. Hopefully I can enjoy Requiem more than Pandemonium.