By Lauren Oliver
Publication date: February 28, 2012
Delirium ended with a wrenching and heart stopping conclusion. Now in Pandemonium, Lena is living in The Wilds and discovering just how difficult the path to freedom truly is. She is dealing with the loss of her former life and the people she cared about who are no longer part of it. She is also very weak from her ordeal and it will take more than physical strength for her to make it in this new life. Told in alternating chapters between "Then" (her early months in the Wilds) and "Now", Pandemonium is a story that readers will not be able to forget.
Lena has come a long way from the girl she was at the beginning of the series. In Pandemonium, we see her inner strength begin to shine, especially in her interactions with Julian, a new character who believes in the cure as she once did. Lena has lost a lot and at first she is ready to give up but then she reminds herself of what she has sacrificed for freedom and she finds the will to go on. The people who live in the Wilds have a life of deprivation and hardship. Food and medicine are scarce and they have to be constantly vigilant for signs of danger. Still, they find a way to thrive. Their leader, Raven, is a tough young woman who is at times admirable for her strength and at other times she behaves in deplorable ways. She reminded me of some of the people in Mockingjay. There were several times that Pandemonium brought that book to mind as we find out more about the Resistance movement. I was also reminded of Crossed by Ally Condie because of Lena's time in the Wilds and Cassia's struggles in the Outer Provinces.
Some people may not like Pandemonium because of the cliffhanger ending. I have to admit that I was a little disappointed though not surprised by it as things like that often happen in trilogies. Still, I think Lauren Oliver is an excellent writer and I enjoyed most of the book. I am hopeful that I will love book three even though I was slightly disappointed with Pandemonium in the end. There are enough surprises and plot twists to entertain, there is good character development for Lena, and some romance surprisingly enough. I liked the introduction of some new characters and look forward to seeing where the story will take them. Overall I thought Pandemonium was a worthy sequel to Delirium and I can't wait to find out what happens in Requiem.
Readalikes: Crossed by Ally Condie, The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins, Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Note: I read an ARC of this title, courtesy of Around the World ARC Tours