Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
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.
Date Read: June 11, 2012
Reaction while reading the last two pages: "OH MY GAAAAAWD!" (while pulling my hair)
Initial reaction after reading: "F*CK!!!" (I don't swear a lot. I promise. But that's just what I felt saying/screaming after reading the last word in the book.)
I would have given this book FIVE STARS just for blowing my mind off at the end. But all in all, Pandemonium's 375 pages seemed to drag on and felt longer than Delirium's 480. I liked it a lot, even though I read it with less enthusiasm and excitement, but equal anticipation, than Delirium.
Well, the only downside I could think of is that the second book introduced a "Then and Now" way of reading, with the past (after Lena ran away from Portland) and present alternating chapter after chapter. At first, I found it a bit difficult getting into my reading mode because it's a little hard for me to recall some of the events from previous chapters of a different setting (and because it's new to me). But as I read on, it became easier. The "Now" chapters are far more interesting than the "Then" chapters. Maybe that's why they alternated the chapters, to keep the readers going.
The second book is quite at the opposite end of the first one -- new characters, new setting, etc... A new Lena emerges. The story is more action-packed and more intriguing as you continue nearing the end. What interests me the most, though, is Julian.
If you have been scouring the internet for Pandemonium reviews or other related things, it may not be a surprise to you that there's a new guy in the scene. In Delirium, after her escape, Lena has been shattered and heartbroken because Alex got left behind, got caught between the cruel hands of the government. Then, in Pandemonium, her path gets tangled with the Mayor's son Julian. (That's it. No more spoiling.)
Julian? Alex? I love Alex! But let me tell you this: I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO CONFUSED IN MY WHOLE BOOK-READING LIFE! Usually, there's always a certain guy I am rooting for in love triangles and I stick with that guy 'til the end. But Julian and Alex? Urghhh!
Aside from that, I like how Lena grew in Pandemonium. She's stronger and tougher, and in a way, more independent and smarter. Lena has renewed herself as she tried to bury her past. She has new found friends and a new life.
To sum it all up, I guess the book deserves five stars. But you know, I'm a little devil inside (sometimes), so I'll give it 4.5. The beginning of the book was okay. Nothing really happened much. Some fighting, action, and romance in the middle, then, BOOM! IT ENDS WITH A BLOW. :)
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