Requiem (Delirium #3)

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3.5
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3.1(13)
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3.2(13)
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Does not disappoint, though is an unsatisfying conclusion to a wonderful series.
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
3.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Steph's Review:
It may be a bad thing that I'm writing this review before I review Pandemonium, but trust me, I have A LOT more to say about Requiem. Warning: There will be rants, annoyance, change of hearts, etc. After I finished Pandemonium, I kind of had the "blank look of shock" until I immediately started grabbing for Requiem (which is why I never reviewed Pandemonium, lack of time spent reading and studying for exams). Both Delirium and Pandemonium were flat out amazing, and I finally found myself in love with this series. Requiem changed things a little...

I am so torn about this book. I didn't really know what rating to give it since there were parts I absolutely adored, but parts that really pestered at me. It completely lived up the high standards set by Pandemonium action wise, but the love story? In shreds. The ending? A big HUH?. I think its best to do a "The Good" and "The Bad" comparison. Minor spoilers ahead, view discretion advised.

The Good

Action
While I felt Delirium was lacking in the action, Pandemonium made up for it. Requiem delivers action right to our minds, spot on. The suspense is a killer, the betrayals and backstabbing are the ultimate twists. During the action sequences, my heart was racing with fear and anticipation, and most of the time I just hoped everything would turn out okay. I started to like Lena a lot in Pandemonium, and I wanted her to be lucky, and be happy (happier?). She's faced too much death since reaching the Wilds. The action is heart jolting, and is what really shines throughout the entirety of the novel. I think all this action shows Lauren Oliver's growth as a writer, because the plots and plans are so much more elaborate than before. I actually couldn't see through them this time. This is what mostly kept me engrossed the whole time (I'm a sucker for action!). The Resistance has amassed a huge number of followers, both within the confines of cities and out. The attacks and raids planned were startling and superb!

Hana's Story
Requiem is told in dual POV's, one Hana and the other Lena. In this installment, Hana has been cured of amor deliria nervosa and is prepping to get married to the to-be mayor of Portland, Fred Hargrove. At first I was kind of mad that Hana ended up succumbing to the will of the government, because I always thought it'd be pretty epic if somehow Hana managed to make it out into the Wilds too. From how she was in Delirium, this was a big change in demeanor and it was harder to make a shift from "past-Hana" to "present-Hana". Then I realized how dumb I was about that because Hana lived her whole life primped and primed to take her role in society. After I got past my initial anger, I ended up enjoying Hana's chapters more than Lena's. She is newly cured now, but can't seem let go of her old life completely: i.e. the cure didn't quite work all the way. She's a great actress though and can hide this from the press, her fiancee, her parents, everyone. Her story is one of discovery, about herself and about Fred... who's intentions might be much darker than what appears in the good-boy facade he emulates to the world. Most of the suspense is actually in Hana chapters. Lena gets the action, Hana gets the tension.

Alex is back everyone!
Yes, I was always an Alex girl. Julian was such a wimp...and he never really grew on me. I always though Alex was better for Lena. He joins Lena's group, meaning we've got a 3-way love story going. His and Julian's silent treatment of each other was actually quite amusing. There are parts of "Alex" I was really angry about though, but I'll get to that in the bad under "The Romance".

Annabel
This is Lena's mother, who also goes under the name "Bee" in Requiem. She doesn't have a huge role in the book, but I think her character is a good representation of sacrificing yourself for those you love. She has a noble concept, and I couldn't help but really like her despite not knowing much about her character.

The Bad

Romance
*sighs*. I'm an Alex girl. And he annoyed me for the first half of this book. He's broken on the inside, but I don't take that as an excuse to push everything and anyone he ever cared about away. It wasn't fair to Lena, not fair to himself. I wanted him and Lena to get back together and happy, because even Lena admits she's never loved anyone more than Alex (besides her mom I guess). Julian is messing the whole thing up to me. I don't like him, I think he switched sides to fast, and well he's a wimp. I'm into alpha-male type characters, and Julian...is not. Lena's indecision swamped me too. She clearly was still in love with Alex, couldn't break it to Julian, then decided that if she couldn't fess up she must love Julian. Ack. Her back-and-forth mindsets really annoyed me. There are no more stolen moments in this book like there was in Delirium and Pandemonium. The romance the reader gets come from mentality only.

The Ending
If this ending wasn't so awkward, I could've gotten over myself about the romance issues and given this book a good pat on the back cover, rate it 5 stars, and be done. I honestly don't know what to make of it. Lauren Oliver didn't write the ending to feel like a close of a series, It honestly felt like there was a 4th book on the way or something. There are so many questions unanswered, and the knots are not tied. I don't want to spoil anything, which is hard and leaves this part a little vague, but if you read this book you will understand. There isn't really an ending plot. Lauren basically leaves us with this inspirational comment about love, life, and fighting for your deepest desires, but it wasn't a closing. There was no finality, and the ending of this book really made me feel like I was hanging somewhere. It really disappointed me because we never find out the imminent futures for the characters, no definite HEA, just...emptiness. I don't know if she's trying to say "you can never predict your own future, so I'm not going to give you anything to predict my character's futures" or something like that. There just wasn't a good resolution to the conflict, which just made the ending to this series discouraging. It was a wonderful read until I realized that there was not more left of it when there should have been.

You might have noticed I didn't talk much about our protagonist, Lena. I just don't know where to put her on this spectrum since she was overall just "meh" to me in Requiem. I liked her during the action, I despised her during the romance. She was just okay.

Overall, this book is great while you are part of it, when your reading it, but once its over you feel like you've been crudely ripped away from a world you wish you could stay in longer. I do recommend it to Delirium fans, though read at your own risk.

From Steph @ http://awalkonwords.blogspot.com/
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Requiem review
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
I really wasn't as disappointed by the ending as most people seem to have been. I think it was a pretty satisfactory ending for the series overall. A lot of loose ends were tied up and answers given, and it left me feeling hopeful for the world's future.
However.
I was pretty disappointed by the ending situation with the boys. I would have much preferred a definitive answer and that Lena ended up with the guy I liked best. Instead, nobody wins and it's just a "we'll see what the future holds" situation.
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Mixed Feelings
Overall rating
 
3.7
Plot
 
3.0
Characters
 
3.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
My feelings for Requiem are mixed. It’s been months since I read it, and I’m still not sure how I feel. I put down Requiem and felt satisfied. I was content with the ending – I’m a firm believer that there was no perfect way to end this series and I think Lauren Oliver did a good job with the ending.

But I just wasn’t able to get the same emotion out of Requiem that I did out of Delirium and Pandemonium. I was sobbing – legit straight up sobs – while reading the first two books and I had essentially no reaction to Requiem at all. That could totally be my own problem, but it kind of lessened my enjoyment of it.

Overall, I was satisfied with the ending to the series and I’ll definitely be rereading all three books in the future, but I still wish I had gotten more feeling from Requiem.
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Requiem (Delirium #3) by Lauren Oliver: Mediocore at best
Overall rating
 
3.7
Plot
 
3.0
Characters
 
3.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Huh...well that was...anti-climatic. Review to come...really have to think on this one. Went from 4 to 3 stars now. I just can't stand to give it more. I need to dwell a bit more. Will write this review tonight or tomorrow.

Ok, so I am finally going to review this. I will be honest and say that it was really hard for me to rate this book. There are things that I liked about, a lot. But I think the things I didn't like about it outweighed those and it brought my rating down. It actually pains me to give this only 3 stars when I rated the first and second book so much higher. I guess I had very high hopes for this book and they were just thrown to the wind. So, let's get on with it. I will try my hardest to keep this spoiler free, but I have to say that if you have not read the first or second book you might be totally lost and you will definitely read stuff you should not know.

Blurb from Goodreads:
They have tried to squeeze us out, to stamp us into the past.
But we are still here.
And there are more of us every day.
Now an active member of the resistance, Lena has been transformed. The nascent rebellion that was under way in Pandemonium has ignited into an all-out revolution in Requiem, and Lena is at the center of the fight.
After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven—pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators now infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels, and as Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor.
Maybe we are driven crazy by our feelings.
Maybe love is a disease, and we would be better off without it.
But we have chosen a different road.
And in the end, that is the point of escaping the cure: We are free to choose.
We are even free to choose the wrong thing.
Requiem is told from both Lena’s and Hana’s points of view. The two girls live side by side in a world that divides them until, at last, their stories converge

So I'll start with the cover. To be honest, these covers with the girls face on them are just ok for me. They aren't spectacular. They give me a picture of what Lena might look like and that's about it. They tell me nothing of the story, or what is contained in the book. I would like to see something that reveals those things a bit more.

As for the characters in this book, I don't find they are really well fleshed out. I don't find you get the depth from them that you had in the other books.
Now, as for Lena, I disliked her a lot in this book. She did so much growing in the second book. She became this strong, tough woman who learned to fight for what she wanted and how to protect herself. But in this book, she fell back from that, becoming a wishy washy, dependent, annoying teen who was torn between her two "loves". In all honesty, I wanted to slap her across the face for most of this book. I felt like she was trudging along hoping that things would just work out. She could not make a decision to save her life. And she didn't fight for what she wanted. In book 2 she was strong and determined, in this one she was weak and almost uncaring.
As for Julian and Alex, well, let's just say that you don't get much of them in the story. You get what Lena wants to show you, and it's not much. You get Lena's struggle to figure out who she should be with, when all along she knows in her heart what she wants but does not go after it. Totally frustrating and annoying. She pines away and crawls back into the shell she lived in when we read Delirium.
While Hana's POV was interesting, I truly found that it was not necessary to the story. I understand how the two stories collided in the end, but honestly, I didn't need to hear from Hana's POV. She brought nothing to this story for me except to fill in what seemed like what would have been empty chapters otherwise.

I can say that I truly love Oliver's writing. It's very solid. She really knows how to put words to paper and, for the most part in this book, keep you interested in what was going on. But in all honestly, the plot was thin and fairly unmoving. Nothing grabbed me and had me saying "oh my goodness, I cannot put this book down!" I needed to know what happened in the end and that was the only thing that kept me going. I was almost disinterested in what happened to bring us to that point.

As for the conclusion, did it answer questions, not really. It kind of just hung there having me wondering why I even read the book. There was no closure and since I know this to only be a trilogy, I can't think of why Oliver would not let it go out with a bang. It was reminiscent of Mockingjay's ending, which I thought was rushed and also left things kind of undone and unsaid. And the fact that we really got nothing about Alex in this story, well, that was really disappointing. I want to know what happened to him while he and Lena were apart. Where was the swoon worthy Alex, the one everyone fell in love with in Delirium? If you're looking for him, you won't find him in this installment. If anything, he is annoying and really made me mad for most of the book, when he even made an appearance.

So, overall, I was totally unsatisfied with this conclusion. I am disappointed in Oliver and how she chose to end this series. It's as if she ran out of steam and focus and didn't know where to go with what she created. I missed the heart pumping thrill and overworked brain I got with the first two books. It saddens me to have to give this such a low rating. In all honesty, after talking with a few other reviewers, I almost dropped my rating to a 2, but I believe that Oliver's writing really deserves better.

So, should you read this book? If you read the first two, it really is a must, in my opinion. I don't think you can sit back and not finish it out. However, I would go in with lower expectations than you might currently have because, much to my chagrin, this book is highly over rated by most.
Good Points
Amazing writing from Oliver, as always. Her style flows well and is easy to read. Her descriptions sink you deep into her world and her plot line is interesting and engaging.
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Pretty Much Amazing...
Overall rating
 
4.3
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Why I Loved It: *Warning* There may be spoilers from the first two books in this review. If you have not read Delirium or Pandemonium, back away slowly and get busy reading.

I have decided that this is a very hard review to write. When I finished the book, I was snooping through Goodreads because I had a feeling that there would be a lot of mixed reviews on the book. I mean Ms. Oliver took some risks, and I figured people would either love it or be like "bleh." I had decided when I got about halfway through the book that I would be including a definition of the word requiem in my review. When I found out what the title of the book was going to be, I was kinda surprised. It's an interesting choice. So I looked it up. And keeping the definition in mind when I read was actually kind of helpful. Surprise, surprise when I was looking through reviews, I came across Jenna @ Making the Grade's review. A) I love her blog. It's pretty fabulous. and B) I was pleasantly surprised to see just how much her review reflected my thoughts. I almost thought I could just post a link to her review and say "ditto", but that would be selling this great book short. It needs great reviews *not that I normally think mine are particularry great* so here we go.

According to Webster, Requiem means...
1: a mass for the dead
2 a: a solemn chant (as a dirge) for the repose of the dead
b: something that resembles such a solemn chant
3 a: a musical setting of the mass for the dead
b: a musical composition in honor of the dead

For me, that definition makes perfect sense with the direction Ms. Oliver takes this novel as the final book in the triology. The book was masterfully written, unconvential in the current trend of dystopian novels, and a joy to read. I should say that Delirium was not my favorite of books. I liked it enough, but the idea behind the book was what ensured that I read Pandemonium. And I loved Pandemonium. LOVED IT. What Delirium did have though was an awesome romance. That being said, the week before Requiem came out, I reread Delirium, read "Hana", then reread Pandemonium, and then read "Raven". I wanted to be prepared for this book because I had wished I had reread Delirium before Pandemonium when I got to the huge cliff at the end of Pandemonium with Alex's abrupt return. Drama, drama, drama *Runaway Bride voice*.

Here's the dealio. For me, Requiem was not about Lena's choice between Alex and Julian. It wasn't. That was a part of the book, but Ms. Oliver opened up this world even more to show that the problem was much bigger than any one person. I think if she wanted the focus to be on Lena's love life, Hana wouldn't have had any part of this book. Lena would have alternated with Alex or Julian or both or something like that. But no. Ms. Oliver chose the cured Hana to alternate POV's with the uncured Lena. Both girls have somewhat narrow views of their world seen through the lens cap of their circumstances. Through both of those views though, the reader gets an in-depth look into this futureistic United States, the restistance, and the ultimate problem. Love was never the issue. Control and power and the ability to use those key points to increase the individual is what the issue was. Love was just the key to get there. Requiem is real and powerful and incredibly action-packed and intense. Ms. Oliver is such a gifted writer, and I will read anything she writes.

The reader does not leave the triology with all their questions answered. You will have lots of questions most likely. However, I find that such is ok. We don't always get resolution in the real world. We might not like it as readers, but I came away from the ending with a mix of emotions. Heartbroken? Perhaps. Satified? Sure. Floored with my respect for the incredible writing I had just experienced over the day? You betcha.

More reasons to read this book NOW
Lena's mother has more attention
Alex's return with his awesome self
Julian gains more cool points
Hana's POV actually is pretty awesome
The Restistance kicks some serious butt
Alex's story is at the end of Requiem in the first print books *SO GOOD*
If you would like to see Jenna's review over at Making the Grade, just go on here.
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