Delirium by Lauren Oliver
From Amazon: They say that the cure for Love will make me happy and safe forever. And I've always believed them. Until now. Now everything has changed. Now, I'd rather be infected with love for the tiniest sliver of a second than live a hundred years smothered by a lie.
Although I read a lot of different kinds of books, I definitely have a type of book I'm drawn to. And that's Young Adult fiction set in a dystopia, preferably with a female lead character, preferably part of a trilogy. I may not fit the core demographic, but I'm not concerned. A good book is a good book, no matter who it's written for.
There are two ways to tell that a first book in a series is succeeding: first, when you're reading it, and you have to stop reading it, you want nothing more than to be reading it again (also known as you finish very quickly) and second, once you're finished you want to be reading book two immediately.
Delirium passed both tests. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Lena is an excellent main character and I liked how sure she was about what was going to make her happy in life at the beginning. And (main love interest) Alex - although he could have stood to be a little more flawed, he served his purpose as the catalyst for change, and was sufficiently fan girl swoon worthy. The premise of love as disease great.
The biggest complaint I have is that nothing particularly surprising happened. Except the thing with the cows. I was surprised by that, I suppose. But I was not surprised by any of the major plot points. The overall pattern of things that happened was very familiar, if you happen to read a lot of young adult trilogies. Luckily, the particulars of the story, it's good characters and beautiful writing carried it to enjoyable heights, even with it's predictable patterns.
On a scale from Totally Awesome to Horrifically Awful, I'd give it a Just Awesome. I'm really looking forward to book two.