Ariana's Reviews > Pandemonium

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
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's review
Sep 22, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: dystopia, favorites

Wow.. I can't believe it myself, but I loved it!

What a wonderful surprise!
You know, there is nothing better in this world than being wrong when something good is about to happen.

Usually I keep things simple when it comes to reading:
I like the first book in the series, then I continue reading the rest of them; I don’t like the first book, then I stop.
This was not the case…

This book called me – It’s not that I loved the cover (which is beautiful, but I still don’t think that it fits the story), it’s not that the description was mind-blowing (in fact it’s a bit misleading, talking about Lena fighting and being a warrior, which is not really the case here – I wonder if the person that wrote the synopsis knew what this story was about)...
I just took a look at it one day and it looked at me right back and it told me: pick me up!
And I did.. I don’t know why, because I was so sure that I wouldn’t like it.

I was suppose to tell you that it is not much better than the first one, I was suppose to tell you that I still don’t like Lena, I was suppose to tell you that this story has let me down once again, I was suppose to ask you not to read my review because I was supposed to complain endlessly.
Again, this is not the case…

If you are smart, you care. And if you care, you love.

I’ll start with what didn’t make me love this book:

Well, at the beginning I didn’t like Lena.
You know how I didn’t buy her love for Alex? Well, she failed this time to make me believe that she even cared about his death. She cried like once (maybe twice), and she thought about him from time to time (when she needed it to make her stronger), and there were some wonderful words here and there about broken hearts and suffering, but that was kind of it. It’s true, she had other things to think about, but hello! a little bit of heartbreak wouldn’t have kill her.
I have no idea (!) why did some people cry reading this book – I was only sorry for Alex because of my own ‘feelings’ for him (in a ‘I cared about this poor guy in the first book’ kind of way and I knew he deserved better).
I mean, I was like – you idiot, this guy probably went thorough hell because of you, he might be dead! You should cry your heart out, you should feel like dying too, you should make me want to rip my heart out - wanting for him to be alive, to see him one more time (*rolling eyes* I know, I know, I am being overly dramatic right now, but you get the point. I wanted to feel her pain and it didn't deliver)
Also there is this tiny thing – at the beginning even in the 'NOW' chapters I thought she was weak. She was supposed to be this new Lena, stronger and smarter and wanting revenge, but she was still a bit insecure... But that was just in the beginning.

Now, the things that I liked about this book:

The second half of the story had a totally different feeling.
Lena started to grow some (back)bones, she started to make me believe that she has changed, that she was a fighter after all, that she had feelings but also some brains.
She met Julian and even though they were practically enemies, they had to work together; they had to survive and help each other in order to stay alive.
And this is the beginning of a great adventure.

I loved the action in this book. I suffered enormously in the first book because I felt there was no action, but here there was plenty and I loved every scene. As I think I've told you, the first half is a bit slow, but after that I almost couldn’t keep up with all that happened (both in the past and the present). I couldn’t get over a shocking scene in one dimension because I got another strike in the other one).

There was fighting, there was running, there was planning how to survive. . And also there was some drama. Not only related to her loss (Alex and her past life), but there are other characters that we meet, some with a tragic destiny, and you can feel the pain they go through, you want them safe, you grieve for their death.. you really get to care.

"That's the thing about the cure, isn't it? It isn't just about deliria at all. It's about order. A path for everyone. You just have to follow it and everything will be ok."

And there was Julian.
He is the reason I loved this story, because he made Lena a better person.
He is the enemy, he is the symbol of this twisted system, he is a puppet on the outside, but in the inside.. that’s a whole different story.

NOTE: I’ll keep the next part as a spoiler not wanting to ruin somehow your reading experience. So please stay away from it for now.

(view spoiler)

And now the best.. there's the ending.
No, I am not discussing it, but I loved it.
There are 4 words (should I say 3 and a half? LOL) that still make my heart ache, because there is so much truth in them.
Oh my, oh my, oh my.. what a cliffhanger!

Was I surprised to love this story?
Hell yeah! I am so glad that I did enjoy it and I don't know how will I be able to wait until the next book comes out. I want to read it NOW!

I hope you will enjoy this story too, and if not, don't worry - I've been there already, it doesn't hurt that much, you'll survive :P

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Reading Progress

September 22, 2011 – Shelved
February 29, 2012 – Shelved as: dystopia
March 4, 2012 – Started Reading
March 5, 2012 –
page 40
10.67% ""greens and golds and purples" .. who wouldn't like a guy with purple eyes ;))"
March 5, 2012 –
100.0% "Could someone tell me when did lame Lena from book one become this awesome heroine?"
March 6, 2012 – Shelved as: favorites
March 6, 2012 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-20 of 20) (20 new)

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Sashana Really? The first one a little disappointing. I wasn't even planning to read this one. #reconsidering

Ariana I didn't like the first book either, and the first half of this one was quite slow, but after a while I started to like it a lot. Not sure if it will be the same for you, but I am glad that I didn't give up on this series and I hope the next one will be as good. :)

Sashana I'll give a try, Ari. I'm going to wait it out for a month or two and see if my library buys a copy.

Devyani first of , i love your review .
it's perfect :)
and i am one of those people who cried :P
tee-hee :D

Ariana Thanks, I am glad that you liked it :) and the book too.
I am one of those people that rarely cries reading a book, but I like it when a book makes me feel like crying.. this was not the case for me off course, but at least it kept me entertained. At some point I just couldn't put it down, it was like 4 AM when I finished it and if I had the next one I would have kept reading. I really liked it :)

Devyani Ari wrote: "Thanks, I am glad that you liked it :) and the book too.
I am one of those people that rarely cries reading a book, but I like it when a book makes me feel like crying.. this was not the case for m..."

i understand , especially after THAT ending i definitely want the next one :D

Lis  Carcamo (The Reader L) Best review ever Ari!! I agree with you!

Ariana Thanks Lis, I am really glad that you liked this book as well.
I really can't wait for the next one to come out :D
Oh my, oh my ;))

Deska oh... I Love Julian a loooot! It is definitely better than her story with Alex (sorry, Alex fans.. but no, I am not sorry).. At the end of the book, I just managed a small squeak of "no".. (T_T)o

message 10: by Ariana (last edited Sep 07, 2012 12:52PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ariana As I said, I liked Alex a lot. It is not his fault that I don't like him for with Lena, but the chemistry between Julian and Lena is far better. ;))
...and yeah.. I am not sorry about it either :D

Sarina WOW...It's nice to see a change in your point of view sometimes!
I've just finished(well, 3/4 hours ago) the first book in the series and read your review on the first book for the second time after putting in my review, and decided I didn't care...I was gonna have a talk with you and tell you to give it one more chance, to stick with the story...then I noticed you'd marked up the other books as to-read, I wondered...why? with the first book's 2.5 stars, to Ari, the series isn't supposed to stand a chance! 'Not caring' for the first time in a long time that I'd liked a book that displeased you a lot, I decided to read the plot-summary of the 2nd book and stuff it in my to-read shelf, and I stumbled upon THIS review. Now I'm delighted beyond words.....BUT! am still going to have a "talk" about the first book, as to why you failed to mention there that you decided to continue the series in-spite of everything. It was not pleasant, seeing two different views on the same series in 1 day by Ari, it felt like it could be misleading if I'd read your review first, before starting the first book and decided not to read it at all! Well, I had read your review of the first book once, long ago, and fortunately, I forgot it and started the book without searching a lot about it on Goodreads...
Is it the author's habit to keep everything plain for the first half, then speed everything up and amaze us in the second half? I experienced almost the same thing with the first book...
NOW, I haven't read the SPOILER you put up, but reading your last reply to others' comments has somewhat upset me...
I'm not that upset that Alex gave himself up to make way for Lena's escape, imagine him dead, I can't do it, I can't. I'm not crushing on him or anything, actually, I respect all his actions throughout the first book, but....he can't just die..he needs to be back, for Lena, at least. Anyway, don't answer whether he lives or dies, I'd like to find out myself and deal with the fact.
The thing with "delirium" is, it needs to be explored, not told I have to be careful about what I might accidentally find out get that feeling?

Ariana 1. keep away from spoilers - GR is full of them, and don't read anything about the 3rd book. It might be full of spoilers.

2. I didn't plan on reading the other books in this series.

Maybe you are right, I should say that I did continue with it and it got better (Pandemonium is still my favourite, but I still didn't change my mind about Delirium), as I was so against this story in my first review and maybe other will turn away from it because of me.

The things is that I stumble upon it and I was in a good mood with nothing else to read, so I gave Pandemonium a chance... Anyways, I am glad I did, as you can see that I loved it ;)

So yeah, I'll go update that review now.. Happy? :P

PS: let me know what you think of this sone when you finish it ;)

message 13: by Sarina (last edited Aug 30, 2013 11:17AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sarina Ariana wrote: "So yeah, I'll go update that review now.. Happy? :P"
More than you know...more than I can tell you...more than I can feel...more than.........
I am in a mood today, oh my. I gotta figure out what mood that is, whether it's a sign of "amor deliria nervosa" for the "delirium" series and cure it...;)
1. I will stay away...try very hard not to read other reviews of the 2nd book. Will definitely stay a mile away from even the shadow of the 3rd book and its reviews...
2. I know you didn't...and I'm sorry for lashing at you like that :(
*I will let you know, I'll let the whole world know.....
It's been so long since a book has got me this much riled up!

Ariana It's always great when a book gives you those feelings.
I guess that in this series, the book that did that to me was .. Pandemonium :p
I hope you will enjoy the rest of the series just as much!

Ari, I gotta talk to you. Even though I sent this message to you in another platform, I don't know when you'll go there.....
(Again,other people, SPOILERS BELOW!)
Ari, my whole world is getting crushed.......I wanted Alex to be alive....before Julian won me over....At the end of Pandemonium, all I wanted was...for Alex to never return, even if I respected him in book 1....What is Lena going to do now? What is going to happen to Julian? Alex must be feeling hurt n insides are in turmoils....PLZ HELP!

I can NOT dislike Julian now...not after knowing him , not after seeing Lena fall for him......Ariiiiiiiiiii...........I feel like I'm getting torn to pieces.......

message 16: by Ariana (last edited Sep 02, 2013 12:48AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ariana I think that everyone felt the same, LOL!
We will talk about this after you finish the series, but I can say that I liked both guys (view spoiler)

PS: the tag spoilers work in the comments too, so you can mark that paragraph as spoiler for people not to read it whithout meaning it.

Sarina I can't tag a comment as spoiler, wonder how you do it...
no, not everyone was upset....some people were over the moon when they heard the last three magic words in Pandemonium(you know those).
I wish life worked that way... people change too quickly, never the same, and how much you like them is never a simple thought anymore...

Ariana This is the code: <*spoiler*> ...insert spoiler text here... <*/spoiler*> without the stars. Like in the reviews.

It's funny, because the other day you were so upset with me not loving this series, and now you feel like I did with the first book :p

Well, not funny really - I'm sorry you changed your mind.
And to be honest, I did like those 'magic words'... I just expected something great coming in the next book, but it din't, not like I hoped.

message 19: by Sarina (last edited Sep 03, 2013 08:35AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sarina Thank you for the code.
You think it's funny? It's funny? Yes, it is a cruel way...Even I don't wanna feel like this... Now I see I shouldn't have shouted at you the other day...I feel something breaking inside me everytime I think about this series now...and I haven't even read "Requiem" properly!
Those words would make me smile too...if the characters I thought I understood didn't act/think the way they did in the 3rd book and snatch away my smile! can keep us alive...or eat us away!

Ariana Well, it happens to us to 'love to hate' some characters/stories - sometimes there's more love to it, other times more hate.. I pretty much didn't like the last books I read and I hate it.
I hate love triangles and bad writing and pointless plots and horrible dialog lines - which have nothing to do with this story except for triangle thingy.
And there is always hope - to love a story, to bad it doesn't always holds. Neah, is not me talking, is the disappointment - I want to read a good book. Or maybe I'll watch a movie instead.

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