I love the fact that the story is told both from Lena's and Hana's point of view, it makes it much better , otherwise it would be too much about the Wilds or too much about the city. Both atmospheres are oppressive in more than one way and it is a relief to switch between them, it is less suffocating for the reader.
There is an evolution in the personality of the main characters as well. Hana, Lena, Julian and Alex are growing , changing and adapting to their new circumstances.
It pains me ,though , to see how much the relationship between Lena and Alex has changed at the beginning of the book.As much as I like Lena I think it is her fault, but I reckon she had no other choice if she wanted to survive.However, I still don't like the feeling that she is using Julian somehow.The heart wants what the heart wants and no matter what how much you try you can't change your feelings, you may be able to change your behaviour but in the end the truth is always revealed .
On the other hand, after reading the novella Hana I was quite disappointed in her. Hana's betrayal was something that changed the course of Lena's life. In Requiem , at the beginning of the book, I had more positive feelings about her, mainly because she was acknowledging what she did out of jealousy and because Fred , her fiance is a punishment nobody deserves.Besides in spite of having gone through the procedure the old Hana (Lena's friend) is still there .
Lauren Oliver makes you reflect on the nature of human beings .If the purpose of the cure is a better society sometimes you may think of it as a lesser evil given the way some people in the Wilds live and struggle to survive, however, dwellers of the city are not much better, they may not suffer because of love but they still have negative feelings and they certainly retain the ability to hurt one another shamelessly.
So, what is the real aim of the procedure? I am afraid it is just a way to exert control over people.Are human beings unable to live peacefully without being controlled and ruled by a government? I am afraid (again) that some of them are , some of them are not and most of them are not willing to intervene to make things better.Good people can do bad things (or nothing which may be worse sometimes)and bad people (once in a blue moon) can do good things.
This is a very deep philosophical discussion and the fact that a YA dystopian novel makes you think about it proves what a skillful writer Lauren Oliver is. I don't like some of the things that happen in the book and I certainly despise many of the characters but the author has given me food for thought.