September 21, 2013

Review: Delirium (Debt Collector #1) by Susan Kaye Quinn

Title: Delirium (Debt Collector #1)
Author: Susan Kaye Quinn
Publication date: March 20th 2013
Pages: 48
Genre: New Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Source: Publisher through Netgalley

~ Synopsis ~
What’s your life worth on the open market?
A debt collector can tell you precisely.

Season One now complete!

Lirium plays the part of the grim reaper well, with his dark trenchcoat, jackboots, and the black marks on his soul that every debt collector carries. He’s just in it for his cut, the ten percent of the life energy he collects before he transfers it on to the high potentials, the people who will make the world a better place with their brains, their work, and their lives. That hit of life energy, a bottle of vodka, and a visit from one of Madam Anastazja’s sex workers keep him alive, stable, and mostly sane… until he collects again. But when his recovery ritual is disrupted by a sex worker who isn’t what she seems, he has to choose between doing an illegal hit for a girl whose story has more holes than his soul or facing the bottle alone—a dark pit he’s not sure he’ll be able to climb out of again.

Contains mature content and themes.

Delirium is approximately 12,000 words or 48 pages, and is one of nine episodes in the first season of The Debt Collector serial. This dark and gritty future-noir is about a world where your life-worth is tabulated on the open market and going into debt risks a lot more than your credit rating. For more about the Debt Collector serial, see

“The street-smart science of LOOPER meets the cold, just-the-facts voice of DOUBLE INDEMNITY in this edgy, future-noir thriller that will have you holding your breath, looking over your shoulder, and begging for more.” —Leigh Talbert Moore, author of The Truth About Faking, The Truth About Letting Go, and Rouge

“Do you owe more than your life is worth? No worries. A more deserving person than you can benefit from that excess life—and someone else will get paid with it. Enter the Debt Collector.” —Dianne Salerni, author of We Hear the Dead, The Caged Graves, and The Eighth Day(HarperCollins 2014)

~ My Thoughts ~

My Rating: 5 / 5 

I'm really excited about this series. In a way I'm reminded of the movie A.I. because Delirium takes place in a futuristic world with technology that seems to have outstripped what society is ready for. This seems to be the beginning of a series where anything is possible. There could be androids! Well, I'm hoping there will be androids at some point. ;)

The main character, Lirium, works for the government's Debt Collector Agency, collecting souls from people who only have a short time to live and who have racked up too much "debt" - medical bills, taxes, credit cards, etc. The problem is that if the doctors are wrong about how much time a person has left to live, the collector collects the soul anyway. Basically this process is supposed to get rid of people who are no longer productive in society and give their life force to someone who is at the height of his or her productivity. 

I was pulled in right away, and I really like the way Delirium makes me think about the implications of this system. It's horrific really - if I only had six weeks to live right now, my soul would be collected today. I have so much student debt it's ridiculous, not to mention I still owe on my car and my house... I would love to know more about this world. How was this system devised? Who came up with it? When did it start? 

Lirium is complicated with many layers to his personality, and I'm eager to peel back those layers. He seems bitter and disenchanted with the world, but he is doing a job that is depressing. He doesn't seem to really live until he's collected a soul and gets his cut. Collecting souls is like a drug for the collectors. They can keep a certain percentage before turning the rest in, and they feel like they're "high." Lirium only lives for those highs, but once he meets a new sex worker from Madam Anastazja, a different side of him is revealed once he realizes this girl isn't quite who she claims to be. 

This leaves you wanting more, to read the next episode right away. At this time, I haven't read beyond this first episode, but I've bought the entire season. I recommend you have the entire season to read each episode back to back. With the way this first episode ends, you'll definitely be ready for the rest immediately!

EPISODE LIST - add them to your TBR!
Delirium - Debt Collector 1
Agony - Debt Collector 2
Ecstasy - Debt Collector 3
Broken - Debt Collector 4
Driven - Debt Collector 5
Fallen - Debt Collector 6
Promise - Debt Collector 7
Ruthless - Debt Collector 8
Passion - Debt Collector 9

or add the collections

Debt Collector (Vol 1-3) - Delirium, Agony, Ecstasy
Debt Collector (Vol 4-6) - Broken, Driven, Fallen
Debt Collector (Vol 7-9) - Promise, Ruthless, Passion
Debt Collector Season One - in EBOOK AND PRINT

Episode 1 is free on Amazon as of this posting. Click here to grab your copy! 

~ Purchase Links ~ 

~ Meet the Author: Susan Kaye Quinn! ~

Susan Kaye Quinn grew up in California, where she wrote snippets of stories and passed them to her friends during class. Her teachers pretended not to notice and only confiscated her stories a couple times.

Susan left writing behind to pursue a bunch of engineering degrees, but she was drawn back to writing by an irresistible urge to share her stories with her niece, her kids, and all the wonderful friends she’s met along the way.

She doesn’t have to sneak her notes anymore, which is too bad.

Susan writes from the Chicago suburbs with her three boys, two cats, and one husband. Which, it turns out, is exactly as much as she can handle.

~ Author Links ~
Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook


  1. Oh I'm glad you reviewed this favourably. I have these on my Kindle ready to read. Now I'm eager to get to them. :)

    1. I'm ready to read the next one! I just need to find the time, lol. Thanks for stopping by, Shah! :)

  2. This sounds fantastic, Jennifer! I love reaper stories and this seems a unique spin on that theme. And I'm glad to know they're all available - I have trouble with serials because I don't like to wait! LOL Great review! :)

    1. I don't like to wait either, lol! I'm so glad I have the whole first season 'cause I'm reading this as soon as I can! The first episode was a quick, intense read and makes me look forward to the rest. Thank you, Brandee! :D


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