Wither (The Chemical Garden 1/3) by Lauren DeStefano

Title: Wither

Author: Lauren DeStefano

Published: 22nd March 2011

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing

Genre: Romance,  Fantasy, Mystery, Young Adult

Pages: 358

Format: E-Book

Rating: **** (4 Stars)

About: Sixteen-year-old Rhine Ellery has only four years left to live when she is kidnapped by the Gatherers and forced into a polygamous marriage. Now she has one purpose: to escape, find her twin brother, and go home – before her time runs out forever.

What if you knew you exactly when you would die?

In our brave new future, DNA engineering has resulted in a terrible genetic flaw. Women die at the age of 20, men at 25. Young girls are being abducted and forced to breed in a desperate attempt to keep humanity ahead of the disease that threatens to eradicate it.

16-year-old Rhine Ellery is kidnapped and sold as a bride to Linden, a rich young man with a dying wife. Even though he is kind to her, Rhine is desperate to escape her gilded cage – and Linden’s cruel father. With the help of Gabriel, a servant she is growing dangerously attracted to, Rhine attempts to break free, in what little time she has left.

Review: So I feel like this book has many negative reviews just because of the whole polygamous marriage thing? Firstly, don’t let this upset you, just go into reading this book with an open mind. It isn’t really that big of an issue for this book and it most definitely does not try to think that polygamous marriages are good or bad. It remains neutral in that area.

Besides, I don’t think that Lauren DeStafano really wanted that idea to cause a problem. It was needed for her story idea and it works. Further, this book is for young adults and it remains fairly innocent throughout. The only other problem is that a girl gets pregnant at 13 BUT women die at the age of 20 in the book – so really I don’t see it as an issue (also considering how this is a made up world it kind of fitted with the whole story idea).

Right, now that that’s cleared up let’s begin on what I actually thought of the book.

Firstly, I really loved the story idea. It was clever and it made you think about the world as we are now. Would we feel it our duty to have children if we knew we were to die at such young ages? I found it quite clever really because it did get me thinking about certain things.

Secondly, Rhine is awesome. She knows exactly what she wants and she won’t let anything stop her. She sets a target and she plans to achieve it, no matter what. I loved her for this because she was so headstrong.

She knew exactly what she wanted and I think that that sends a really good message out to people. Considering how Rhine had so many obstacles, she still tackled them by first thinking it through and successfully achieving her end goal. (Even though this is a book trilogy – so it takes a while obviously).

Anyway, there is so much that goes on in this book that it never seems to be dull – but I do feel like that there was so much jam packed into it that it sometimes felt rushed in places, or I would get confused at some points because there was not enough detail and I wouldn’t know how it went from point A to B. This is why I gave this book 4 stars, because I felt like in some places it needed explaining better.

But luckily I’m not really too fazed by that sort of thing and I really did love this book. I mean I read all three within two days quite happily.

This book was a very easy read and it will keep you entertained. Definitely worth a read.

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