Wither by Lauren DeStefano

Details: Hardcover, 356 pgs
Published: March 22nd, 2011 by Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing
isbn: 1442409053 (ISBN13: 9781442409057)
Series: Chemical Garden #1
Reading Level: Young Adult
Received from: Borrowed from my lovely friend Lori, then got a copy from publisher for review as well.

What if you knew exactly when you would die?

Thanks to modern science, every human being has become a ticking genetic time bomb—males only live to age twenty-five, and females only live to age twenty. In this bleak landscape, young girls are kidnapped and forced into polygamous marriages to keep the population from dying out.

When sixteen-year-old Rhine Ellery is taken by the Gatherers to become a bride, she enters a world of wealth and privilege. Despite her husband Linden’s genuine love for her, and a tenuous trust among her sister wives, Rhine has one purpose: to escape—to find her twin brother and go home.

But Rhine has more to contend with than losing her freedom. Linden’s eccentric father is bent on finding an antidote to the genetic virus that is getting closer to taking his son, even if it means collecting corpses in order to test his experiments. With the help of Gabriel, a servant Rhine is growing dangerously attracted to, Rhine attempts to break free, in the limted time she has left.

My Thoughts:
I’ve recently become quite a fan of dystopia books.  They are emotional and they make you think.  Because so much of the time that could happen.  And Wither was absolutely what I look for in dystopia.  The world seemed real and what really could happen.  Science does seem like it’s getting out of hand.  One thing that I thought was maybe a bit less realistic is that girls die when they are 20 and boys die when they are 25.  It seems a bit far fetched that they would die exactly at that age.   I could understand if they said around 20 and 25, but it seems that only weeks after they turn 20 and 25 they die.  Other then that little issue I found it quite realistic.  It was a bit hard to grasp the world they lived in because Rhine was locked in a house almost the entire time.  We hear things from her past, and she has brief outing’s, but it just was hard to understand how the world really worked.   I definitely think we’ll be getting much more of it in the future though, and I can’t wait!
I LOVED the characters!  I thought they were all brilliantly thought up and had amazing personalities and character flaws.  They were all interesting and not at all boring.  I loved that Rhine used her brain most of the time and wasn’t constantly making horrible decisions.  And I loved that she saw the good in most everybody.  The relationships she developed with her sister wives and her husband as well as the others in the house seemed real.  Things still took twists and turns though and you didn’t know what was going to happen.
This book was a bit different.  I felt like not a lot was happening in the book but yet I never felt bored with it.  I guess the daily goings on were just interesting enough for me or something.  It really was easy to pick up and keep reading.  

We only got a touch of romance but I was a bit sad that I didn’t really feel the sexual tension that should have been going on.  It just wasn’t quite there.  However I wasn’t exactly disappointed either.  And I think in the future books we’ll see much more of it.

One thing that I hate is cliffhangers.  When you have over a year to wait for the next book a cliffhanger just plain makes me mad.  This one leaves off quite well.  There’s so much to happen but at least we aren’t thinking – Oh, is so and so even alive?!  (Do you know what book I’m talking about? LOL)  I’m definitely anxious for the next book.  And I LOVE this cover!  I think I’ll buy this one for the cover alone!  Although I’ll probably be ready for a reread by the time the next book comes out.

You can find Lauren DeSteano on her website  | Twitter |  

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Disclosure: I was loaned this book for review purposes.  I was not paid or influenced in any way.  All opinions expressed are my own.

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  1. I’m loving the dystopia too. It’s really an up and coming genre and great to read. Great for thinking and great for discussion. Especially since some dystopian books don’t seem too far off the mark. It’s kind of scary to think about, but it’s nice that if (god forbid) something like a dystopian novel happened for real, that maybe all us readers would be a LITTLE bit prepared lol!

    I haven’t read this one yet, but Lauren is auctioning off one Wither book on eBay each day of March and I was the highest bidder for the one that ended today, so I get to have a signed book and she’s donating all the money to a local pet shelter, which I think is really cool. Just a heads up for everyone if you’re interested in helping our furry friends and getting a signed copy of this book early!

  2. Great characters usually means an enjoyable novel to me. That said, cliffhangers drive me crazy. I really dislike not feeling settled with characters so I’m glad this one isn’t that way. Thanks for the great review!

  3. I’ve been addicted to review on Wither to compare thoughts. I felt the same, like not a lot was happening.

    And I totally know what you mean about being left to wonder.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  4. Wonderful Review, although this book didn’t do it for me. I had the boggest issue with the lack of hope and the romance was just not developed. But, I’m glad you enjoyed it so much :)

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