Wither Review

Mar 26, 2011 | Book Reviews | 0 comments

Header Stars
Wither ReviewWither by Lauren DeStefano
Series: The Chemical Garden #1
Genres: Dystopian, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Published by Simon & Schuster, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers on March 22, 2011
Pages: 358
Format: eARC
Source: Simon & Schuster Galley Grab Program
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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

Literary's Views


Wither was such a captivating read for me. There was so many different emotions that the story invoked that at the end I felt like I’d gone on a journey instead of just reading about one. In a future world filled with a devastated environment with half of the world being wiped out and a deadly virus that shorten the human life span to 25 for males, 20 for females, Rhine finds herself as well as the whole female population lowered down to nothing more than prize positions to the highest bidder to become a breeder or a bride.

Fighting for a semblance of a normal life with her brother, Rhine life changes forever when she is captured and becomes one wife to a wealthy man living in a mansion far from home where she has to navigate the polygamous life style she’s been forced into while plotting an escape that could end in her being killed. 

It hurt my heart to read the cruelty that Rhine and her sister wives had to go through. Several scenes had me wanting to scream in anger and frustration. I wondered if I lived in their world, would I have had the strength and cunningness to deal with what they had to deal with. I enjoyed being pulled into their world and watch how they had to navigate the mental mind field that was their lives.

Each girl had strength and though the story was told through Rhine’s eyes I was still able to connect in some way to each of them and how they interacted and affected Rhine’s world.

DeStefano was able to pull my emotions into the story, making me feel for the characters whether it was happiness, pride, hate, or sadness. How one moment I felt a certain way about a character like hatred for Linden in the beginning but as the story unfolded my feelings morphed and changed to sadness and pity for him.

I would have liked to know more about Gabriel and his story. There seemed so much more to him then was told. And I would have liked more stolen moments between him and Rhine. The end really didn’t feel like an ending to me but a beginning full of possibilities for a continuation of the story.

Wither by Lauren DeStefano deals with serious issues like love, death, sex, freedom, in a great way that leaves me compelled to read on and see what would happen to these characters. I enjoyed reading Rhine’s story and to go on the emotional roller-coaster that DeStefano lead me on. Reads looking for a deeply compelling, thought proving tale that you can’t help but to feel should defiantly give Wither a read.


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