Author: Lauren DeStefano
Date Released: March 22nd, 2011
Rating: 4 out of 5
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.
Wither was a really intriguing, and a somewhat sad debut from debut author Lauren DeStefano. Like most dystopians, you can hardly imagine our world turning into a world like theirs. In this case, people die at very young ages, 25 for males, and 21 for females. Their world is a lot harsher, with orphans starving in the street and a fear for the people’s own safety, especially the girls because these people called the Gatherers come and kidnap them and take them to meet their future husbands. In this case, the victim is Rhine, who has been kidnapped along with two other girls by the Gatherers and all three of them are forced to marry Linden.
I really liked the idea of Wither and it was definitely really interesting reading about such a scary future. Wither earns tons of stars for originality because the whole idea of people being basically a “ticking genetic time bomb” is just very unique and different.
Wither basically revolves around one problem; Rhine is trying to escape this luxurious but limiting mansion for freedom. It’s no easy task because of the advanced technology and surveillance that Rhine and her sister wives are under. DeStefano keeps everything captivating by adding in little bits and pieces of how Rhine could get out of there, but at times, it could get a little slow.
DeStefano’s writing was beautiful, too, almost like that of Ally Condie’s writing when she wrote Matched. It had a melancholy feeling that matched Rhine’s voice and set the whole atmosphere of the book.
I really liked all the characters, too. Rhine was very strong protagonist that I really loved and admired her strength. Her sister wives, Cecily and Jenna, were also very strong as well to be able to go through what they had gone through all together. I really liked Gabriel, Rhine’s love interest, but it sort of felt like he was just there, but I hope that in the next book he appears more often. I really had no sympathy for Linden’s father Vaughn because he was a horrible man. Even though I didn’t like Linden that much, I still felt bad for him because … well all I’ll say is that his father is evil.
Wither was a really great debut that was really captivating with a really original and interesting idea. Some parts of the book got a little boring, but the rest was great. I think that anyone would really like it if they like the whole dystopian genre. I'll definitely be looking forward to the next one!
This is a gorgeous cover! It sets the mood for the book, especially with the model looking very somber and sad.
*Description from Goodreads.com
**Review copy purchased.