Wither (The Chemical Garde, #1) by Lauren DeStefano
Publication Date: February 16th, 2012
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Bought it
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.
This is one of those books that I had seen in so many blogs that when I finally got my hands on it I just couldn't wait to read it! And I was not disappointed!
The plot in the beggining is already interesting enough to keep you intrigued and to get your attention but as soon as the story starts to unfold there are so many secrets and so many new questions (some of them which I guess are answered in the next books).
The world-building was quite amazing and it managed to create a believable futuristic society with elements from our time and elements from the future (things like holograms, for example). On top of that the descriptions of everything, from the gowns to the gardens were beautiful and realistic.
I think the pacing was good, not too fast and not too slow, with enough setback's on the main character's plans without dragging the story too long. Although I was really excited to see what would happen so at the time I might have wanted things to move quicker...looking back, I realize they happened at the right speed to be believable!
Now, my favourite part: the characters! I think they were wonderfully constructed and even the secondary characters had depth and different back stories that explained their actions (somewhat). I loved Rhine as a main character but sometimes I had to keep in mind that she was only 16, so making rash decisions was normal. She wasn't, by all means, the girl in the horror movie who runs upstairs or anything like that but she did get herself in some tricky situations because she didn't stopt to THINK first (in her place I would probably act the same way, but still, to an outside observant...)
Basically, this was a wonderful way to start my reading pile this year (yes, this is the first book I've read, school sucks!) and I can't wait to read Fever!
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