Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wither by Lauren DeStefano

Title: Wither
Author:  Lauren DeStefano
Pages: 358
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
My rating: 3.7 stars
Goodreads rating: 3.91 stars
Published: March 22, 2011


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 limited time she has left.

I love Rhine.  That being said, this book could have been better.  It didn't take very long to read this {about two sittings}, and it just wasn't that in-depth.  It focuses on Rhine's desire to escape, but that's about it.  Its kind of hard to believe she's 16-years-old in this book, just because she's a sister wife {not to mention that Cecily, one of her sister wives, is only 13-years-old at the beginning of the book}, and I understand part of the reasoning for this is because they live in a time when they have to grow up fast, because they just don't have time... but there are also the "first generations" {the only people who are actually able to live above 20 and 25}, which makes one wonder how they would become so distant from what it was like to live more than a handful of years when there are people on the planet who are 50+ years old.

From the description, anyone could tell this book has some polygamy {okay, a lot}, but it isn't graphic with the ideas of that.  It mostly focuses on the sisterly relationship Rhine has with {mainly} Jenna and {kind of} Cecily.

Other than the fact that this book was seriously anticlimactic, I was really frustrated with how wishy-washy Rhine was.  She either hated the house Governor or was falling for him, which was kind of confusing to go on that roller coaster as a reader and made it difficult to really know what to feel towards him {*SPOILER - highlight to read* who we later find out had no idea she was kidnapped and actually made me, as a reader, feel kind of sorry for him and like Rhine should have been trying to help him escape too}.  And, the servant she is said to be "growing dangerously attracted to"?  For almost half the book {the last half, mind you}, you don't really see any of that.  Just her concern for him to have his freedom from the mansion they're trapped in as well as her.

I don't know if its just that, about halfway through, I just kept reading the book so I could say I finished it and cross it off my list or if the author just stopped caring about the book, but it was probably one of the lamest books I've read in a while {yes, I'm using the word "lamest", because their is no better description for it}.   I've read books with endings I didn't like or weren't very well written, but this one was just all around lame.  I love my books, and I'm a bit of a hoarder, but, if I'd bought this, I would actually give it away.  To the Goodwill.  Or sell it on Amazon for a dollar.  All that being said, I think it might be a tie with Halo by Alexandra Adornetto {next review to be written} for where it ranked on my "recommend to someone else" list.

This was one of those books that, after picking it up and reading, I really felt like I would have been better off if I hadn't.  Because its a trilogy.  And now I actually do want to know if they find a cure for this genetic mutation that shows itself as a virus when the individuals turn 20 and 25, respectively.  And, most likely, in the time between when these come out, I probably will have forgotten about it and not really care.  Thank goodness the copy I got of this one was free...

PS - Doesn't the girl on the cover look like Mandy Moore??

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