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Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy) by…
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Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy) (edition 2011)

by Lauren DeStefano

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1,5592344,699 (3.87)61
Member:liezkl
Title:Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy)
Authors:Lauren DeStefano
Info:Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (2011), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 368 pages
Collections:Read, Your library
Rating:***
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Wither by Lauren DeStefano

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Showing 1-5 of 232 (next | show all)
I was reluctant to read this novel for a while after reading a few mixed reviews. However, I am glad I did - Wither is not perfect, but it does incorporate some of the best elements of fiction and dystopia to create its story. In a futuristic society in which disease has been cured at the cost of men dying at 25 and women at 20, the 16-year-old Rhine is kidnapped to be a sister-wife to a wealthy young man. Good reading, recommended for anyone who enjoys YA dystopian novels! ( )
  wagner.sarah35 | Aug 24, 2014 |
In a world where men die at 25 and women at 20, the latest miracle to humankind turns out to be anything but. There were a few hints but not a whole lot of depth to the world building to give it a dystopian feeling that I was craving. The best parts of it I saw through Rhine's memories alone.

I didn't start off liking Rhine too much, as although the air of the book is depressing and more or less stays that way, I felt that that she could have snuck a few more emotions in between it all. Even if she is kidnapped, imprisoned, forced to marry and eventually bear children, in a house where the fairy tale-like setting is solely upstairs. I also felt the bond between her and Gabriel was just too sparse apart to create the feelings between them that was supposed to be there. The ending left me somewhat unfulfilled as well.

Overall a good read, but certainly not a cheerful one, and I will be looking into the sequel to see where Rhine goes next. ( )
  Musefall | Jul 29, 2014 |
Why did I wait so long to read this book?



Within the first four pages, my jaw was slack and eyes wide and mind stunned with how intense this book began. I mean, if reading those first few pages isn’t enough to grab you right out of the gate, I don’t know what more you’re looking for. Because that was INSANE. (In the very best way.)



Poor Rhine! Stolen away and forced to marry into a polygamous marriage with a complete stranger, leaving her twin brother to wonder what happened to her and imagine the worst. But while she’s essentially being held as a prisoner in the mansion, she does find friends in her sister wives as well as a certain attendant–Gabriel.



Now I do love Rhine and Gabriel’s interaction with each other–I do!



Is it bad that I love Linden?



I know that his wives are all taken by force and ripped away from the lives they had, but throughout the whole book I had the feeling that he had nothing to do with that. And I was right! He’s gentle and caring and with all the time Rhine has to spend with him, I can’t help but fall for him a little bit . . . He’s a product of the sheltered life he’s been raised in and I can’t curse him for that–he’s doing what he can with what he has and what he knows.



The problem is that Linden’s creepy old dad, Housemaster Vaughn, tells him only what he wants Linden to hear. Housemaster Vaughn is the sadistic, evil old gargoyle responsible for the deaths of the girls and experimenting on dead bodies in the hope of finding a cure to the virus that’s killing off all the younger generation. His intention is admirable, being that he wants to find a cure. However, his methods are twisted and creepy and wrong.



Is it bad that his depravity made me love the story more?



Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely hate the guy and he gives me the creeps like none other. But it enhances the story, and I’m the kind of person that thrives on a creepy and chilling plot.



And way to leave me hanging, DeStefano! Good thing I was already prepared and bought all of The Chemical Garden books before I’d even read this one;) I knew this was a book I’d respond to and love. AND, on a semi-related note, if you’re on Twitter and not following @LaurenDeStefano, you’re doing it wrong;)

RATING: 4.5 ( )
  danitronmc | Jun 19, 2014 |
This book has just driven me nuts in the most polite way.

The ending felt..sort of abrupt. I don't know why. And I just can't get past the fact that she never just..told Linden about her life. About the truth. About the fact that Rhine had a brother, that Jenna's sisters were murdered, that all the girls were kidnapped and the rejects were discarded. I can't get past the fact that if he'd just known the reality that he would have made changes. That he'd have been horrified. And there was really no reason NOT to tell him. Vaughn couldn't have done anything about it once Linden knew. And that really, really bothers me. And the book took way too much suspension of disbelief -- so she's first wife but they've never consummated? O.o Really? And no details about the virus at all.

Calling this A Handmaid's Tale for kids is a good comparison, but A Handmaid's Tale took very little suspension of disbelief -- that's what made it so frightening. This was just frustrating.
( )
  lyrrael | May 18, 2014 |
I wasn't, initially, terribly interested in reading this book, because: polygamy? Really? I just wasn't feeling it. But after beginning two other books that were pretty miserably written, I decided to give Wither a try.

It's actually shockingly good. I found myself completely sucked in to De Stephano's world. The fact that Rhine's been kidnapped helps, from a reader's point of view, enormously. We have time to warm up to the whole concept, without having to swallow the notion that any woman would be overjoyed at the idea of sharing her husband.

Regarding the writing, it's clean (both language and style-wise), intelligent, emotional without being cloying, and full of rich description. DeStephano doesn't leave me with that feeling some YA authors do: that she's simply trying too hard.

Above all, Wither is interesting. There were a few small plot points I wanted explained, and having begun book 2, I can see that we're headed there already. I'm satisfied.


More and other reviews on fefferbooks.com! ( )
  fefferbooks | May 12, 2014 |
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Epigraph
This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang. But a whimper. ~T.S. Eliot, "The Hollow Men"
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For my dad, who turned to me and said, "one day kid, you'll do great things."
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I wait.  They keep us in the dark so long that we lose sense of our eyelids.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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After modern science turns every human into a genetic time bomb with men dying at age twenty-five and women dying at age twenty, girls are kidnapped and married off in order to repopulate the world.

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