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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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1,9692643,446 (3.8)66
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 262 (next | show all)
I have read this whole trilogy. I enjoy when a writer writes so well they draw you into their world. It's not hard to feel the desolation of being sixteen like Rhine and knowing you'll be dead by the age of twenty. Even in the light of day the tone is dark with more than a hint of sinister. Children having children because that's all there is left. The scene in the truck is devastating. It made me gasp at the disregard for life. The ending was bittersweet. There was one character I kind of wish had made it. ( )
  nevong | Jul 5, 2017 |
Oh my word, I am so sad that I am finished reading “Wither.” After trudging through so many dystopian novels in a row and finding myself repeatedly disappointed, I was very hesitant when it came to reading this book. However, as shallow as it may sound, I just knew a story with such a fantastic cover and such an interesting premise has to be somewhat worthwhile, right?

Initially I did not really enjoy the novel probably because I was so tired of such pessimistic outlooks on what the future holds. Seriously, it’s depressing. Can someone please write something optimistic? Furthermore I found the introduction to be slightly confusing. In fact I think I repeatedly found myself muttering the following, “What the heck just happened?” and “Wait, what?” Just as I was ready to chalk this up to another fail, Gabriel walked in and completely saved the day.

Now I am not the type of girl who swoons over fictional characters and I am in no way swooning over Gabriel. However, I may be slightly crushing on the idea of him. . . just a teeny tiny bit. Ack, enough of that. Maybe it has more to do with the situation Rhine and Gabriel are in. Nothing is better than a little forbidden love.

This story is absolutely enjoyable. To be perfectly honest I could hardly put it down. I think what I loved most about this novel is that it explores the question I have often asked myself; what would you do with your life if you knew exactly when you would die? The sucky part is that so many curveballs lie smack dab in between Rhine living her short life to the fullest. I’m excited to see what she does with the time she has left.
( )
  Emma_Manolis | Jun 27, 2017 |
I was first attracted to this book because of the cover. After seeing the blurb, I knew I wanted to read it. It has an original spin on the zompoc genre. I believe Wither has the basis for a great story, but it didn't make it there for me. I was unable to understand the cause and effect of situations, behaviors, attitudes, etc. The things the characters did just didn't make any sense to me. I think this is one of those books that will produce very varied opinions so you may want to check it out for yourself.

***copy given in exchange for an honest review*** ( )
  ToniFGMAMTC | Jan 19, 2017 |
This came out during the dystopia hype (which actually might still be going on, but anyway), so I didn’t really have any high hopes for how good it would be — I tend to be cautious towards really popular books, since I’ve been burned a few times by following the hype. :p However, even years later, it still seemed interesting to me, so I decided to at least skim it and see what it was about before outright deciding not to read it.

I have to say, Wither is a lot better than I expected it to be. I think there are a few logical holes as to how a society like this would have developed from the problem of short lifespans, but that aside, it’s actually quite a well thought out story about a girl in a desperate situation who tries to win back her freedom. The story itself dragged a bit, but I’m chalking that up to it being the first of a series and hopefully now that the worldbuilding is done, we can get into some really in-depth, complex looks at the characters and the society they live in within the next books of the series.

On the bright side however, the characters are well done and I loved learning more about them and learning how their lives fit into this strange world as a whole, and what their attitudes said about the world they’re living in. I also thought that DeStefano did an amazing job portraying Rhine’s internal conflict, where she needed to show that she was buying into her new life in order to win her freedom, but then felt guilty for maybe buying into it a little too much. Very, very well done on those counts.

While it’s not on a must-read list or even a definitely recommend list, it is interesting and I definitely want to make a point to read the sequels to see how this series turns out. If it sounds good to you, then I will say that I enjoyed myself, so maybe you will too.

Originally posted on Going on to the Next . ( )
  sedelia | Aug 11, 2016 |
This was one of the books on my Goodreads suggestions list. All it had to tell me was that it was dystopian, had polygamy, and dealt with kidnapping and stockholm syndrome and I was sold!

Rhine is a sixteen year old girl in Manhattan who lives in a world where science has screwed up and has made it so girls only live till they're twenty and boys until they are twenty-five. Rhine's parents were working on a cure when they were murdered in a terrorist attack and she was left alone with her twin brother Rowan. They take turns sleeping each night to protect their home and each other from thieves and the "Gatherers" who round up young girls to be sold into prostitution and sexual slavery as brides to rich men.
Rhine ends up getting "gathered" with a bunch of other girls and forced to marry Linden. a wealthy governor in Florida, along with two other girls. Far from everything she knows and love she decides that she must escape and return home to her brother. But escape seems futile because the brides are watched and restricted to certain areas of the mansion that is impossible to escape. Her only way out is to make Linden fall in love with her so he will make her the First Wife. First Wives are the favorites of their husbands and get more privileges and freedom than her sister wives. Rhine achieves this goal and attends parties and events with Linden all the while determined to escape with the servant Gabriel whom she has fallen in love with.

This book was good for the first book in the series. I enjoyed the feel of this decaying society clinging to the hope of a cure and the disenchanted older generation that due to science are near immortal and all major illnesses have been done away with. Rhine doesn't feel like a sixteen year old to me but that is easily explained by the world she lives in and the death of her parents. Her sister wives can get a little annoying (especially Cecily but she's like fourteen). That also bothered me a lot. Linden's underaged wife. She's fourteen! Hardly at an age where she can give consent and know the consequences of her actions. She feels like a kid playing house the entirety of the book.
All in all it was an enjoyable book I look forward to the rest of the series because this book has so much potential.

Predictions for the rest of the series: Because Rhine and Rowen have heterochromia (two different eye colors) and because their parents were some big wig scientists I think we're going to find out that Rhine and Rowan are the key to the cure (or are test tube babies/clones and will age and live normally). Rhine will end up with Gabriel (though I would not entirely mind if she ended up with Linden) and Linden's father will be killed by one of his horrible experiments. ( )
  oxlabyrinthxo | Jul 10, 2016 |
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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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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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