Friday, July 20, 2012

Wither by Lauren DeStefano

The Synopsis:
By age sixteen, Rhine Ellery has four years left to live. She can thank modern science for this genetic time bomb. A botched effort to create a perfect race has left all males with a lifespan of 25 years, and females with a lifespan of 20 years. Geneticists are seeking a miracle antidote to restore the human race, desperate orphans crowd the population, crime and poverty have skyrocketed, and young girls are being kidnapped and sold as polygamous brides to bear more children. When Rhine is kidnapped and sold as a bride, she vows to do all she can to escape. Her husband, Linden, is hopelessly in love with her, and Rhine can’t bring herself to hate him as much as she’d like to. He opens her to a magical world of wealth and illusion she never thought existed, and it almost makes it possible to ignore the clock ticking away her short life. But Rhine quickly learns that not everything in her new husband’s strange world is what it seems. Her father-in-law, an eccentric doctor bent on finding the antidote, is hoarding corpses in the basement. Her fellow sister wives are to be trusted one day and feared the next, and Rhine is desperate to communicate to her twin brother that she is safe and alive. Will Rhine be able to escape--before her time runs out?Together with one of Linden's servants, Gabriel, Rhine attempts to escape just before her seventeenth birthday. But in a world that continues to spiral into anarchy, is there any hope for freedom?

My Thoughts:
This was one of those books where I was interested in it, but I kept on pushing it back on my TBR list because other books grabbed my interest.  It sounded cool enough, but then yet again, I wasn't that interested in dystopian at the time.  But things have changed, so I decided it was time to read this book and see what it was all about.
Rhine was your typical YA heroine.  She's accepted the fact that she's going to die in four years and she's used to the idea that she has to do certain things to survive.  She's used to the grime and the crime (seriously, no rhyme was intended here) that this futuristic world has to offer.  So when she's swept away from her brother and is sent off to live with this rich man named Linden, she does not have this.  She will not allow it.  She was strong willed and optimistic, which I really liked about her personality.
And then she falls in love with the house servant, Gabriel.  Okay, things are kind of fine and dandy until Rhine puts all her faith in this boy she barely knows.  I understand that it's kind of against the rules for any of the house wives to have an affair with one of the servants, but I didn't really feel any connection between Rhine and Gabriel.  Barely a spark.  And for some reason, I wanted some romance in here.  I mean, she does have this thing for Gabriel, but it's barely there and I wasn't feeling much with it.
Then there was Linden.  I can kind of understand where he's the sick and perverted kind of villain dude that picked three random girls to be his wives.  I think I would have wanted to bash in his head if it were me as one of the sister wives.  How could you ever love a man like him?  But then, Rhine and the other sister wives get to see who he really is, and honestly, I didn't find him to be that bad.  Yes, he was a bit of a wimp, definitely not the kind of strong and intelligent guys I usually read about, but he had a certain charm to him, and I preferred him over Gabriel.  And I don't exactly understand why.  It goes against all moral beliefs in society today to have more than one wife, so I'm not sure I was wishing Rhine would stay instead of want to escape the mansion.
Someone please tell me there is nothing wrong with me.
Story-wise, I thought it fell kind of flat for me.  Besides Rhine being a very strong character personality wise, she definitely wasn't strong in any other departments.  I didn't feel anything from her.  When I thought she would speak up and say something, she said nothing instead, and she also made infuriating mistakes that would almost get her in trouble. 
In all, this was nothing like I expected it to be.  The story has a lot of potential to it.  Lots and lots of potential, but I feel as if that potential wasn't used to the highest amount that Lauren could have used it.  Overall, I gave Wither three out of five stars from me.  I'm going to read the next book in the series, Fever, soon, but I can wait for it.  I'm curious to see what will happen next and see how it all plays out.  I'm hoping, just like Kelley Armstrong, that the second book will be a step up from the first.
I feel as if many other people have really enjoyed this book, so I kind of feel like the odd man out.  So, maybe you should check with other reviews before you decide whether or not you want to read Wither.  I don't want to prevent people to read this book because this is just my opinion out of many.  Just take this into consideration before you decide whether or not you are going to read this book, please!

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