Saturday, August 27, 2011

Wither by Lauren DeStefano

Another dystopian title....but with a really unusual plot.

In the effort to eradicate diseases like cancer, and to extend life expectancy, an unexpected result occurs. While the first generation born after cancer is cured does indeed live longer, something goes drastically wrong with their own offspring and every generation thereafter...males do not live past the age of 25, and females past the age of 20. Because of this, men take multiple wives at young ages in an effort to keep the population up. Girls are sold into polygamist marriages. Rhine is one of these girls.

Rhine is taken from the only home she has ever known, and from her twin brother. She finds herself being wed to a wealthy man, named Linden, along with two other girls, Cecily and Jenna. Jenna is also a reluctant bride, but resigned to her new life - she grew up in an orphanage and then a brothel. Cecily, however, is excited to be a wife and, one day, a mother - at the young age of 13.

Linden is really a very decent man, and is actually in love with Rhine. But Rhine's thoughts are only on escaping and finding her way back to her brother. She forms a friendship with her sister wives, and with a house servant, Gabriel, who she develops feelings for.

Can she escape, despite the watchful eye of Linden's father and Housemaster? Time is ticking...

I really enjoyed this book. However, I felt really bad for Linden, and I actually liked him. He truly cared for Rhine, and treated her very well. I found myself kinda hoping that she would reciprocate his love...but then, that wouldn't make for a very exciting plot, now would it? Can't wait for the sequel, Fever, to come out!


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