Title: Wither (Chemical Garden #1)
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Publication Date: March 22, 2011
Published By: Simon and Schuster Children's Books
Format: Hardcover, 358 pages
*Purchased by me
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 limted time she has left.
Wither is an all around great read, very entertaining, I couldn't put it down. The world that Lauren DeStefano creates is eerie in it's possibility. Why couldn't our world end up like this with all of it's genetic experiments and devastating wars? I started out rooting for Rhine and praying she gets out of the creepy mansion but as the story progresses you can't help but develop a soft spot for Linden. Not to mention her sister wives, and their doting attendants. By the end of the book i was absolutely torn between her sticking it out in the mansion for the sake of poor Linden and running to freedom with Gabriel, it was heartbreaking. Needless to say i'm anxiously awaiting the sequel! Wither get 4 stars out of 5!