Sunday, April 10, 2011
The future doesn't look so great.
Wither is the first in the Chemical Garden Trilogy and I have to say the ending of the book makes you want more.
When I heard about this book I really wanted it and I was lucky enough to snag a copy from Amazon's Vine program. This book reminds me of The Handmaid's Tale by Margret Atwood.
In the not so distant future women die at age 20 and men die at 25. Men need wives and girls as young as 13 are kidnapped and married off to rich men for breeding purposes. Rhine is one of the teenagers who are stolen and sold to a rich husband. She is brought to a mansion against her will so she can become a wife to Linden. Rhine has two other sister wives. They are Cecily(age 13) and Jenna.
Housemaster Vaughn desperately searches for a cure that is destroying mankind. He is secretive, he is kinda creepy and he reminds me of Joseph Mengele. When you die, your body becomes his property. Also, when a character is near death he gives them all sorts of strange brews to prolong their life.
Linden, the husband, longs for his sweetheart Rose who dies early in the story. He wants all his wives to love him, and while he does some gross things, the author doesn't make him out to be a bad man. He is a victim of his circumstances.
Rhine wants to escape and find her twin brother in NYC. She has no idea what has happened to him, but she longs to see him again. If she can't find him then she wants to be free.
With the help of a servant, Gabriel, the two create a plan to escape. But can they find their freedom? Or will they die trying?
This book is disturbing and makes the reader think. I enjoyed it, but I have to confess that it was slow in a few places. The idea that we could all die at 20, when our lives are just beginning, is a scary thought. Equally scary is the fact that young girls are kidnapped and sold into marriage.
Teens who are looking for a nice, or disturbing, dystopian story will enjoy this one.