Friday, August 9, 2013

Wither by Lauren DeStefano (DNF)

Title: Wither

Author: Lauren DeStefano

Book #: 1st of Trilogy

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Publish Date: March 22nd 2011

Pages: 358

Format: Hardcover

Date Read: August 2nd 2013

Rating / out of 5

The man in white says, "What fate has brought together, let no man tear asunder."
Fate, I think, is a thief.


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. 

When Rhine is kidnapped and sold as a bride, she vows to do all she can to escape. Will Rhine be able to escape--before her time runs out? In a world that continues to spiral into anarchy, is there any hope for freedom?


I think this book had a dark idea behind it that, if done properly, would have been more fit for a new-adult novel. Instead, it was washed down and labeled as young-adult and in doing so opened holes in it's logic that I couldn't ignore. 

This argument is brought up by many reviewers and it shouldn't be hard to find their opinions on the matter.

In a world where the world... really doesn't exist except for America (which didn't make any sense) and people only live to age 25 for men and 20 for women, keeping the population going is the main priority. 

But.. it didn't feel like it. What this world seemed like was basically a world in which the government fell to shambles and trafficking blew up to disturbing proportions. If people were so desperate to keep the population going, why were they so picky as to finding girls who were pretty and pleasing aesthetically and killing of the ones that weren't? Shouldn't (what's left of) the government be controlling the population through mandatory coupling and reproducing?

This concept of "repopulating" was pulled off much better inEve by Anna Carey. In her post-apocalyptic world, in order to keep the population going the new government sets up birthing houses where young girls are groomed to give birth and young women are strapped to beds and injected with sperm so they produce baby after baby until they are no longer capable. 

Dark, yes, but more realistic if your goal is to keep the population from dying out. Which, is what the case is supposed to be in Wither.

There is also the fact that the whole entire world is destroyed and underwater except America? I didn't really understand the explanations of what happened to the world in this story's past.


Other than that, I liked Rhine's feverish attitude to escape, Gabriel's kind-hearted playfulness, and Rose and Linden's love and passion. Besides that, nothing else really stood out to me in this book.

Overall, despite the holes in the logic behind this story, I couldn't help but give it a 2 star rating because I admired Rhine's determination.

I don't know if I would recommend this, though. 


I think, in this strange world of beautiful things, there may be some humanity after all.

"I mean a game game." She looks to me for help, but the only game I know is the one where my brother and I set noise traps in the kitchen and try to survive the night intact. And when I was taken by Gatherers, I sort of lost.

But now and eerie silence fills the floor. It's the silence I imagine in the rest of the world, the silence of an endless ocean and uninhabitable islands, a silence that can be seen from space.

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