In Lauren DeStefano's debut novel she introduces the world she's created with a bang. It's a unique concept in the dystopian setting and one that I couldn't wait to get my hands on.
Rhine lives in a United States where after experiments to end sickness and diseases saved one generation, it began killing the next. Girls die at age 20 and boys at age 25. And in an attempt to keep the human race going, the men who can afford it take on multiple wives so they can have children.
That is how Rhine ended up in Florida with her new husband Linden. And even though she's been given everything she could possibly want, including safety and stability, all Rhine can think about is how she can get back to her twin brother in New York. But in order to even consider that, she has to gain the trust and favor of her husband over her two sister wives.
First of all, let me just say that I fell in love with the cover for this book. It's absolutely beautiful and what first drew me in to want to read it. And, with that in mind, when I first began reading Wither I wasn't really sure how I felt about it. The premise that Lauren came up with was very intriguing and I knew that it would be a great read, but the more I continued with the story the more uncomfortable I got. It freaked me out that instead of it being the big bad government doing it, the "bad guys" so to speak were individual people in hopes of finding a cure.
And that's when I realized that was the point.
Wither was about an uncomfortable situation forced upon Rhine and we got to see how she dealt with it. I loved that even though she developed a bond with her sister wives and even with Linden, her heart was always with her twin brother and how to return with him. And even though it was obvious that Rhine began to care for Linden, too, she felt a stronger connection with one of the staff boys Gabriel. The development of each of the relationships was done just right.
Lauren complete me sucked me in with the story and I am anxious for the next in the trilogy, Fever. Rhine's voice was strong and unwavering. She knew what she wanted and wasn't going to change her mind in getting it.
The only question I have now is: what else can possibly happen next? It seemed like so much happened in this first part, I can't even fathom what else Lauren will have up her sleeve for the second and third books.