What if you knew exactly when you would die?
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 limited time she has left.
Imagine knowing the exact age when you will die. Imagine knowing that no matter what you do, where you go, you're days are numbered and your fate is chosen. When Rhine is kidnapped and ripped from the only family she has left, her brother, she is devastated. Forced to marry a man she doesn't even know, and live as a sister wife in a mansion, Rhine is beside herself. Every day she thinks of her twin brother Rowan, and how she can escape and find him again. Though is is not treated badly, and even has her own servants, Rhine is like a caged bird. Her husband Linden is kind and favors her over his other two wives, but this is not the life she wants to be living. While she accepts the fact that she will die at the age of twenty, she does not want to spend her last years in that place.
As the days pass and Rhine continues to dream of getting away, she is also fighting her feelings for Gabriel, a boy that works in the mansion and serves her food. Knowing that if anyone especially her husband or father in-law found out the consequences would be grand, Rhine can't help but wonder what would happen if she and Gabriel could run away and never look back...
Wither is filled with intrigue, suspicion, and most importantly love. Its the kind of book where you can easily put yourself in the heroine's position, and ponder what you would do if you were her. Should Rhine accept the life she now has or should she do everything in her power to break free?
I enjoyed this book a great deal. Lately I'm really into the stories where the main character is told how to live and who to love, but they rebel because they want to choose for themselves. Love is not something that can be forced upon you. We all have the right to be what we want to be and love who we want to love. So anytime I come across a book where the plot is a controlled society, or a controlled life, I have to pick it up. When someone is fighting like crazy to keep their free will and create their own destiny, I just get goosebumps!
To anyone who hasn't read it, I truly suggest you do. Lauren DeStefano...I applaud you!