I'm going to do a short summary here, NO SPOILERS.
We're following a 16-year-old girl Rhine Ellery, in a world where females live exactly 20 years and males 25 years. Rhine is taken by 'Gatherers', who kidnap teenage girls from streets and sell them to wives for rich men. Many males take multiple wives and keep them locked up in their houses impregnating them in order to have an heir before his death, which happens at his 25th birthday. Weird ha?
So, Rhine gets taken and transported to this mansion with two other girls (13 and 18 years) and they all marry the same 21-year-old guy. And get locked up in the mansion. And be unhappy. And, well you get the idea.
Now to the actual review.
From the start the thing that annoyed me a lot was the pauses in the dialogue. Like person A said something, then a page long memory or description of surroundings before person B answers. This happened too often during the book. And for my liking there weren't enough dialogue.
Then the thing that made me strongly dislike this book: Characters. I know some people like weaker characters some stronger, but please make the characters match the subject of the book.
And for this book, the characters were too weak. No determination, defiance, even feelings showing besides the self-wallowing. And absolutely no development in any character.
Our main character talks a lot about running away and defying the Housemaster, but there is no emotion behind those words, no action to prove it. The same goes with everybody. Even from the 'evil' character there is no strong emotion, though he is described as the evil one.
Also when a character was introduced there weren't many notions about their looks. Only their hair colours. And there weren't any notions during the book. It's always nice to know bits and pieces during the story what characters are like, to build them in my head those things are important. Otherwise they are incomplete and nobody likes a character with just hair colour and name.
Maybe with better characters this book would've been really good.
The thing I liked was the main characters memories. They were irritatingly in mid-sentence, but I liked the stories she shared with just the reader and then those she shared with other characters.
Wither (Chemical Garden #1), Lauren DeStefano
Positive: Main charcters stories