Fever by Lauren DeStefano

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Publication Date:
16th Feburary 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
ISBN:  144240907X 
Age Group:
Young Adult
Genre: Dystopian/Romance
Running away brings Rhine and Gabriel right into a trap, in the form of a twisted carnival whose ringmistress keeps watch over a menagerie of girls. Just as Rhine uncovers what plans await her, her fortune turns again. With Gabriel at her side, Rhine travels through an environment as grim as the one she left a year ago - surroundings that mirror her own feelings of fear and hopelessness.The two are determined to get to Manhattan, to relative safety with Rhine’s twin brother, Rowan. But the road there is long and perilous - and in a world where young women only live to age twenty and young men die at twenty-five, time is precious. Worse still, they can’t seem to elude Rhine’s father-in-law, Vaughn, who is determined to bring Rhine back to the any means necessary.

After another agonising wait (what's with these authors teasing us with fantastic ideas for stories and making us what for their publication?) Lauren DeStefano brings us part two of Rhine and Gabriel's adventure now they've escaped Vaughn's Manor House. 
DeStefano creates a frightening world where freedom means everything when a women live only 20 years and men barely hit 25. In Fever we learn life outside the Manor might just be worse than imprisonment as Lindon's wife. 

What I Liked: There was more world building in Fever than we saw in Wither, and DeStefano's new characters were both deliciously creepy and heartbreakingly good in a broken world. We learn more about Rhine as we visit her home and all the places near and dear to where she grew up.

What I Didn't Like: Gabriel. I hate him, passionately, and unwarrantedly since there is nothing passionate about his bitter little selfish character. He is utterly boring and when he does perk up enough to talk, all he does is complain. I'm not pro-Linden but I'm definitely anti-Gabriel. 
I also don't like that we're two books in and Rhine's brother still isn't in the picture. DeStefano talks him up like a major character but when push comes to shove - where the hell is this guy?

Fever didn't grab me like Wither did and I feel like I got less from the characters than I did from Wither. The climax was somewhat predictable, though I didn't expect it to be so dramatic. For all my complaints though, I am still heartily looking forward to next years release of Sever.
Raiding Bookshelves Rating
Cover Conversations: The Chemical Garden books so far have had beautiful exotic and tragic covers. The colours of the Fever cover really seem to reflect Rhine's return to freedom, especially after the purples of Wither (the colour of royalty and prosperity).


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