18 February 2012

(ARC) YA Book Review: Fever by Lauren DeStefano

Release Date: 21 February 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Source: Around the World ARC Tours

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Goodreads description:
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 mansion...by any means necessary.
My Thoughts...

In the rivieting sequel to her 2011 debut, Wither, Lauren DeStefano once again had me mesmerized by her beautiful writing and storytelling. From the beginning of the book, I was absolutely hooked to the continuing story of Rhine and Gabriel and the world outside of Housemaster Vaughn's experiments.

Rhine and Gabriel have escaped from the glamorous yet dangerous world of Housemaster Vaughn and the others living in the mansion. However, they are immediately thrust into a situation that may prove even more dangerous than being under Vaughn's thumb. How will they survive the trials of the real world? And will they ever truly escape Vaughn's clutches? Rhine is the same determined young woman that we knew in Wither. Having escaped the mansion, she is more determined than ever to return to NYC and be reunited with her twin brother. One thing that I love about Rhine is her undying devotion and fierce determination. This is countered by the realistic and heart-wrenching portrayal of her relationship with Gabriel and her lingering memories of Linden. She's torn between the two in what is, in my opinion, a REALISTIC love triangle. Gabriel is her freedom, her CHOICE, embodied in a person--a sweet, caring person. Linden represents her imprisonment, but the truth is that he absolutely loved and trusted her and had no idea what his father was doing and how Rhine came to be with him. I've always been just a little bit "Team Linden" so I understand her struggle to forget the sweet memories that she had shared with him.

Fever introduces us to quite a number of new characters, each of which I thought were really interesting. "Madame" drove me crazy and Lilac made me fall in love with her. Maddie and Silas intrigued me. I don't want to tell you too much because I think you need to discover these characters all on your own, but suffice it to say that the characters were definitely a factor in my love for DeStefano's second novel. And I can't forget Gabriel! Gabriel is obviously along for the wide ride of an adventure with Rhine.  There are many points when he is really the one suffering the most. Despite the page time that Gabriel got, I still felt like I didn't know him as well as I should/wanted to.

This book also gives a few more glimpses into the world that Rhine lives in, which I really appreciated. We get a glimpse of the President and his wives and we get a better sense of the society's struggle between pro-science and pro-naturalism and just how fervently each side believe in their battle.  I felt like I understood a bit better why things are the way they are, if that makes sense.  Some of my reservations from Wither didn't seem to bother me in Fever as I was allowed deeper glimpses into the society.

In some ways, Fever does feel a little bit like a bridge between Wither and book 3, but in the end, this book left me BEGGING for book three (one of the reasons that sometimes it's so hard to read advance copies)! DeStefano definitely knows how to pull her readers in and leave them hanging. If you thought Wither ended on a cliffhanger, Fever's ending will blow your mind. The beautiful writing pulls you into the world and makes you fall in love (and hate) with the characters, makes you cheer and cry and yell, and when it's over your heart is still racing and you NEED more. It's going to be a long wait for book #3, so be sure to have the first two books on hand to read a couple of times before then!

1 comment:

Ems said...

I can't even contain my excitement over this one. I am SO excited to read it!! I wish the store would slip up and ship it early... :D

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