Thursday, October 18, 2012


the chemical garden trilogy #1
lauren destefano
simon & schuster bfyr
published 2011

After modern science turns every human into a genetic time bomb with men dying at age twenty-five and women dying at age twenty, girls are kidnapped and married off in order to repopulate the world.

Of course, it's not quite as simple as that.  At some point in the past scientists were able to cure all disease.  No one gets sick anymore.  No colds, no flus, cancer has been eradicated.  And then the children of these first born healthy humans known as the First Generation started dying.  Middle age was 10 and 12 and people frantically began searching for a cure.  No one was safe except for the Firsts.

Rhine's parents were some of those scientists who were working on a cure until on days, Pro-Naturalists bombed their laboratory and they were killed.  For years it's been Rhine and her twin Rowan keeping each other safe until Rhine is taken and sold off as one of three new brides for a wealthy architect named Linden.  On the surface the new life looks wonderful.  Every whim is catered to, the brides want for nothing.  Nothing, that is, except for freedom.

The book is gripping.  Rhine is determined to escape the gilded cage and return to her brother.  She is both careful and careless.  You forget at times what the whole theme means.  Girls as young as 13 being sold as wives and having babies so young, only to die before their children can really know them.  Heartbreaking.  Rhine is strong and stubborn, but she is compassionate and nurturing despite herself.  Her sister wives are all endearing in their own ways as well and there's times when you root for Linden and then want to slap him two seconds later.

Vaughn is mysterious and wickedly creepy.  The perfect antagonist in this house of horrors that Rhine has been confined to.

I give the book a good solid GO READ IT! recommendation.  So glad I picked up the second book and way too impatient for the last book to come out next year!

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