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.
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I started reading the first couple of pages of this before realising I had no idea what the story was about. So onto GoodReads I went and was rather surprised by the sheer amount of low stars. You see, as little as I read, the writing is powerful and makes you want to read more. The general tone in reviews seems to be 'oh dear, another Dystopian novel', one reviewer commenting, 'making up some new horrible way people are treated in a future society '. I love Dystopia, there's so much you can do with it and I doubt that having a happy futuristic novel where everyone's eating cake would really sell. With Dystopia, teens like the dark side of what could happen. Not many people seem to share my passion however...
Now, upon finishing the book, I really enjoyed it. I will give it it's well deserved full five stars because the plot was intriguing, the characters kept my attention and weren't stereotypical and the darker scenes in the book were very well written, as was the rest of the book. The idea that you could die at just 20 (or 25, for the male readers) would be quite terrifying for most readers of this book which will probably be between 15 and 20. Myself, I'm 19 so the prospect of only having a few months left is quite a grim one.
Hopefully in the upcoming books we can learn about Rowan's side of the story and how he coped knowing his twin had been taken from him.
Received free from Simon and Schuster Galley Grab in exchange for an honest review