by Lauren DeStefano
Published by: Simon & Schuster
On: February 21, 2012
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
This is the sequel to Wither, so it may contain some spoilers.
Fever picks up immediately after Rhine and Gabriel escape the mansion and Vaughn's evil clutches. They aren't free for long. They fall directly into a deviant world of the circus-like red district. Again, they must find a way to escape and find their way back to Manhattan. On their journey, they learn just how dismal the world has become and that maybe life in the mansion wasn't so bad. This story is non-stop movement with a surprise around every corner.
I didn't get that feeling from this sequel.
This book felt so grim. I kept wondering how it could get worse, and then it would. The world has turned into such an awful, disgusting place, and it left me feeling empty and sad.
I hate to say it, but I think the author took it too far.
There were VERY disturbing aspects of the story (i.e. teenage prostitution, rape, infanticide) that really got to me. I've read more disturbing things, so I'm not saying that's a bad thing...but I'm afraid it was taken a little too lightly in this novel.
There was a whole lot of running and sleeping. When they weren't running, they were sleeping. Sometimes they were even sleeping while they were running. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, but it's just something I noticed. The cover is accurate. Reading this made me feel like I was on drugs.
My last major gripe with this book was that I felt like the story has not gone anywhere since Wither. The characters remain victims. In a lot of ways, the antagonist of this trilogy is the world itself and what it has become. I want to feel like they are learning something or fighting back, but they don't. I hope the third novel is different.
Okay, I don't mean to pick on it so much. I gave it 3 stars, so there were obviously things I liked!
The writing is still fantastic. I love her use of imagery. She writes stories like they feel...if that makes sense. She really captures the tone. I think the reason this book bothered me so much was because the writing was so good that it felt too close for comfort.
At first, I was very unhappy with the relationship between Rhine and Gabriel. They have no chemistry. I kept wanting to hear more from Gabriel. Then, I realized...this isn't the conventional, over-done, love-at-first-sight relationship. They don't have chemistry because they hardly know each other! He doesn't speak much because he was a servant his whole life. It's realistic and not idealistic, and that is a breath of fresh air.
Also, the ending was major. I love a good cliffhanger.
Obviously, if you already read Wither, I'm sure you want to read Fever, and you should! It is a good read. I'm excited to tackle Sever this spring. I hear chapter 24 is a doozy, and I must know.
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