Michelle’s Paper Garden: Fever By Lauren DeStefano Review

Title: Fever (The Chemical Garden #2)
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing
Year: Published 2012
Type: Hardcover
Number of pages: 341 pages
Genre: Dystopia, young adult, romance, post apocalyptic

Summary: Running away brings Rhine and Gabriel right into a trap, in the form of a twisted carnival whose ring mistress 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.
In the sequel to Lauren DeStefano’s harrowing Wither, Rhine must decide if freedom is worth the price – now that she has more to lose than ever.

[Summary taken from: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11112619-fever%5D

Okay so I will start with the negatives. This book was a little predictable. I won’t spoil anything, but some of the twists, and calling them twists is definitely generous on my part, were so obvious that I actually rolled my eyes when I turned out to be right. Also, I was annoyed with the characters. Gabriel is completely useless throughout the entire books for reasons that I shan’t divulge. Now, you might think that in 341 pages, the relationship between Rhine and Gabriel to flourish and deepen, but it remains more or less stagnant because Gabriel is a deadweight for the majority of the book and Rhine was too busy thinking about either her brother or about how things weren’t that bad with Linden. I hated when she would get all nostalgic about her sisters and her time with Linden. She wanted nothing more than to escape him, but then she spends the whole next book thinking about how it wasn’t so bad after all. It just didn’t sit right with me.

Now the positives! It was darker, creepier, and generally, more post apocalyptic than the first book. There is some great world building in this book that the first was lacking. You really get to see just how terrible the world is now. There were some interesting new characters who were introduced, though some did not last long. Also, Rhine is a little feistier in this book. She finally grew a backbone. Thank goodness, because I can’t stand a weak female lead.

So my final thoughts are that the first book was better and I hope the that third and final book will be a mix of the positives from book one and two.


If you like trippy dystopian societies, you will like this series. If you don’t enjoy such a read, then don’t even bother.


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