FeverAuthor: Lauren DeStefano
Series: Chemical Garden, #2
Summary: Rhine and Gabriel have escaped the mansion, but danger is never far behind.
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.
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.
I was thrilled to begin reading more of the Chemical Garden trilogy. Right off the bat your heart is racing. Rhine and Gabriel have just escaped from the mansion and Vaughn's clutches. They have just abandoned the boat they stole and swam to shore when Gabriel notices that Rhine's hand is bleeding heavily and begs her to follow the direction of the lights in the distance for help. Rhine, who knows the dangers of the world, refuses at first, but after Gabriel's persistence, finally agrees. Once they arrive, they instantly regret their decision. They have found their way into a scarlet district, and are again trapped and in the hands of someone just as mad as Vaughn. Maybe even worse. Here, a woman called Madame takes in girls off the street, putting them to work as prostitutes. And Rhine is her next big star. But instead of being made into a prostitute, Madame decides to make her into a show girl, where the men can watch but can't touch her. Within the scarlet district are dozens of girls, one of whom Rhine becomes rather close to as well as her daughter Maddie, and drugs that she can't seem to keep Madame from giving to Gabriel. Being inside the scarlet district makes Rhine wonder if leaving her life at the mansion behind was the best idea, and she begins plotting to escape yet another horror.
But being at the scarlet district doesn't mean she's safe from Vaughn. In fact, it seems that Vaughn knows her every move, and the closer she comes to finding her brother, the closer Vaughn seems to come to finding her. And what she discovers throughout the book are more horrors than she could ever begin to imagine for herself.
This book is terrifying and thrilling at the same time. You never know what is going to happen page after page. There are some interesting new characters within the pages of Fever, some of whom I grew to love and adore, others I hated with passion. And Rhine never seems to be able to truly escape from her terrible father-in-law. And the entire time she is away from her life at the mansion, not once does she forget it and the people she left behind there. She never removes her wedding ring. And while the romance between her and Gabriel is more prominent, I still didn't feel the spark I was looking for. I think I just may be Team Linden after all. And the ending... Oh, the ending. It left me dying for the next book. I need to know what happens!! There is so much I want to say about this book, but if I say too much, I'll end up giving in to spoilers and I don't want to do that, but let me just say that there were things happen that I never even expected and I absolutely loved that about Fever. Such a great story.