Book Three in The Chemical Garden Series
Rating: Three out of Five Stars
More a 2.5…. Almost a 3.
This book, as well as the whole series, is difficult for me the actually rate. I can’t figure out if a love it or hate it. And every thing I want to happen never does and it never turns out how I want and uuughhhh… I get so frustrated.
First off, this series has a pretty amazing premise. Wither was an excellent title for the first book and so was Fever for the second. But I didn’t like Sever for the third book, it didn’t grasp and intrigue me and I never had the “Aha!” moment like I did with the others. And with that, it kinda pisses me off it’s called the “Chemical Garden” series and we don’t learn wtf a chemical garden is until the, what? last three or four chapters in the ENTIRE series?! It’s a great name, don’t get me wrong, but I would have liked to have some inkling about that whole idea much, much sooner.
So considering the name, and the covers, got worse as the series went on, I feel the actual story did too. Wither was great, Fever was eh, and Sever was a bunch of good and bad stirred together. It’s almost as if her writing style changed as she progressed and the way she structured the book. Wither had a lot of internal turmoil and conflicting emotions but by the time we get to Sever, there are a lot of different characters we interact with but none are as strong as the first four or five we met. So while those character’s aren’t necessarily poorly constructed, they just seem underdeveloped compared to the amazing sense of individual personalities we met in Wither. And I get it, we ate, slept and breathed with Cecily, Jenna, and Linden but because we had such dynamic and depth in those three, we loved and hated them, connected and FELT Rhine’s struggle between Linden, Rowan and Gabriel, it was like we were left on a limb in Sever and told to jump off with no one to catch us. Wither was an amazing, unique, exquisitely, passionate and emotional book. Sever was any other YA dystopia. Rhine went from being engaging and a fighter to being passive and, well, annoying at times.
And that beginning… oh kill me now. Worst waiting game. It was stagnant and stale and JUST LEAVE ALREADY RHINE! Where’s the ferocity we got to see in Fever and Wither? Gone gone gone gone gonneeeee. I thought she would never leave that damned house. And the ending.. the ending… *sniff* just makes me sad.
At the end of the day, I think I rated all these books a three, Wither was almost a four and Sever was almost a two. But it’s a good series for dystopia lovers and has a different take on the post-apocalyptic idea which I very much enjoyed. I would still consider it a must-read series.