Be aware! Small Spoilers for Wither Ahead!!
OK, so we all know she ran away with Gabriel at the end, right? And look, Gabriel is all good and fine but he was more of a plot mechanism then a character for me in Wither so I wasn't thrilled that it appeared Fever was going to be all about Rhine and Gabriel. Also, I really dug the creepy house, creepy Vaughn and naive Linden. Plus Cecily suddenly came to the forefront of surprise for me right there at the end so I was loath to leave them.
But leave them DeStefano did, and I have to say it was disappointing, and made getting into their adventure (which was immediately a series of unfortunate events, Lemony Snicket style) hard. That being said there are some good characters that get introduced in Fever who would never have appeared else wise. But sadly Gabriel never really develops much, so I found it hard to root for him. I mean he's all very attentive, kind, and smoochy and all of that but I want something more about the boy. And I realize he was bought from an orphanage at the age of 9 and has grown up around Vaughn's household and this is supposedly why he's so naive and uncomplicated, but Vaughn is very creepy so you would think that would have complicated him a bit. Sadly a later character Silas, who you barely get to know, has decidedly more nuance to him then Gabriel who's been with the reader for a book and a half by the time you meet Silas.
Its all slightly frustrating, but stick with it because DeStefano has more up her sleeve in Fever then bland kissy scenes. Jenna has secrets to still be revealed, Vaughn is not that easily dismissed and the moment I much anticipated with Linden almost sort of happens!! Sadly most of this happens in the last 62 pages or so and thus there is a rather huge cliff hanger. I'd venture to say its much worse than the one at the end of Wither, but of course I read them one after the other so it's a bit hard to say.
I'll hold my judgement until book three, but as it stands Fever felt like the movement book. Not as satisfying story wise as book one, but necessary to move the story forward for book the third. It's possible with all three together it will flow a bit better, or upon a second read when I'm not on the edge of my seat praying for Vaughn and Linden to appear again for 278 pages.
Boy the covers still are pretty though!
Fever, by Lauren DeStefano
Published by Simon and Schuster, February 21st 2012
My copy acquired at the Ontario Book Bloggers meet, and kindly donated by the publisher