Book Review - Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Series: Lunar Chronicles #1
Publisher: Square Fish
Publication Date: 1 January 2012
Genre: YA - Sci-Fi
My Copy: Library - Paperback

 Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

This was one of those books where I had doubts that I would like it. I'm not that big into fairytale retellings, and Cinderella is probably one of my least favorite fairytales. However, I kept hearing wonderful things about this series, a coworker gushed about the series, and the cyborg aspect kind of interested me. I didn't have high expectations going into this novel, and in fact, I almost convinced myself that I wouldn't like it. I had checked it out from the library on a whim, and I waited until a couple days before it was due (roughly 54 days since I checked it out since I renewed it once) to actually read it. I'm really glad I decided to go ahead with it since I found myself loving the story!

I thought Cinder was kind of badass by the end of the book. She took care of herself and stood by her stepsister who was obviously the less important daughter to her mother. She started a little "woe-is-me" but she ended by taking a stand for not just herself, but for Earth. Sure she had moments of self-doubt, but I think everyone does so that just made her even better. I guessed at the ending fairly early in the book, so the only thing that kind of irritated me was that she didn't pick up on it sooner. I thought she ought to put the pieces together herself quicker than she did. I like that she's a female mechanic too. The secondary characters were a little one-dimensional to me. Even Prince Kai was kind of blah. I hope to see more development out of them in the second novel, even if Scarlet is focused on a new character and different fairytale.

Despite this being a twist on Cinderella, there is plenty of unique story line. The Cinderella aspect isn't overly obvious and isn't even the main story to me. The cyborg business wasn't explained perhaps as much as I would have liked, and Cinder was the only one named in this book. I hope the next book has more about the cyborg process as well as going more into depth about the Lunars. I knew this was futuristic and had cyborgs and androids, but despite reading the synopsis, I didn't pick up on the fact that there would be a civilization on the moon as well which made the story that much more awesome to me. So many interesting dynamics and politics explored in the book. I'm really looking forward to reading Scarlet next.

Favorite Quote:
Vanity is a factor, but it is more a question of control. It is easier to trick others into perceiving you as beautiful if you can convince yourself you are beautiful. But mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.


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