Author: Marissa Meyer
Series: Lunar Chronicles #1
Genre: Teen Fantasy
Rating: 4/5 stars
The Overview: 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.
I’d always intended to read Cinder, but it wasn’t very high up on my priority list. Then the blogosphere exploded after the third book, Cress, was released at the beginning of the year. I swear it was a solid three months of rave reviews left and right. Thinking this series was a trilogy (it’s not), Cress was going to be the last installment (it’s not), and wondering what I was missing out on, I decided to jump on the bandwagon. From what I can tell, most people enjoyed the first book and then went on to absolutely love the second and the third. Having read (and liked) Cinder, I can definitely see the potential it has to go somewhere amazing.
First of all, the concept for the story was out of this world. I am definitely not a fan of fairytale retellings, but found this one oddly compelling because it had so many unique twists. Even though the story is a classic and I already knew where it was heading, Meyer made it feel new and exciting at every turn. If the cyborg twist wasn’t cool enough, then the “alien” Lunars and the beginnings of an apocalyptical pandemic certainly tipped it over the edge. Even though it stayed true to all the classic fairytale elements of Cinderella, it always felt like I was reading a detail-rich urban fantasy… I loved it.
You wouldn’t think a girl who is half human, half machine would’ve been relatable, but Cinder was honestly the best part of the story. I liked her from the first page and was totally invested throughout the whole book. Although she was in tough situations, she was anything but a simpering little girl. I love how resourceful, compassionate, and brave she was and sincerely hope she has a strong role in the next two books.
Overall, I really enjoyed Cinder and am looking forward to continuing on a series. I can honestly say it’s unlike anything I’ve read before, so Meyer gets some major originality kudos. If you’re a fan of YA and Urban Fantasy, check this one out – it’s an awesome hybrid of the two.
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