Book Review: Cinder

11235712Author: Marissa Meyer

Book Title: Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)

Genre: Young Adult – Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Type: Series (Book #1)

Format: Hardcover, 390 Pages

Publishing Date: January 3, 2012

Summary: 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. [summary from Goodreads]


My Thoughts: I’m not going to get into the plot and all of that because, given how old this book is, I am sure most of you have already read it plus the description above says a lot. 😉 What I will say is that I found it completely original, which stunned me considering that it is a retelling of a very old and very well known story. Meyer took the story of Cinderella and transported the characters to Beijing, China in a sort of post-apocalyptic world and she gave the people a pandemic that is a death sentence for any human who contracts it. There are three types of people: cyborgs (like Cinder) who are half human and half robot, normal humans that think they are superior to everyone else, and the Lunars who live on the moon and because of their varied gifts actually might be better than everyone else but they are total jerks and the people on earth fear them. The coolest thing about this retelling is that Cinder is a cyborg mechanic, which makes her such a bad ass. It is seriously such a cool twist that takes the whole “damsel in distress” fairy tale that Cinderella turned into once Disney got their hands on it and morphs it into something new and refreshing. Cinder is a tough, no nonsense kind of girl, her younger stepsister, Peony, is a sweetheart without a wicked bone in her body and they are very close, her best friend, Iko, is an android robot that wishes she was a real live girl and everyone can’t help swooning over prince Kai. The Lunar queen, Levana, gives all other evil queens a run for their money too and it’s awesome even though I hate her. Haha!

What makes the whole series even better is that each book is a twisted retelling of other fairy tales like Cinder is. They are as follows:

  • Book 2: Scarlet (Red Riding Hood)
  • Book 3: Cress (Rapunzel)
  • Book 3.5 Fairest (this one isn’t retelling a fairytale and it is really more of an addition type of story to the series that revolves around the Lunar queen, Levana, to give readers more back story on her.)
  • Book 4: Winter (Snow White – hits shelves on November 10th)

If I had to fault anything about this book it would be the pacing. It took me a bit to get into the story and I found a couple of the twists a bit predictable. Other than that though it was a quick read once I got into it and I just made a library run to pick up the next three. I’m excited to dive into them and find out what happens next for Cinder as well as get to know the rest of the cool girls in the Lunar Chronicles. So if you haven’t checked these books out yet, get to it, and if you have let me know your opinions in the comments. 😀

Rating: 5-flowers

Quotable Moments: 

“Even in the Future the Story Begins with Once Upon a Time.”

“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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