Okay, This is a book I have been meaning to review for almost 3 months now. It is one of my absolute favourites and I just couldn’t make time for it in this busy schedule I am currently having! Enough cribbing, getting on with the review:
Book by Marissa Meyer. #1 of The Lunar Chronicles.
Grade : A+
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.
The Story :
Cinder is a futuristic, dystopian take on the age-old fairy tale Cinderella. So, like in Cinderella, Cinder has an evil step-mother and step-sisters (difference being, there is just one evil step-sister, Pearl, and one very nice step-sister, Peony). There is also a prince charming, i.e. prince Kaito (Kai) of Eastern Commonwealth. The twist here is, the whole story is set in the future and hence, it has two new additions : androids (humanoids) are very common and moon is inhabited and the Lunars have a special power to control their appearances and control the minds of humans (Earthians, rather) and are ruled by an evil queen, Levana. Earth has undergone several changes since the 4th world war and continents have changed with the each following different types of administration methods, quite different from what we have right now. On top of that, Earth is ravaged by a deadly plague which spreads on contact and has no cure yet discovered and the Lunars are waiting to make their move as the population drops.
Talking about our protagonist, Cinder, is a cyborg, with some limbs replaced with a cybernetic operation and has a brain interface with synthetic eyes and is void of the ability to cry or blush. Thanks to her brain interface and the news feed in her eyes, Cinder has become a renowned mechanic in New Beijing, but she is still mistreated by her step-mother and one of her two step-sisters, Pearl. She has only an android, Iko and her younger step sister, Peony as friends. When Prince Kai drops by her mechanic stall one market day, asking her to repair his android, and the day ending with Peony getting infected by the plague, Cinder’s life takes a turn which she never expected, with more surprises on each step she took.
The Review :
Well, I totally LOVED this book. I actually came across this as a recommendation on GoodReads after I finished reading the Selection series. I thought it would be quite similar to the former series but I was pleasantly surprised by how different and awesome it was. I actually fell in love with how the story shaped. I have always been a fan of the fairy tales and add all the artificial intelligence stuff and it became even more appealing! And more than the story, I totally loved the characters, especially Cinder. Cinder is not your usual pretty, soft-spoken, well-mannered princess, but she has her own mind, a good sense of humor and uses a lot of witty sarcasm! I could actually visualize each character as Ms. Meyer painted their picture, a young teenager with a metallic hand and metallic foot, a prince of the Chinese origin, a small bot, Iko, who is constantly chattering and crops up as unnecessary interruptions but with her lines which put a smile on your face instantly! Every character had their way of being remembered. The fairy tale romance itself, is quite subtle, an occasional talk between Kai and Cinder, some short intimate moments as Kai insists on Cinder going to the ball with him, but I didn’t really miss it since the story was fast-paced enough for me to want to know what would happen next in it than reading pages and pages about Kai staring into Cinder’s eyes with nothing happening! The unique story line intrigued me as a reader with me wanting to immediately read the next book in the series, Scarlet, as soon as I finished the first book!
I totally recommend this book for anyone who loves fairy tales and who loves Sci-Fi or is intrigued by the idea of how the world might be with people leaving on the moon, sometime in the future! It is a wonderfully written piece of work!