Sunday, November 26, 2017

Bookish Thoughts: Cinder by Marissa Meyer

The screw through Cinder's ankle had rusted, the engraved cross marks worn to a mangled circle. ~ Opening of Cinder



Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer
Feiwel & Friends, 2012
Science Fiction (YA); 400 pgs
Goodreads 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.
I have wanted to read Cinder for awhile now and knew this year would be the year. Thanks to all of you who voted for it in my September TBR poll! I knew Cinder was a cyborg and that it was a loose re-telling of Cinderella when I began reading it, but, for the most part, I went into the novel with little idea of what to expect.

The novel kicks right off with Cinder at her booth in the market and a poorly disguised Prince Kai appearing at her stall seeking the mechanic's help. The two hit it off well right from the start, although their conversation is brief. Soon after he leaves, a woman in the market shows signs of a fatal and highly contagious plague that is threatening the kingdom, and all hell breaks loose.

The novel took a while to really get off the ground for me. The author takes her time setting up Cinder's situation, which is definitely not a good one. She lives with her guardian and the guardian's two daughters. Only one of the girls is nice to Cinder, someone she might call a friend even. The guardian is particularly nasty. I never really got a feel for the other daughter, other than her sharing in some of her mother's animosity toward Cinder.

I think it was the moment when Cinder first meets Dr. Erland that I became completely invested in the novel. Things started falling into place quickly after that and the tension began building at a steadier pace. I wasn't entirely surprised at the direction Cinder took, although I wanted to see how everything would evolve.

I loved that the novel is set in New Beijing. Although there is not a strong sense of place other than your generic kingdom, the greater political picture caught my interest--the coalition between the governments, the fear of the Lunars, the people from the moon. The Lunar Queen in particular seems to be a force to be reckoned with--ruling her own people and others with manipulation and fear.

I worried initially that the characters would lack much in the way of development, but as the book went on, they became more defined and interesting. Kai isn't just the love sick young man and Cinder is also more than she seems on the surface as well.

I confess it was Scarlet that first drew my attention to the Lunar Chronicles. I haven't yet read it because I knew I needed to start with Cinder. While I liked Cinder, I didn't fall in love with it the way I hoped. Still, I am looking forward to seeing what Scarlet holds for me as I've heard it is even better than Cinder, and I want to know what happens next!


To learn more about Marissa Meyer and her work, please visit the author on the author's website

© 2017, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

20 comments:

  1. I'm glad you enjoyed Cinder. The series definitely gets better, I think my favorite is Cress. But yes, Scarlet is quite great :) As the series develops, I really came to appreciate the female roles, which are not generic but rather innovative and typically masculine, so that was kind of great for the my inner feminist lol. Great review!

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    1. Berls - I'm looking forward to diving into Scarlet soon. I am glad to hear you really liked Cress--it's something I can look forward too. :-) I like books that take the female character and put her in a nontraditional role. Thanks, Berls!

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  2. I've been waiting for the review! I just realised I've forgotten what I thought of the book (not a good sign) but now I want to re-read it.

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    1. Eustacia - I am glad I finally got the chance to read it!

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  3. I didn't love Cinder, and never continued the series. Might have been an error on my part if it gets better.

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    1. Jenclair - It's hard to know whether it's worth continuing when you weren't smitten with the first book in a series. Sometimes it is worth it and other times, not at all.

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  4. I've never thought this was a book for me but I think my sister might like it.

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    1. Kathy - If your sister reads it, I hope she likes it!

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  5. I haven't read this series yet, and I want to, it's just not a high priority for me right now. Still, it's on my list. :) Hope Scarlet exceeds expectations!

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    1. Lark - I understand. Look how long it took me to get to it. :-)

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  6. I know this book has been around for a while but I think I totally blanked out on the fact that it's a futuristic type of story. Sounds pretty cool actually.

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    1. Iliana - I enjoyed it. I can't wait to read the next book in the series.

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  7. I know that Meyer is a big name in YA. But I get my YA kicks from a couple of local authors. I think I'm good.

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    1. Book Sage - This type of book isn't for everyone, I know.

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  8. I've been hearing lots of good things about this series. I'll have to get to them someday. :)

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    1. Melody - I hope you do. It's a fun series--at least so far. :-)

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  9. I liked Cinder and thought it had a lot of potential but I really enjoyed Scarlet. There's a lot going on in that one! I hope you enjoy it too and now I need to go read Cress!

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    1. Katherine - I need to get to Scarlet soon. I am glad you enjoyed that one even more! That's good news for me. :-)

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  10. I am glad that you enjoyed this one even if you didn't quite fall in love with it. I hope to get this one read at some point. Great review!

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    1. Carole - Hopefully you will enjoy it when you get to it, Carole!

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