Saturday, December 10, 2011

Review: Cinder

Title by Author: Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Series (if applicable): Lunar Chronicles #1
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Publication Date: Jan 2012
Page Count:  387
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.

ZOMG! I have to wait for a sequel to a book that hasn’t even been published yet?

I would like to start out by saying that I read all different types of books, but mostly historical fiction or contemporary, with forays into Young Adult and fantasy and even an occasional Sci-Fi.  This book brings all of these things together, a fairy tale, set in a future, with cyborgs and romance and teenage behaviours with politics and intrigue and genetics.  I was sucked in to the book and avoided all contact with the outside world as much as possible to stay with the characters in Cinder.

Characters: 5 Stars
The characters were well drawn and seemed very real.  Marissa Meyer did an excellent job of portraying her characters and also capturing the nuances of teenagers.  I loved Cinder and how she saw the world, how she saw herself as a part of a world that didn’t really accept her for who she was, a cyborg.  In the world after World War IV, cyborg implants were a way to save people, but society still would not accept them as a normal human, something less than human, as evidenced by the attitude of her step-mother Adri (who you just love to hate!).  She is also at odds with her feelings with Prince Kaito; she really wants to be with him, shocked that she had even fallen under his charms, but feels that she cannot be with him as he would most likely reject her because of her implants.

Prince Kaito, heir of the Imperial Throne of the Earthen Union, is a young adult who wants nothing more than be a teenage boy who likes to go out in to the city in cognito, but knows that he has to prepare himself for assuming the throne and doing what is right for his people.  It was fun reading the scenes between these two people, and the emotional tug-of-war that each is going through.

The other characters in the story were also true to form.  The doctor was quirky, it was fun to hate the step-mother and the Lunar queen was perfectly manipulative.

World Building: 3.5 Stars
This should have had a large part in the story, and Miss Meyer’s did not really get in to it until the last section of the book, which is unfortunate.  Even though it was mentioned that the story was set in New Beijing, the main characters are running around in clothes that could be found on the street of any present day American city, with no nod towards the futuristic world that they exist in.  It is hard to tell that the city is built on the ruins of Beijing, China, and the cultural influences that are evident in the city.  It could have enhanced the story line even more with rich details of the Eastern culture on a futuristic world.  There were futuristic components in the story with machinery, as Cinder is a mechanic.  Many sci-fi books include vernacular that would be appropriate for the story, making up new words for a new world.  There is a glimpse of the Asian influence in the description of the palace, but that almost seemed Near East instead of Far East.  At the end of the story, some of the clothing was described in terms of Asian influence, but I felt that new fabrics could have been used.  

Plot: 4 Stars
As previously mentioned, I was completely sucked in to the book.  Rarely do I try to carve out time to read during the day, I found myself delaying whatever needed to be done to read this story.  I even stayed up late to finish, and already anticipating the next Chronicle!  

Although at times the story was predictable, it was still thoroughly enjoyable.  I had figured out many of the main points early on in the book, due to the way it was set up, but that did not detract from the story.  It was enjoyable watching the intrigue with the Lunar queen unfold, and learning more about the history of Cinder herself.  The ending was also well-done… it was not jaw-dropping, but the perfect set-up for follow-on books.  I cannot wait to see where we will go next in the Lunar Chronicles.

This was quite an enjoyable read, even for this adult.  Yes, it was a bit predictable, and the world wasn’t completely well-drawn out, but it was captivating and thoroughly enjoyable!  It has a little bit of everything for everyone, and I thought it was well-written.  I was somewhat hesitant to read another Young Adult book, as the past several ones I have read have disappointed, but this one did not.  Miss Meyer, you have one adult impatiently waiting for more! 

Even with the low scores on both the world building and the plot, I have to give Cinder 5 Stars for completely enthralling this reader!

This book was received from for an honest review.

Favorite Quote:
“It’s not like wires are contagious.”
Rating:  5 Stars
Tag: fairy tale, futuristic, cyborg, young adult, intrigue
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...