Cinder by Marissa Meyer

ImageThere’s been a mad hype around this book (and the sequel) and it sounds like the kind of thing I’d love, I mean: fairytale retellings, aliens, cyborgs and a charming prince (or is it prince charming? I don’t know). Before I properly go into the review zone I apologize for the lack of quotes in this, it’s because I didn’t mark any. Which doesn’t mean it didn’t have some great ones, it’s just that after every single line I was already jumping to the next, I needed to know what happened. And now I have.

Cinder is about, well, Cinder. She’s a cyborg (which means she has mechanical parts inserted into her body, like prosthesis) and in the society she lives in that’s bad. Cyborgs aren’t considered human anymore, even though they are, and there’s a lot of prejudice against them. That’s one of the reasons her step mother hates her. So her only friends are her little sister, Peony, and an android called Iko. Cinder is a very well-known mechanic, but she’s surprised when Prince Kai comes to her to fix his android. That was the first of many events that turned her life upside down, twisting everything she thought she knew.

This is a very hard book to summarize, there’s just so much going on and it goes at a break-neck speed. I was honestly heeling at one point. And it was so good, I mean it’s not suddenly my favorite book of all time, but it’s worth the read. It absolutely is. Go pick it up RIGHT NOW. There’s just something magical about seeing those characters you’ve grown up with in a different way: Cinderella and her step family, the Prince and the fairy godmother (though I’m not entirely sure who that’s supposed to be, but I have a hunch).

In the topic of characters, I hated Cinder’s step mother, hated her. She was just plain mean; there was no excuse for what she did. None of it. I’m sure I’d have hated the bad sister too, Pearl, if she’d had a more active role in the story, because from what we can see of her she’s just like her mother. There was no pity in her and no empathy of any kind. I saw no redeemable qualities in her.

I really liked Cinder, she was a strong girl even after everything her step mother put her through. But we could still see the pain in her, the brokenness, just around the corner. And since the story is from her perspective we have a much better understanding of her than any other character. We get this unfair balance through her eyes and it only makes everything much more real.

There are also some chapters where we see things from Prince Kai’s perspective, but they aren’t many. Which is good, because I don’t really like those books that keep switching perspective’s every chapter. But we see enough of him to know his interest in the welfare of his country.

Now, the aliens. They are called Lunars and they used to be humans from an old moon colony, but have long since evolved into something very different. Lunars have what is called Glamour, or magic by some people, and with it they can make people see whatever they want them to see. Their queen, Levana, uses it to make herself beautiful and will do everything in her power to marry Prince Kai.

I’m starting Scarlet right after I read Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, but I’m kind of scared. What if it doesn’t live up to my very high expectations of it? Waiting for the third book is going to be horrible. So, has anyone read Cinder? What about Scarlet? Wouldn’t a movie of this book be amazing?



13 thoughts on “Cinder by Marissa Meyer

  1. I’m not a YA fan, but you’re describing some interesting twists that might indeed make this work outstanding (I’m impressed by Lunars concept). My only “caution” warning is triggered by the overly villainous step-mother. I’m kind of torn: I do love fairytales (which tend to be very black-and-white anyway), but lately I’ve been attracted to more of an ambiguous villain that is hard to place immediately. I like bad guys that have multiple sides to them, maybe even a reasoning you can sympathize with.

    I really hope you will enjoy the second book as much as you did first, though!

    • I’m exactly like that when it comes to villains, I mean they are human too right? They are entitled to different emotions and reasons. I did give it a bit of a leeway because it’s supposed to be a fairy tale sort of, but I’d have liked a complex character better.

      Thanks, so do I :)

  2. Everyone in the world seems to have read this book (except me) and loved it! It makes me really excited to start it… you know, after I get through reading the 20 other books I already own waiting to be read. I’m a little worried I’d be the oddball and not like it, but you never know until you try, right?! I mean, the concept alone sounds interesting enough! Great review :)

    • I was feeling exactly like that before I read it and I was almost sure I’d like it, but not love it like everyone else ever. I might have shuffled it over to the top of my TBR… not my proudest schedule move that one. At least it was worth it. Thanks for commenting :)

  3. Oh man I loved this one so darn much and I am happy to see that you did too. I had some crazy high expectations for Scarlet too, so don’t worry because that book blew me away. I liked Scarlet even MORE than Cinder! Enjoy!

  4. Ohhh man, I can’t wait for you to read Scarlet! I loved Cinder, and I love reading reviews for it because they let me relive so many happy feelings about that book. Looking forward to your thoughts on the next one too! Especially since this series will progressively include more and more perspectives (and you said you didn’t like that).

    • I can’t wait to read it either, I had to force myself not to start it as soon as I finished Cinder but it’s definitively one of the next books I’ll read! I’ve only heard good things about both this book and the next so I’m feeling less scared of being disappointed. I know! I have no idea how that will play out for me, I just hope it won’t bother me that much. Thanks for commenting!

  5. I just finished this one too earlier this week, and loved it as well! I I have started Scarlet, and I feel like it started off kind of slow, but it seems to finally be picking up a little now where I’m at. I hate that I have to wait for two more books after this though! Ugh!

    • According to everyone Scarlet gets better, so hang on in there :) Right? I hate waiting for books to come out, I have to try to remember everything that happen on the last ones because it might be important. Except I read them a year ago and I probably won’t. Hopefully it’ll be worth the wait! Thanks for the comment :)

      • I hate trying to remember everything too! I had the hardest time with that when I read Insurgent, and I had only read Divergent several months (less than a year) before. But Cinder’s (and so far Scarlet’s) plot is not nearly as complicated as those books, so maybe it won’t be as much of an issue. Plus Meyer does some rehashing in Scarlet, so she’ll probably do the same with the others. Roth doesn’t do any rehashing in Insurgent, she just dives right in there!

      • That’s great! Because I have terrible a memory :)
        I still need to read Divergent though, it’s in my TBR pile so it’s good to know I better read them close together, right?

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