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Review: Cinder (Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

cinderHumans 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.” – Goodreads

In this China-based retelling of the beloved classic, Cinderella, Linh Cinder is a gifted mechanic of New Beijing who’s life starts to spiral out of control after a deadly plague reaches the market where she works. Oh, and she’s a cyborg.

This is an extremely popular series with a lot of hype surrounding it and although I am continuing on in the series, I wasn’t blown away by this book.

My favourite books are ones with extremely well-developed characters and intricate believable worlds and although this book had a lot of good ideas, it lacked details for me.

Cinder didn’t particularly excite me as a character and I didn’t really relate to her, I feel as though this is because there wasn’t a hell of a lot to her. She’s cyborg, people dislike cyborgs… for some reason. She’s earns money as a mechanic which all goes to her guardian and her only friends are her step-sister, Peony, and an android named Iko. And that’s all we really know about her in the beginning. She did grow a little by the end though and I much more enjoyed Cinder’s character in the second novel in the series.

Prince Kai (the love interest) is the same for me, and now that I think about, so are most of the characters. They started off pretty flat for me but seem to improve by book two.

As mentioned above, the book is set in the city of New Beijing, with is ruled by an emperor who has a son called Kai. And again, that’s all I can really tell you about this place because were not told much else about it or how it came to be. Once again I feel as though this improved by book two. This setting did affect the story a little bit, mainly in the sense of names. Even though the main character’s name is Cinder, she is referred to as Linh Cinder when her full name is used, as is typical in Asian countries.

The book didn’t incite any particularly strong emotions for me but the concept and plot was interesting enough to keep me reading, and I’m glad I did as I am enjoying the second book even more.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in fairy tale retellings and anyone who is looking for a fantasy book that’s a little bit different. The cyborg/lunar storyline is undeniably interesting.

Kindle Edition | 400 pages

Goodreads rating: 4.15      Published: 03/01/2012 | Feiwel and Friends

My rating: 3

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