Cinder (Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

Posted January 30, 2013 by Kaitlynn in 5 stars, Marissa Meyer, review, science fiction, series / 22 Comments

book cover of Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Title: Cinder (Lunar Chronicles #1)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Release date: January 3, 2012
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 400
Source: ALA
Reading level: YA

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.

Cinder is one of those books that has been getting a lot of hype since ARCs were first sent out. I’m always a little apprehensive going into a book that so many people have loved but I’m happy to say that Cinder now has one more fan. This is one Cinderella retelling that has not been done before and you won’t want to miss out on it.
Cinder is a very clever retelling of the original Cinderella story. Cinder is part human, part cyborg, yet still just as much of an outcast as in the original. She has a very nasty stepmother but instead of two evil stepsisters, she has one evil one and one nice one. There is of course a handsome prince but that is only a part of the story. The real story here is the story of the Lunars, a race of people who live on the moon, and whose queen, Levana, wants to take over the earth. It’s up to Cinder to save her people and maybe find love along the way. Oh and there’s a plague threatening the lives of everyone too. Because, you know, an evil moon queen with mind controlling powers wasn’t bad enough.
Cinder is a character readers will immediately sympathize with. She feels unwanted, unloved, and kind of worthless. She never knew her parents and her stepfamily has never wanted her. It seems like the only thing she is good at is being a mechanic. Well, that and getting into trouble. She’s very good at that as well. Both her skills as a mechanic and her knack for getting in trouble bring notice to her from the prince, Prince Kai. Kai is a very good guy in a very bad place. He’s barely an adult and he will very soon be crowned emperor. With this coronation comes the advances of the lunar queen as well as way too much responsibility. He’s another character that readers won’t be able to help feeling for. The characters are definitely what make Cinder such a good book. Cinder, Kai, Iko, Peony, they were all so wonderful (but especially Iko, the house robot with quite a sense of humor.)
The plot is rather predictable but surprisingly that didn’t really bother me. There were enough twists to the original Cinderella story that I still found Cinder greatly enjoyable. The fresh setting, the futuristic elements, the wonderful characters, and the completely gripping story kept me interested and by the end I was in love. While the ending is a bit of a cliffhanger I wouldn’t call it a terrible one. Fans will be pleased with the ending but I think it will also leave them wanting a bit more.
Overall, Cinder is one of the best retellings I have read in a while. It’s a fabulous start to Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles and I am very eager to read the rest of her retellings!
Looking for more reviews of Cinder by Marissa Meyer?
Cinder – Book 1
Scarlet – Book 2 – February 5, 2013
Cress – Book 3 – 2014
Winter – Book 4 -2015
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22 responses to “Cinder (Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

  1. Great review! I’m so glad you loved Cinder! It’s one of the more creative retellings out there. I loved the setting for Cinder too – Marissa Meyer managed to create such a wonderful world. 🙂 Scarlet is amazing and I do hope you enjoy it as well. 🙂

  2. I haven’t read this book yet, and until recently I was convinced I wouldn’t like it. I’ve seen so many great reviews lately, including this one, that I think I’ll have to pick it up.

  3. We had a lot of the same thoughts on Cinder. I found it to be predictable as well, but it didn’t bother me either. It don’t think you can really make a retelling unpredictable, seeing as it is a retelling. Cinder’s story was creative enough, though, that it still felt original in its own right.

  4. Yes, I totally agree with you about most everything. I loved this book, and I possibly loved Scarlet even more. I love how Marissa Meyer writes such amazing characters, and how she twists details of the fairy tales into her re-tellings.

  5. Amy

    It took me a while before I finally decided to read this one too, but I’m glad I did. It was such a creative retelling! I agree with the predictability too, but it didn’t bother me either. It seemed like that is the way it was supposed to be. Awesome review!

  6. So glad to hear that you are now a fan of Cinder. I loved it which is kind of surprising because I don’t really care for science fiction.

    And I agree a hundred perfect about the ending. I still want more, but I don’t feel like I’m hanging there uncomfortably. Marissa Meyer is pretty talented, I think.

  7. Great review! It wasn’t on my TBR list because I was not sure if it would be for me. But you liked it, so I need to give it a try!

    Annie 🙂

  8. Oh man! I loved this book too! 🙂 I know it can be scary starting a book so many people love – there’s all this pressure! But I’m glad you liked it!

  9. I agree that the predictability of the plot wasn’t a shortcoming of this novel at all. If anything, the fact that readers already knew what was going to happen only built up the anticipation. Like you, I wasn’t expecting to like this book nearly half so much as I did in the end. Bring on Scarlet!

  10. Christina Kit.

    Cinder was amazing, I loved how there was a lot of scifi stuff and it’s a totally different world, but it was all about characters and their emotions and Cinder’s huge heart. I found it thrilling and touching and just perfect!

    Lovely review 🙂

  11. When I read Cinder, it took me a while to get into the book, and then a month later I started Scarlet and couldn’t get enough of it. When I started Cress, I knew that this was one of the greatest series ever. I can’t wait for Winter.

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