Series: The Lunar Chronicles #3.5
Published by Feiwel & Friends on January 27th 2015
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In this stunning bridge book between Cress and Winter in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles, Queen Levana’s story is finally told.
Mirror, mirror on the wall,Who is the fairest of them all?
Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now.
Marissa Meyer spins yet another unforgettable tale about love and war, deceit and death. This extraordinary book includes full-color art and an excerpt from Winter, the next book in the Lunar Chronicles series.
Oh gosh where do I even begin with this review? I’m a huge fan of the whole Lunar Chronicles series and I will say that I’m also a fan of Fairest but it’s really hard for me to put it into words. Whereas I adored the rest of the series for the amazing characters and fast paced storyline full of twists and turns, I loved Fairest for the depth it gave to such a terrifying villain. I’m still quite horrified by what I just read and I don’t think that will go away for quite some time.
Levana is the evil queen of Luna. From the time I first read Cinder, I knew I would never like her. Unlike with other villains (think The Darkling), Levana really has nothing to endear her to readers. She’s just plain nuts and she has been from the start. Sure she went through some horrifying things in her childhood but I have a feeling she was messed up even before all those things went down. I admit that I read Winter before reading Fairest so some things that maybe would have been revealed for the first time in Fairest were actually already revealed to me in Winter. I didn’t mind that at all though because those things were shown with more detail in Fairest than in Winter.
I’m not sure why I thought Fairest was going to make me feel sympathy towards Levana but it definitely did not do that. In fact, it actually made me dislike her even more which I wasn’t sure was possible. Levana suffered at the hands of her sister, Channary, and from what little I saw of their parents, they didn’t seem to be much better. She never knew love from anyone in her family and when it came to romantic love, she didn’t have a clue what it entailed. She was more obsessed with Evret Hayle than in love with him and she was never able to see that. She was so delusional. Everything she did, she did for herself. She wanted adoration from her subjects but she went about obtaining that adoration in all the wrong ways.
I think the only thing I got joy out of in Fairest were the interactions between Celene and Winter. There is mention in Winter of them being friends as young children and I really liked seeing that friendship in Fairest. Obviously Selene was very young when Levana attempted to kill her so she and Winter didn’t have a ton of time to become friends but since they were pretty much raised together, they became fast friends. They were adorable together and it broke my heart knowing that they didn’t get to spend nearly enough time together or grow up together like they should have.
Also, Levana’s husband, Evret Hayle, is mentioned in the other books in the series and from those few mentions, I expected some great romance and a man that could see past her craziness to the woman underneath. Early on in Fairest I realized that was totally not the case. Levana had no qualms manipulating Kai because she didn’t know love and she wasn’t looking for it. That’s made pretty obvious early on in Fairest.
Overall, Fairest is just plain crazy and I loved it. Marissa Meyer has been a favorite author of mine for quite some time but she really impressed me with this addition to the Lunar Chronicles. It takes talent to get inside the mind of a person like Levana and I feel like she didn’t take away from the rest of the series. Levana is still the villain and that’s pretty clear in Fairest. It’s just a more in depth look at the villain we’ve come to know and hate.
What others are saying about Fairest:
Butterflies of the Imagination’s review: “Seriously. It’s only further proof that Marissa Meyer has a way with words that can’t be beat.”
Nice Girls Read Books’ review: “Fairest added so much more depth to Luna, Levana, Winter and even Cinder (we get to see baby Selene!) and I can’t wait to read the final instalment in this series now!”