Publication Date: January 3, 2012
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Pages: 390 pages
The internet has failed me. For YEARS I have seen the Lunar Chronicles books pass and while everyone seemed to love them, no one really told me why. And that's why I didn't read them until now. AND HOW I LOVED CINDER. Next time, please let me know when I'm blatantly ignoring a book series that I could be falling in love with - it's what the comment section of this blog is all about after all!
Cinder is the story of the future world where a cyborg mechanic named Cinder meets the prince of her country in a most crucial historical time. Cinder is, like her fairytale namesake, stuck with a stepmother that hates her and one evil stepsister, but surprisingly also one nice one. When the prince asks her to fix something for him, she's suddenly thrown into a major medical problem which is basically the future version of the plague. Mechanics aside, the real problem is is whether a cyborg can help a human being, and a prince at that, save the world.
Now the first 50 pages of CInder had me in belief that fantasy isn't for me and that I wouldn't enjoy reading this book after all. We're introduced to Cinder and for me, the whole "she's not like other girls" vibe was just laid on too thickly. We get it. YA narrators are never like other girls and are special little snowflakes. But then again, they are not because they do things other girls will do and most importantly, what's wrong being like other girls? That pet peeve put aside, I struggled through these pages and after them, I was completely hooked.
I'm still on the fence of Cinder as a character. She shows some amazing moments, but sometimes she just read too generic for me. I like the play on the original Cinderella character; not only is Cinder poor, she's also a cyborg while the prince is a human which is something just not done in that world. It made the divide between the two characters bigger and more believable when Cinder insists on constantly lying to the prince. However, at times I felt that Cinder was just kickass just to be kickasss. It was fake and out of character, but since there are more books in this series, I'm very excited to read them so I'll get a better grasp on her as a character.
A character that I did fall in love with is Lunar princess Levana who is just AMAZING. She's mean, cunning, intelligent and beautiful - exactly everything I want my villain to be. She doesn't hesitate to do whatever she needs to do to get what she wants and she manipulates absolutely everyone in the process. I loved how brutal she is and I can't wait to read more about her story in the other books.
Overall, this book was far from perfect. Cinder is an average character and the big plot twist at the end is something most readers will see coming before the halfway mark. However, I LOVED this book. I can see all its flaws and I can discuss them and yet I still absolutely adored it. It was just so much fun to read and so easy to escape in the world that Marissa Meyer created. This book really transported me from my own life to Cinder's and I think that's an amazing achievement for any book - so just for that reason, I can't give this less than 5 stars.