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.
The Good Bits.
I didn’t expect to burn through this book as quickly as I did, but it is the definition of a page turner. Anytime I finished a chapter I had to start the next one right away because I wanted to know what was happening. Marissa really does a wonderful job at ending each chapter with something that makes you want to start the next one right away.
Another thing I didn’t expect, was to like Cinder. Nowadays, it feels like a strong female character is almost always a character that rejects any romance and thinks those girls are silly, is stand-offish and prickly, on top of being a tortured soul. But in a few subtle ways Cinder breaks that mold. Certainly she doesn’t want to be like every other girl swooning over the prince, but when it happens she accepts it. And she honestly is super likable and has no trouble connecting to other people, providing they aren’t prejudiced against cyborgs. And now onto Kai, who I also loved. He isn’t a price that would push aside his duties and responsibilities for love which was wonderful. But at the same time, you could tell how much he wished he was just a normal citizen without those responsibilities.
— Liselle (@lunchtimelib) March 1, 2016
The world building for Cinder is great because it’s a futuristic setting grounded in reality. This means that there aren’t too many new terms to learn and that it’s easier to picture the places in the novel. Personally, I like future settings because I enjoy seeing all the new technology that the author has written in, and Cinder had no shortage of it. And the wonderful thing about it, is that it was all accessible. It’s easy to imagine a hover car, or android, or tracking chips, which meant that even when new terms were introduced it wasn’t confusing or distracting.
Finally, I loved the whole interplanetary relationship between Luna (the moon) and Earth. In some ways there was real fear, and in others there was a show of xenophobia. But let’s be real here, I was mostly interested in the supernatural abilities many of the citizens of Luna have. In the novel there’s a more scientific explanation, but let’s just call it what it is, which is super cool Professor X-type mind control abilities.
The only downside to this novel was the predictability. There are certain things (I won’t spoil) that are very obvious. It’s meant to be a mystery, but it took me less than a second to solve it. There’s also a moment where Kai has to make a difficult decision, and I knew it was supposed to be hard for him, but you so clearly know what he’s going to do. So if you want to be shocked and surprised at every turn, you may be disappointed.
The Last Bite.
For great futuristic world building, likable characters, and the start to a series Cinder is fantastic. I read this so fast when I finished I sat there like “oh, already?” I’ll be reviewing this entire series in the weeks to come so look forward to it!
How much does it matter to you if a book is predicable?
Have you read Cinder? Let me know what you think in the comments!
Let’s do lunch again next week!