4-star rating

Cress by Marissa MeyerSynopsis.

Even in the future. there are damsels in distress…

In the third installment of the Lunar chronicles, Cress, having risked everything to warn Cinder of Queen Levana’s evil plan, has a slight problem. She’s been imprisoned on a satellite since childhood and has only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress a great hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress involving Cinder, Captain Thorne, Scarlet, and Wolf goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes as a high price. Meanwhile, Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

This is the last book in the series, to read my reviews of the other books see: Cinder (Book 1), and Scarlet (Book 2)

The Good Bits.

In Cress, the heroes find themselves separated for a good portion of the book. This gave the characters a chance to be developed more individually. Thorne, in particular, shined quite a bit more in this novel. Previously having been pegged as the attractive comic relief, you get to see a deeper side to Thorne. And more, the things about himself that he’s maybe not so proud of.

Cress, the title character, is a bit lovesick to begin with—but it’s endearing because it isn’t her singular focus. She’s a tech guru who just wants to get out and experience the real world. She also gives a view into the lives of Lunars, particularly those that aren’t in Levana’s good books. Another character you meet that isn’t Levana’s favourite Lunar is Princess Winter. Winter’s most prominent quality is that she’s, quite literally, going crazy. Both of these characters were great to see because they were more directly tied to Luna.

And all the places! Cress as a novel is like a trip around Marissa’s futuristic Earth with a sprinkling of Luna. This was great for the world building even though it was only one different place on earth. But there were deserts and camels! It was a great contrast to the landscape of New Beijing.

Sour Grapes.

I suspect that I spent more time being anxious about everyone getting back together than I did enjoying the time they were apart. It was a great way to know the characters individually, but I was in pain. I wanted everyone to be together and happy at all times. And I know that doesn’t make for very good conflict but I missed it.

Due to certain events, Throne develops a disability, and I know that you were supposed to feel for him. But I didn’t. For one, he barely acted any different. He was still cocky and comedic, except now he occasionally had to ask for help. I could tell that there were lines put in to let you know he was struggling, but I didn’t feel it. Moreover, I knew that someone would probably find a way to cure him. It just wasn’t the same emotional reaction you would expect to see from a real person concerned about having to live the rest of their life with a disability.

The Last Bite.

While Cress does appear to be the weakest novel in the series, it’s still a great read and Cress as a character is a great addition to the team. She brings a needed gentle touch to the crew and a technical genius that lets you know she isn’t just a pretty face.

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Thoughts on ensemble casts in novels? Love it? Or too many characters for you?

Have you read Cress? Let me know what you think in the comments!

Let’s do lunch again next week!