Author: Marissa Meyer
Price: PHP 450.00
Read Date: 23 June 2012
Synopsis (From Goodreads):
Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, the 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.
Official Book Trailer:
Review In A Nutshell:
What started out as a (somewhat) required reading, Cinder by Marissa Meyer turned out to be one of the most surprising and exciting science fiction/young adult books I’ve ever come across.
Having read books for more than half of my life, I am pretty confident of genres that I stay away from; not because they are bad, they’re just not exactly my cup of tea. One of those genres is Science Fiction or Sci-Fi. While I’m fascinated by the notion that there are others out there, that Earth isn’t the only living planet, that technology will dominate our existence, I always found the language used in Sci-Fi literature a little too heavy for my liking. The only science fiction novel I can recall buying and finishing, although it took a while, was Neuromancer by William Gibson. I consider fiction reading as one of my beloved pastimes wherein all I do is chill and let the words leap off the page. My work reading can really drain my brain sometimes so I don’t really like my leisure reading to be as equally taxing. Thus, you can imagine my… uh… dread when the Sci-Fi genre was coming up in our book group’s discussion plate.
I appreciate my groupmates’ understanding that there were members who were not really as comfortable with the genre so the book selection was levelled to the point wherein it can be appreciated without burden. Cinder by Marissa Meyer became the book that got the most number of votes (I remembered voting for something else). As our book discussion date draws near, it became urgent that I finish it. I personally didn’t want to repeat that two-peat failure, wherein I haven’t gotten to the halfway mark of the two books that were featured in a back-to-back discussion. So that became my goal, but I can honestly admit that I was not prepared for what the book brought to my table. What started out as a (somewhat) required reading, Cinder by Marissa Meyer turned out to be one of the most surprising and exciting science fiction/young adult books I’ve ever come across.
Cinder, which is the first of four books in the Lunar Chronicles, tells a story of a girl by the same name who is a cyborg and a gifted mechanic known in New Beijing. Cinder was adopted by Garan, a scientist, during one of his trips in Europe and who dies from Letumosis – a deadly plague without vaccination – within days after his arrival. Cinder was left with her stepmother, Adri, and her two stepsisters, Pearl and Peony. Since then, she supported the family through the money she gets from her mechanic gigs and fixes their household gadgets whenever Adri feels the need to. One day, Prince Kaito of New Beijing quietly appears in Cinder’s shop to have one of his royal androids fixed. Since that fateful meeting, it has been an adventure that leads Cinder to discovering more about her past and what she will do to fight for a world and a future free from Queen Levana, who may be more vicious than the deadly blue fever.
Having previously read Ash by Malinda Lo, which was also branded as a Cinderella re-telling/re-imagination, I was honestly feeling wary getting into a similar book. I was thinking how Cinder will be different and if it will retain anything, some semblance, of the fairy tale I’ve grown up with. Well, the good thing was not only did Marissa Meyer paid due respect to the original story, she also took the narrative to a different level. The Cinderella storyline served as an inspiration more than a template to be followed. I found Cinder refreshing and it met my expectations of how a re-telling/re-imagination should be done. Although I was able to see through one of its key plotlines early on, perhaps due reading too much Young Adult lit, Cinder didn’t disappoint. I feel it’s largely due to Marissa Meyer’s way of creating a story; how she pulls you along for the ride, leaving you part satisfied, part yearning for more. It’s always great to encounter authors, new or old, who are not writing Young Adult fiction for the sake of breaking into its highly lucrative market but more because they have a story to share. Marissa Meyer wrote a fantastic one and I absolutely cannot wait to read more.
4 out of 5 stars
My Two Cents:
Buy a copy of Cinder, even if it’s paperback. If you have an eReader, download from most online stores. Personally, I wish I would have coffee with Marissa Meyer if only to tell her that she helped me lose my fear of reading fiction that re-tells/re-imagines what I know, love and grown up with.
Some Quick Facts about the Lunar Chronicles:
– Marissa Meyer already has the entire four books planned out as follows (Source – EW Shelf Life):
Book 1: Cinder – inspired by Cinderella
Book 2: Scarlet – inspired by Little Red Riding Hood
Book 3: Cress – inspired by Rapunzel
Book 4: Winter – inspired by Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (Ahem! No Huntsman? I kid.)
– The cover art and an excerpt of Scarlet were recently shared online by USA Today Books, which you can read here.
– Marissa Meyer also released a prequel to the series entitled Glitches, which I have also given a rating of 4 out of 5 stars.