Jennifer's Reviews > Cinder

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
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really liked it
bookshelves: ya-sci-fi

Initially I didn't really want to read this book as the idea of a story about a cyborg girl didn't really seem that appealing to me, but it was one of our options for our series fiction module in my YA Lit class. I initially chose to read Shusterman's Unwind instead, but decided since I had heard many people mention this series I would at least check the book out and flip through to get more familiar with it. I read the first couple of chapters, and then I couldn't put it down! I ended up being very suprised by how much I liked it.

Even though this is sci-fi, it really is so much more. This story of a cyborg named Cinder with an unknown past trying to make her way in the world has a little bit of everything: family drama, bigotry, action, international intrigue and threats of war, romance, and death; the fairytale feel and "magical" abilities of some people in the story will also appeal to the fantasy lovers.

I loved how Meyer used the classic fairytale of Cinderella as the inspiration for this story, but interpreted it in such a creative and different way (the same is true for the rest of the books in the series). Cinder has no memory of her life before she woke up as an 11-year old cyborg, or the accident that resulted in her being so severly injured that extreme scientific intervention was necessary to save her. She was adopted by a man who died of a new mysterious and deadly plague before he could tell her anything about her past, leaving her with a stepmother who resents her, and two stepsisters, only one of whom accepts Cinder.

There is a prince, and a ball. But there is also the threat of war with the Lunars, the population descended from a colony on the moon thousands of years early. The Lunar people have mutated and evolved to have the ability to control peoples moods, emotions, and perceptions, which is how the cruel royal family has maintained tight control over the Lunar population. But now, Queen Levana is not content just to rule the moon, and has set her sights on Earth, though there are rumors of a missing princess who could usurp the throne. In addition, the deadly plague that killed Cinder's adoptive father years earlier continues to spread, and has now infected her youngest sister Peony.

While one significant part of the story is very predictable, so predictable it may be intentional, I found this unique re-telling of Cinderella to be interesting, relatively fast-paced, with good character development, and I think it could appeal to a wide audience. Even though it is technically sci-fi, the focus is more on the people than the science, and though Cinder is a cyborg, and her technology does play a significant role at time, the focus is really on her humanity.

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Reading Progress

February 4, 2019 – Started Reading
February 4, 2019 – Shelved
February 4, 2019 – Finished Reading
February 5, 2019 – Shelved as: ya-sci-fi

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