Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer (+ Audio Clip)

Posted January 9, 2013 by Debby in Book Reviews

Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer (+ Audio Clip)Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Series: The Lunar Chronicles #1
Published by Feiwel & Friends on January 3rd, 2012
Genres: Fairy Tale Retelling, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 387
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased

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.

4.5 Stars

Thank you forever, Marissa Meyer, for this book. Not only was it an extremely creative and enjoyable sci-fi retelling of Cinderella, but I was craving good young adult sci-fi for so long, and now I finally have found a great one.

I knew about this book for a long time, kept seeing the title on Goodreads, but something just kept holding me back. Though the idea (Cinderella is a cyborg) sounded interesting, at the same time it kind of gave me chills. But being a sci-fi fan, I finally decided I should check it out. And now I only regret not having read it sooner.

This book is awesome. First off, the world building is of the quality that reminds me why I love sci-fi. Just the whole concept of the Fourth World War destroying much of the world and the remaining countries unifying under new governments – brilliant! So believable and interesting. A plague, cyborgs, androids, hovers, ID chips, port screens – *sings* what a wonderful world. Having read so much YA recently, I don’t know when I last read a book that truly took total advantage of the world the author created. But this world was beautiful, and that truly engages you to keep reading.

Cinder is an awesome heroine. To be honest, the Cinderella fairy tale was never one of my favorites. I especially just found her to be really boring. But Cinder is not that. She is strong, courageous, snarky, and stands up for what’s right. Marissa gave her a really unique voice that I loved to read.

Kai somehow made the dreamy prince character even more dreamy. I really, really appreciate the times when the book sort of shifted to his point of view so we get that political angle in there. That really added a wonderful extra dimension to the story. And I love that there was no romantic melodrama – the romance really stayed on the side, which really fit the story.

The only thing I can say that’s less glowing is that the big time sekrit reveal was the most obvious thing in the world. Especially when everyone and their mother is recommending this to Sailor Moon fans. *cough* I knew the second it was mentioned, around page 40 or something. That’s not to say that it was less enjoyable to read, but the “must reach the ending” drive was kind of lacking.

But that all being said, I can confidently say this was a brilliant set up for the rest of the series. I’m eagerly awaiting the sequel, Scarlet, and anxious to return to this beautiful, interesting, and creative world.

Recommended To:

*conformist* fans of Sailor Moon, fairy tales, and science fiction.

Bonus! Audio Clip

One more special treat for you all! If you’d rather not read but enjoy this story all the same (or you’re looking for something to listen to on your morning commute), consider buying the Cinder audiobook! The lovely people at Macmillan have offered up this sample, the first chapter of the novel, so give it a listen and consider buying!

Thank you Macmillan! If you’re interested in the audiobook, you can purchase it at one of the following links.

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12 responses to “Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer (+ Audio Clip)

  1. I’m reading this right now, and whilst I wasn’t that impressed throughout the first 100 pages or so, it is beginning to pick up now and hopefully by the time I get to the end I will be just as in love with the book as you, and pretty much everyone else, seem to be!

    …I think I might know what you mean by the ‘big time sekrit reveal’…?? I’m a bit confused but there was something I read earlier on which I thought seemed really obvious although I won’t know if I’m right until I finish the book! The Sailor Moon reference does nothing for me becsuse I have never heard of it and have completely no idea what it means!

    Great review! 😀

    • Oh I know what you mean, it definitely took me a while before I really felt a connection to the characters and enjoyed the plot more, so I think, I hope, you’ll still get there 🙂

      Haha, it’s probably what you think it was xD But I don’t think Marissa Meyer could have kept it under wraps any better than she did. At least you don’t know Sailor Moon, haha (although you should fix that – it’s epic :P)

      Thank you 🙂

  2. I freaking adored this book! Like you, I waited quite a while before reading it but after all the rave reviews I just couldn’t put it off any longer. I loved all the characters (even the evil ones were awesome) and while the big reveal was super obvious it was still an enjoyable read. Great review.

    Oh and Scarlet is just as awesome!

    • Thank you! 🙂 It really is a great read, and indeed, all the characters were epic. I’m so jealous you’ve read Scarlet! Urgh, I keep hearing nothing but love for it… I’m really anxious to read it 🙂

  3. Thank you very much for this review. It was very helpful in making my decision to read this book. I wasn’t sure at first, much like you said you were, but now I’ll definitely be giving it a go 🙂 I hope I’ll enjoy as much as you did.

    • Wow, I’m glad I could help! I hope you do like it (otherwise I’ll feel all guilty and stuff *cough*) but yeah, it’s a good, solid read. 🙂

  4. This books has been sitting in my bookshelf for way too long. You just made me want to start reading it right now. And as you might know, every push to tackle the TBR pile is welcome. So thank you! 😀

  5. I am from México and this books isn’t coming yet to my country. I expect buy in some weeks more because I don’t have any money right now. But, ¡interesting review! Great.