Series: The Lunar Chronicles #1
Published by Feiwel and Friends (1.3.2012)
Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Format: Hardcover, 387 pages
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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.
This is only the second fairytale retelling that I’ve read (Beastly being the first). While there were a few similarities between Cinder and its inspiration, Cinderella (evil step-mother and two step-sisters, the shoe, er…foot), it was still its own unique story. I absolutely adore futuristic stories – I love to see all the different opinions of how the author thinks the world will turn out. And I really enjoy the stuff with cyborgs/androids/robots, even though I’ve not really read many. The robotics were a great addition to this story – especially since our lead was part cyborg and worked as a mechanic.
I loved Cinder. She was a great lead female and was easy to connect with. Although, I gotta say, I really felt for her situation. She was basically her step-mother’s slave girl (just like Cinderella) and the way she was treated was awful.
I positively despised Adri, Cinder’s step-mother. With the fire of a thousand suns. There were some parts where she just made me so angry that I wished she was a person so I could kick her in the shins. Savagely. Repeatedly. Pearl wasn’t much better, but she didn’t have as much of a part as the step-mother. The way Adri condescended Cinder and treated her like she was filth and nothing but a piece of property made my blood boil. I wanted Cinder to hit her, yell at her, something. But Cinder had a much higher tolerance level than I did, and she took it all in stride. I think that was something else that made me like her, was that she wouldn’t let stuff get to her. Sure, she can’t cry, but she still managed to stay calm when I was seething.
I really liked Cinder’s background and how it tied in with the story. I guessed the connection fairly early on, but it was still a fantastic journey following Cinder as she learned about herself.
Kai was alright, but he didn’t really do anything for me. I did really like Iko and Peony, though.
The only complaint I have was that the world building was a bit iffy at times. In the beginning I had a lot of questions that went unanswered. My first was what is Letumosis? What exactly is it? Where did it come from? How does it work? Most of it was explained as the book went along, and what wasn’t was because they didn’t know much about it, either. So that one was mostly cleared up for me by the end. Mostly.
Some of the descriptions were lacking, too. I would have loved to know exactly what a netscreen is and how it works. I gathered that it was a futuristic TV, but that was about it.
Something that irked me was that Cinder was never described. I know she has a robotic foot and hand (among other things), but I know nothing else of her appearance. What color her hair is, how tall/short, etc.
And what does T.E. stand for? It’s like B.C. or A.D, but I would have liked to know more about that and what happened to change it from years. And what happened to the world? When did androids come around? I’m curious about the time frame for events and that was a major part of the world building missing for me.
My favorite color is red. And I have an obsession with stilettos. :)