Author: Marissa Meyer
Provided Synopsis: 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.
Review: Cinder is the futuristic re-telling of the Cinderella fairytale that has our heroine as a cyborg. Set in the future (126 years after the peace between nations following WWIV to be exact) in New Beijing, the story focuses on Cinder, a skilled mechanic. Why is she skilled? Because she is a cyborg and knows how to fix her own parts. Prejudice surrounds those humans who have been spared from death to become cyborgs, however; those who know that Cinder is a cyborg often treat her as if she is sub-human and our heroine goes through lengths to not draw attention to herself.
One of those people who she does not want know of her condition is Prince Kai, our hero. The Crown Prince of New Beijing needs to have one of his androids fixed, hears that Cinder is the best mechanic in the city, and goes to find her to secure her services. A friendship grows between them. I personally loved all of their interactions, as well as the normalcy Kai brought to Cinder’s life. He may be a Prince but he is in no way snobbish or unlikable.
To add further richness to this tale there is a deadly plague that has been ravishing the face of earth for years. Once you contract the plague, it is known that you will die because there is no known cure. So what happens when Cinder’s little step-sister, and the only member of her family who loves her, contracts this disease? What lengths will Cinder travel to in order to save her sister? What will Cinder discover about herself?
I don’t believe that it is easy to give a fresh take to such a well-loved and well-known fairytale, but Marissa Meyer excels on her mission. All the elements of the classic fairytale are there, but they in no way control the story! Instead, they are elements to enhance it and gave the writer ways to play with her creativity in this science-fiction world of her own making. It’s no secret that I adore world building, and the setting of New Beijing and the Earth of the future was wonderful to explore. A bonus to this story was also the Sailor Moon vibe that I seemed to get from it. As a Sailor Moon fan since childhood I was able to gobble up the elements that dealt with the moon kingdom of Lunar and it’s role in the political climate of this futuristic earth.
Bottom line: give this book a try. I don’t think anyone will regret it, and I am so excited to get the second book in this series once it is released next week.