Friday, December 27, 2013

Book 121: Cinder

This was so good - I can't believe it took me this long to read it, despite the positive reviews.  Honestly, I think I wasn't quite paying as much attention to the reviews as I should have so I was basically hearing "future, cyborg, Cinderella" - except somehow in my head, cyborg kept getting turned into robot.  As much as I like fairy tales and fairy tale retellings (in fact, I just gave my boyfriend's nephew a copy of Rumpelstiltskin, and the only reason I didn't get him a whole Grimm's Fairy Tale collection is because I thought the collections are written for an older audience than a three year old), the idea of a robot Cinderella didn't appeal to me.  Once I realized that it was about a cyborg Cinderella, ie a human with mechanical parts, I was much more intrigued.
Cinder is a cyborg, and while her stepsisters are concerned with balls and clothes, her guardian/step mother has Cinder working and basically mistreats as in all versions of Cinderella.  The younger step sister is actually very sweet and has a good relationship with Cinder.  Meyer's future world is very well developed, and Earth has gone through a few more world wars so that there are now commonwealths which seem to correspond with some of the major world powers of today.  Earth has also colonized the moon, but now these Lunars are actually a threat to the well-being of Earth and Prince Kai is struggling to balance the peace with them while also staying loyal to his values.  There is also an incurable virus that plagues the world, and Cinder's stepmother volunteers Cinder to be part of the medical experiments conducted in search of a cure.
Basically, there are quite a few different pieces and threads working together in this, and the novel hints at things for the readers to put together before Cinder does.  I enjoyed how she corresponded the fairy tale characters in her novel, and one character introduced towards the end certainly seemed like an allusion to Rapunzel.  While Cinder and Kai begin to feel an interest in each other - he is the prince after all - there is much more going on than simply a love story, and I enjoyed that quite a lot.  I'm definitely looking forward to the rest of the series.

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