Sunday, September 2, 2012

Cinder | Book Review

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A dystopian retelling of Cinderella wherein she is a cyborg living in futuristic China?! UM, stop reading my diary, Marissa Meyer!

I thought this was a good idea when I read the blurb, but it still wasn't that pressing of a need to read it. I finally bought the audiobook, and dang, do I wish I had read this sooner! This book hit all my buttons. I love-love-loved it and that ending came WAY too fast for my taste. I'll be eagerly awaiting Scarlet every day until its February release date.

Here's my take.
Writing technique: ★★★1/2 Meyer did an amazing job of making Cinder's world real and interesting. Despite all the tech speak, I felt I followed along with the cyborg and android descriptions well without it feeling too much like manual. I loved the characters she created in Cinder, Kai, and Iko (especially Iko). She writes well without being too fluffy.

Character development: ★★★ Cinder's discovery of what and who she is in this story is fun. Predictable, but interesting nonetheless. She is a lot more than the frumpy helpless step-daughter of the traditional story. She's strong and quirky and determined. Kai also was far more dimensional than Prince Charming (but really - that's not hard to do!). But his character development didn't quite resolve in this story. I look forward to see what he's like in Scarlet.

Plot/Story development: ★★★★ I looooved that this was NOT really a love story. It's a cyborg story, and an alien story (think The V!!), and a dystopia story with the constant threat of Plague and War... Much of this book's plot was predictable and obvious, but much wasn't. And it was still very enjoyable to watch everything unfold. I really wish it had ended with just the tiniest bit more resolution. That's a weird place to end a story if you ask me.

Message/Theme: ★★★ Hmmm... There could be a message against racism in here (cyborgs and Lunars are highly discriminated against). There is of course the Do The Right Thing Even If It's Dangerous message. And the Embrace Who You Are message. And the Stand Up For What You Believe In and Don't Give In To Bullies Even If They're Bigger Than You. You know, the usual.

Audiobook Performance: ★★★★ Rebecca Soler was a great narrator. She perfect Cinder's sarcasm and wit as well as Iko's and Peony's animated quirkiness and Audrey's, Pearl's, and Lavanna's pure evilness and Dr. Erland's accented eagerness and Kai's normal teenage boy-ness and every android's mechanical drone-iness... She was a stellar voice to the characters. I only wish she had read the more actiony scenes with more urgency.

Overall: ★★★★★ I adored this novel. I swallowed it whole. I love-love-love it. I know if I average my more objective ratings above, I will not get 5 stars, but I loved it too much to give it less. Subjectively, this is a new favorite.

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