Book Review: Marissa Meyer – Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)

Cinder is a wonderfully futuristic spin on the old fairy tale we have loved. Cinderella meets Guardians of the Galaxy in this splendid tale of good versus evil.

Title: Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publish Date: Jan 03, 2012

Goodreads: 4.14/5
Barnes and Nobele: 4.5/5
A New York Time's Bestselling Series


Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, 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.


Characters: Stars 4.0

The characters are incredibly loveable! Unlike in the original fairy tale, Cinder is no pushover. As a cyborg, she is treated as a second-class citizen and by law, she has to answer to a guardian. Her stepmother enslaves her and takes away all her earnings from the booth where she works as a mechanic. But after, the incident with Peony, she quickly changes character and starts to fight back (in words) with her stepmother. Meyer effectively develops her character in every chapter making them learn, grow and become braver to confront their conflicts.

Iko and Peony! Shit. At some point I saw it coming but I brushed it aside thinking that this is supposed to be a fairy tale, then BOOM! I just cried. Meyer knows how to attach readers to a certain character then completely turn them down.

Style and Pacing: Stars 4.0

Marissa Meyer had me awed at how incredible she wrote mechanical details of the world of New Beijing. In science fiction, in spite of bombarding pages with mind blowing scientific terms, it is also important to note that your target audience should be able to comprehend what you are trying to depict. That being said, Meyer did a great balance of both and did well in explaining the function of every nut and bolt from cyborgs to androids and from cars to hovers.

Meyer used a lot of foreshadowing in the beginning of the novel. A missing princess, an incurable disease, a friendly doctor. In a way, I was mildly disappointed at how predictable the story flowed. At the mention of those things, I knew right away what was in store. Also, around the middle part of the novel after Peony’s incident (I won’t spoil. *wink*), I thought the story lost its pace and picked up again at the ball.

Originality: Stars 3.0

The story is still just a different version of the original fairy tale. However, Meyer still puts her own flavor for the readers to love, like the sarcastic nature of the characters and the coming of the dictatorial queen.

Also, the idea of a different civilization of humans on the moon that had evolved through the years of their residence there, is not that original, but still amazing. I’m a great sci-fi fan after all.

Personal Rating: Stars 5.0

I almost cried in the café while I was finishing this!

Midway through the book, I noticed that some characters started to sound the same. Cinder and Prince Kai sounded similar already – brave, sarcastic but mildly romantic. A few other characters started to sound sarcastic at times and I felt as if it was the author speaking already and not the character.

The ball – the defining moment in the book and the most significant event in the fairy tale. From the dance to Cinder’s escape, it was unbelievably thrilling. You’d think people had made enough versions of this scene, but Marissa Meyer gave us a new twist in the story which readers will surely weep about.

I loved how Meyer ended the book. She answered a lot of questions that were raised in the book yet leave out enough things to make you read the next one.

OVERALL: Stars 4.0

Awesome read! Geekish-ly romantic. I’d definitely recommend this to girls who like sci-fi with a touch of romance. I will surely follow the series!



“Even in the Future the Story Begins with Once Upon a Time.”

“I’m sure I’ll feel much more grateful when I find a guy who thinks complex wiring in a girl is a turn-on.”

“Vanity is a factor, but it is more a question of control. It is easier to trick others into perceiving you as beautiful if you can convince yourself you are beautiful. But mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.”

“Prince Kai! Check my fan, I think I’m overheating.”


3 thoughts on “Book Review: Marissa Meyer – Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)

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