Author: Marissa Meyer
Publication: Feiwel & Friends (January 3, 2012)
Description: 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.
My Thoughts: I have just finished my favorite book of the year. Cinder is a re-imagining of the Cinderella story told in a future Earth where a terrible disease is running rampant and the Earth is under threat from the residents of the moon who happen to be able to use mind control.
Cinder is a cyborg as a result of a childhood accident. She was adopted by a scientist who then died and left her to the less than tender mercies of a stepmother who despises cyborgs and who uses her as an unappreciated servant. Cinder herself is a gifted mechanic but is also ashamed to be a cyborg. When Prince Kai, heir to the throne of the Eastern Commonwealth, comes to her to repair a broken android, they form a friendship. Though Cinder tries to put him off when he wants her to attend his ball. She knows her stepmother would never allow it and society would not allow a cyborg to attend.
When one of Cinder's stepsisters and only friend comes down with the plague, Cinder's stepmother donates Cinder to the cause of medical research. The head doctor has been trying to find a cure and using cyborgs to try out the various serums. He is stepping up his research because the Emperor has come down with the disease. When he sees Cinder he knows that she is someone he has been searching for. He determines that Cinder is immune to the plague and is a lunar herself.
The queen of the Lunars wants to marry young Kai and offers to provide a cure to the disease as incentive. It is her first step to conquering the Earth. She is a ruthless woman who is rumored to have killed her sister and her sister's heirs in order to take the throne herself. There has been a long-standing rumor that the former queen's daughter, Princess Selene, did not die but was taken off to Earth. Many people are looking for her in the hopes that she can defeat the evil Queen Levana. Queen Levana would like to find her too.
This was a great story filled with action and intrigue. It is also peopled with fascinating characters. Cinder and Kai are both people who seem to live beyond the pages of this book. The world is well-drawn too. I look forward to reading the rest of this trilogy to see what happens. I recommend this story to science fiction fans and adventure fans. They won't be disappointed.
Kai set his jaw and fixed his gaze on Torin, the man who had been his father's adviser since before Kai was born. Even now, standing in the same room with Torin made him feel like a child, gave a peculiar urge to be unruly. He wondered if he would ever get over that.I received this copy for review from Macmillan. You can buy your copy here.