Google+ YA Romantics: Just finished reading ... Cinder!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Just finished reading ... Cinder!

What a great way to kick off my 2012 reading.

Cinder
by Marissa Meyer
MacMillan/Feiwel and Friends
January 3, 2012
Source: ARC swapped with a friend



A good retelling stays true to the spirit of the original story while giving it a fresh, original spin. Cinder does exactly that. At its core, Cinderella is a pretty basic tale: with a little help from some friends, an underdog in life and love bests her tormentors and gets her man. To give this simple fairy tale depth, Marissa Meyer layers on both political intrigue (an ailing king, his son, and a power-hungry Lunar queen) and a dystopian twist (a deadly disease).


Cinder, our heroine, was badly injured in a childhood accident and is now a cyborg. She works as a lowly mechanic in the city of New Beijing and could really use a new mechanical foot, but her evil stepmother spends all Cinder's wages on her own two daughters. While working in her shop one day, Cinder meets cute with Crown Prince Kai as he sneaks into her shop with a droid in need of repair. (A bit implausible, but I was still loving it.)

Like its plucky heroine, Cinder is a bit of a mash-up. There are echoes of Star Wars (a droid that harbors a secret message) of the Hunger Games (a young step-sister who is not at all wicked) and of Sailor Moon (a missing lunar princess.) Cinder does throw in a couple of plot twists which I definitely saw coming a mile away, but that didn't spoil my enjoyment of the story.

Another aspect of the story I particularly admired was the way that the author took Prince Charming, a handsome yet bland guy, and transformed him into Prince Kai, a character I thought was the most compelling in the book. Kai has a lot to face: his father's mortality, his own looming responsibility as leader, and an evil, spellbinding villainess. (By the way, I do love a good female villain. I think YA needs more of those!)

I've read that the author is planning three more books that will incorporate the tales of Snow White, Rapunzel and Little Red Riding Hood. I'm glad -- I look forward to returning to the world Meyer created. As I got to Cinder's final chapters, I was really wishing that the four books could be standalones with crossover characters. At least a hint of a happily ever after would have made this remimagined fairy tale perfect and my reading experience complete. Of course, that's not the case -- Cinder ends with the requisite YA cliffhanger, which means I'll have add this book to my ever-growing list of stories that left me dangling. Fine. For a story this engaging and imaginative, I'll happily hang around and wait.

Want to read this book? Win my ARC. Just enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

31 comments:

  1. I'm still reading a copy someone loaned me atm. I do like it a LOT, but for some reason I am finding it a slow read, for me anyways. Probably just not what I'm in the mood for at the moment. But so far its amazing. Great review and I am anxious to see how the author incorporates the other fairytale stories into the remaining bks.

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  2. my fave is Cinderella :D
    yey i would love an ARC of this. been trying to get it haha

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  3. I won this ARC and I have started it but haven't finished it yet! I need to get on it since it came out today! Love the cover and the story so far!

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  4. Ive been seeing this book ALL OVER!!! I want my own <3

    Hebah
    Wovenmyst.com

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  5. Great review! I have heard great things about Cinder - it sounds sooo good. I'm sure the series will be amazing :) but I long to read a standalone.

    I think Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairy tale, though.

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  6. Yay -- more standalones please!!!
    I do love Beauty and the Beast too. I always love the fact that she can fall in love with him despite his scary looks :)

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  7. The Little Mermaid. I love the sea, and I love mermaids. :D

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  8. Hi Tayte -- Happy New Year!
    Since I've seen your blog, not surprised that you love Little Mermaid.

    Hi to DF and Hebah! Thanks for stopping by!

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  9. Thank you for this awesome giveaway. :) I so want to read this book. It looks amazing! One of my fave fairy tales is Rapunzel

    - Beckie

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  10. Thank you for doing this giveaway! My favorite fairy tale is Cinderella.

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  11. Beauty and the Beast. First, because I loved the Disney movie--Belle loves books...she must be a kindred spirit! Second, I saw the musical at the Kennedy Center--it was such a magical experience!

    Shanan
    http://thebookaddictnet.blogspot.com/

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  12. Loved the review!! I'm really intrigued by the stuff about the droid. You don't see too much of that in YA. As for fairy takes, my favorite would definitely be Snow White (I heart the dwarfs!!). So much so that I wrote an alternate version of Snow White last year...and I don't have a creative bone in my body.

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  13. I do like Cinderella :) Thanks for the giveaway
    juliecookies(at)gmail.com

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  14. My favourite fairy tale is a difficult one. I just finished studying Children's Fiction as a module at University, so my view of fairy tales has changed somewhat.
    I'd say Little Red Riding Hood is my favourite though, simply because I enjoy Angela Carter's version.

    I've been after this book for a while, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed for this one! :)

    Dani @ Pen to Paper
    P.s. Please do hop over and enter my giveaways - there are three running at the moment :)

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  15. I liked Snow White the best I think :)

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  16. Thisis book looks great!!! So want to read it! Thanks for the giveaway! I need to read Cinder, I like how its a modern retelling of Cindderella!

    Patrick@http://wwwthebookshelves.blogspot.com

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  17. I would say that Beauty and the Beast was my favorite simply because Disney movie was amazing. The story is really amazing too and not one of those typical stories where the girl just has to be saved or needs to change.

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  18. My favorite fairytale would either be Aladdin's story or Beauty and the Beast. I just adore both much too much for my own good. (:

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  19. Beauty and the Beast. I've read several retellings but the Disney Movie has got to be the best thing ever!

    Thanks for the giveaway. I would love to win.

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  20. Excellent review! Beauty and the Beast has always been my favorite. :) Thanks for the giveaway.
    Randi M

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  21. I've been trying to get my hands on this book like forever! I'm about to suck it up and just buy it now that's its released!

    Katrina
    Kindred Dreamheart

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  22. My favorite fairy tale is Rapunzel. Thanks for the Giveaway!

    Katrina
    Kindred Dreamheart

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  23. Great Giveaway! I loved cinderella when I was younger and will definitely buy this book if I don't win the giveaway. Thanks for the opportunity :)

    obsessionsofabookaholic@hotmail.com

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  24. my favorite fairy tail is Beauty and the Beast! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  25. This one definitely sounds interesting :o)

    My fav fairy tale is Beauty & the Beast, with the 'sub-selection' being East o' the Sun, West o' the Moon ((Norse version, Prince is a POLAR BEAR!)) :oD

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  26. Little Red Riding Hood is a pretty great fairy tale but for romance, I do love Beauty and the Beast. I have heard so many great things about this book so thank you for this fabulous giveaway opportunity!

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  27. I would have to say that my favorite Fairy Tale is Alice in Wonderland.

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  28. I can't wait to read Cinder. I love retold fairy tales!

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  29. I love fairytales! My favorite is Cinderella and Rapunzel! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  30. My sister read Cinder and told me it isn't that great. However, since I love YA, I'm still going to read it. Sometime. Soon. Yaaas. :D

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