Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Cinder is the story of a cyborg mechanic in futuristic New Beijing. Captivating already.
Now, it also has other elements: the stepmother (legal guardian), handsome prince, a ball. This is Cinderella, but not at all as you know it.

As an avid consumer of fairy-tale adoptions, both in literature and film, I was always going to go for this one. But the thing that really got me wanting to read it it the setting, and in fact the general premise of it. What makes it so different from other adaptations is that it is futuristic (kind of like in A Long, Long Sleep, but better). The idea of Cinderella being a cyborg in New Beijing is wonderful, especially as we get to know the perks and difficulties that come with it. Throw in a few androids, portable screens, I.D chips and were peachy for the future. These ideas are very, very well thought through, and for such a small book I am very impressed with how much was explained, although I would like to see more explanation of what happened to the world in the next few books. The ideas of the futuristic earth aren't really that far out of reach, which I love.
Image from Google.
The characters have the depth that is needed to really bring this story to life, with Cinder far more feisty and interesting than her Disney counterpart. (I was always very disappointed with Cinderella, because she let things happen to her, and gave up far too early for my liking. If it were me I'd have moved out of that house waay back). The prince has a far larger role to play than in original stories, with emotional turmoil and the weight of a kingdom on his shoulders he has his work cut out.

The themes in this are wonderful. It has all the usual that you would expect: Love, life issues, death, good and evil, and so on, but they are looked at in ways that I've rarely seen before. It makes them more interesting.
Then theres the other themes: duty, loyalty, betrayal, freedom, guilt, lies, finding who you are, all weaving into Cinder's life to make a truly complex book.

The narrative is good, the story completely sucks you in within the first few pages. The plot points, revelations and details are executed well. I think that this book is more aimed at young adult readers, although I would still recommend this to adults and slightly younger teens too.
Also, look out for other fairy tale references.

The themes are good, the heroine is believable (even if she is a cyborg) and the twists are cutting, so I'm giving this book 5/5 stars.

Marissa Meyers Website
Marissa Meyers Journal
Reviews from Goodreads.

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