“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.”
– Taken from Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11235712-cinder)
I’m not overly fond of fairy tales retellings. Because of this, I was not exactly interested in reading Cinder. However, after it was finally chosen as the book of the month in the Goodreads group I participate in, after months in the running, I decided to give in to the hype. And, this time, I have to admit that the hype was right.
In case the title hasn’t made it obvious, Cinder is a retelling of Cinderella. All the basic elements are in there, the evil stepmother, the rejected orphan. There is, however, a major difference from the fairy tale: the world building. While the original fairy tale is set in a medieval world, Cinder is set in a futuristic world. Our main character, Cinder, is a cyborg and, because of this, is rejected not only by her mother, but by society. There is also a mysterious disease that kills every single patient and a very ambitious Lunar queen.
The way the author chose to retell Cinderella’s tale made for a very interesting it. While the core elements were present, she added new elements to the story, and completely changed the world building. As for the plot itself, some events were quite predictable, but that didn’t make the reading any less enjoyable.
The characters were also very nicely done; the evil stepmother was adequately evil; the prince was very charming. Cinder, however, came across as being stronger and tougher than the Cinderella portrayed in the Disney animation, especially considering there is no fairy godmother here. There was also Iko, the comic relief of the book. Really, her lines are fantastic (‘I do not have a faulty personality chip’).
This book ended in a bit of cliffhanger, and I felt relieved that the next book is already out and I already have it, which means that I can read it whenever I like (April or May, most likely).
Rating: 4 out of 5