Marissa Meyer’s debut novel Cinder hits shelves today and Christine and I are here to tell you how much we loved it, and how much we think you’re going to love it!
Caitlin: When I first heard about this book I didn’t think I’d like it. I’m not a big fan of books with main characters that are mostly robots/creations that then have to examine the moral/ethical/blah blah blah question of whether they are human or not.
But this book wasn’t like that at all! This book was just fun. And awesome. And I loved it to bits!
Christine: I’m the complete opposite. I’ve always been fascinated with cyborgs, automans and basically anything robotic in nature. You can blame my background in sci-fi books and shows on this (The Borg, anyone?). Give me a robot, hopefully blowing stuff up, and I’m happy. The concept and world behind Cinder drew me in from the beginning.
I loved how Marissa Meyer created this futuristic world of peace and prosperity, but with an underlying dark side to it that came about if you were part cyborg. It didn’t matter how much, either. The cyborgs in this world are considered second class and looked upon as such. I felt bad for Cinder, who had no choice in the matter, having no memory of her life before she was part-machine.
Caitlin: Yes. There was so much going on in this book. There was the mystery behind Cinder, the plague decimating the population, the looming threat from the powerful race of mutants living on the moon, the class bigotry and..well…just one character’s search for family a belonging.
And I just wanted to say, I AM a fan of robots blowing stuff up and being kick ass. I’m not so much a fan of them being all existential and wondering about whether their “life” means anything.
Christine: Oh, come on? You don’t enjoy Data’s little human moments on Star Trek?
Caitlin: I enjoy them in a comical sense, sure. But I’ve seen/read/whatever enough of robots/cyborgs/test tube babies/whatever wondering if they are really human. It’s gotten boring for me. But, like I said, Cinder is nothing like this so….
Christine: Gotcha. It’s not like that. You will notice several of the same themes and events that happen in the story of Cinderella that we all know by heart, but there are enough differences — especially with Cinder herself and her background — that it’s not completely predictable.
Caitlin: I LOVED the orange, pumpkin car! I don’t know why I just liked it better than any of the other fairy tale references.
Christine: That said, I think we need to discuss Prince Kai for a second. How adorable and persistent was he? I knew I wasn’t supposed to get attached to him — it is the first in a four-part series, after all, but I did. I got attached. And that last scene with them… *cries*
Caitlin: Prince Kai was awesome. I loved how he was just a regular guy forced into this situation where he has all this power but then, he doesn’t really have any power at all. And you could really tell how frustrated he was. But I liked that…erm…I don’t know how to say this without spoilers but I liked the choice he made at the end regarding…well…things. It showed that he wasn’t content to remain powerless or become a pawn.
Christine: I also liked his choice near the end. Good for him. And the very end, when certain things are revealed and it sets up the next book… I want to read the rest of this series SO much. Also, I really want to know more about the Lunar people and how that came about.
Caitlin: I’m too am eager for the rest of the series. I know each book is going to feature a different fairy tale heroine and I want to see how she brings each story into the over arching plot and how she balances it all out and how we still get enough Cinder and Kai.
We should also talk about how awesome Cinder herself is. I mean, she’s an amnesiac, cyborg mechanic with a crush on the prince of the Empire and has a strange robot best friend who says the weirdest things! I think we need a completely separate book about the adventures of Cinder and Iko. It would be the best book ever.
Christine: I’m pretty sure that’s what the next book is going to be about. At least, it should be.
Cinder is a great character. She’s compassionate, hard-working, intelligent and strong-willed. She’s had to be strong, with how other people treat her when they find out she’s cyborg, but she’s managed to maintain the best parts of humanity in the face of adversary. That’s what makes her so compelling to read about. Her background is fascinating, but just a small part of who she is and who she’ll eventually become. Well, who I’m hoping she’ll become, anyway.
Caitlin: Why do we have to wait so long for the next one? I hate waiting.
Though, luckily for us, Marissa Meyer used to write fanfiction so there’s a whole plethora of her writing available for us to read here. Of particular note is The House on Thornrose Lane. It too is based on fairy tales and really showcases how much Marissa loves them and has studied them. And if you missed it, we totally posted the best ever interview with Marissa yesterday!