Cinder by Marissa Meyer is a young adult fantasy set in the futuristic society of New Beijing, a world on the verge of destruction. Fighting against a deadly plague and a ruthless ruler from space, Prince Kai is in a race against time to save his people. The last thing he needs is another complication.
Treated as a second class citizen by her selfish stepmother, who prefers her own two daughters (sound familiar?) Cinder is a gifted mechanic with a mysterious past. She also happens to be a cyborg, and NOBODY in New Beijing trusts cyborgs. When Cinder unwillingly uncovers a deception that goes beyond anything she could have ever imagined, she suddenly becomes the one person who can save them all. But is she strong enough?
“They say you’re the best mechanic in New Beijing. I was expecting an old man.”
Gone is the gentle, mild-mannered heroine we have come to expect from Cinderella. Taking her place is a badass cyborg fighting for freedom in a futuristic world against a queen who wants her dead. Throw in a forbidden attraction to a ‘charming’ prince and mysterious blood that protects against an incurable disease, and Cinder delivers in a major way.
Chances are I’m one of the few left who hasn’t already finished this young adult fantasy. There isn’t much to say except read it. Seriously. This book is amazing.
This brings me to the first location of importance: The Marketplace
The queen’s glamour-her ability to make people see her divinely beautiful by manipulating their brain waves-could not translate over the netscreens, therefore she never allowed herself to be seen over them.
Meeting Prince Kai in the marketplace created an uneasiness within Cinder that she couldn’t explain. Why was she being asked to fix an ancient android that instead should be recycled for parts? The Prince’s explanation doesn’t make sense, but Cinder wasn’t in the position to question him or his real reasons for hiring her.
Maybe a small part of Cinder doesn’t care what Prince Kai’s motives are. After all, he’s easy on the eyes, and she actually enjoys talking with him. But what will happen if he finds out she’s not normal? Will he still want to talk to her then?
This brings me to the Second location of importance: The Junkyard
“I’m sure I’ll feel much more grateful when I find a guy who thinks complex wiring is a turn-on.”
It’s clear from the first few pages that Cinder carries around a lot of emotional baggage. She tries to hide her feelings of rejection and hurt with sarcasm, but people can easily see through this protection method. Thinking that no guy will ever love her, especially not the Prince, is second nature for Cinder.
Exploring the junkyard with her sister Peony was supposed to be quick. Cinder just needed some parts for her stepmother’s bidding. But complications arise as they search through the wreckage. Suddenly Peony is placed in an unthinkable situation, and Cinder finally has a way to escape. But at what cost?
This brings me to the third location of importance: New Beijing labs
“No, I think this is the perfect time for paranoia and distrust.”
Desperately attempting to find a cure for his people, Prince Kai is torn between doing what’s expected and following his own heart. He doesn’t trust the Lunar Queen or her motives, but she could be their only chance for survival.
Prince Kai’s top scientists are working around the clock to stop the spread of the plague. But why are they using cyborgs as test cases?