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Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

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Cinder: Book One of the Lunar Chronicles

4.5/5 (739 valutazioni)
464 pagine
6 ore
Jan 3, 2012


The #1 New York Times Bestselling Series!

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.

Marissa Meyer on Cinder, writing, and leading men
Which of your characters is most like you?
I wish I could say that I'm clever and mechanically-minded like Cinder, but no—I can't fix anything. I'm much more like Cress, who makes a brief cameo in Cinder and then takes a more starring role in the third book. She's a romantic and a daydreamer and maybe a little on the naïve side—things that could be said about me too—although she does find courage when it's needed most. I think we'd all like to believe we'd have that same inner strength if we ever needed it.
Where do you write?
I have a home office that I've decorated with vintage fairy tale treasures that I've collected (my favorite is a Cinderella cookie jar from the forties) and NaNoWriMo posters, but sometimes writing there starts to feel too much like work. On those days I'll write in bed or take my laptop out for coffee or lunch.
If you were stranded on a desert island, which character from Cinder would you want with you?
Cinder, definitely! She has an internet connection in her brain, complete with the ability to send and receive comms (which are similar to e-mails). We'd just have enough time to enjoy some fresh coconut before we were rescued.
The next book in the Lunar Chronicles is called Scarlet, and is about Little Red Riding Hood. What is appealing to you most about this character as you work on the book?
Scarlet is awesome—she's very independent, a bit temperamental, and has an outspokenness that tends to get her in trouble sometimes. She was raised by her grandmother, an ex-military pilot who now owns a small farm in southern France, who not only taught Scarlet how to fly a spaceship and shoot a gun, but also to have a healthy respect and appreciation for nature. I guess that's a lot of things that appeal to me about her, but she's been a really fun character to write! (The two leading men in Scarlet, Wolf and Captain Thorne, aren't half bad either.)

Jan 3, 2012

Informazioni sull'autore

Marissa Meyer is the #1 New York Times–bestselling author of the Renegades Trilogy, The Lunar Chronicles series, the Wires and Nerve graphic novels, and The Lunar Chronicles Coloring Book. Her first standalone novel, Heartless, was also a #1 New York Times bestseller. Marissa created and hosts a podcast called The Happy Writer. She lives in Tacoma, Washington, with her husband and their two daughters.

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Anteprima del libro

Cinder - Marissa Meyer


Book One

They took away her beautiful clothes, dressed her in an old gray smock, and gave her wooden shoes.

Chapter One

THE SCREW THROUGH CINDER’S ANKLE HAD RUSTED, THE engraved cross marks worn to a mangled circle. Her knuckles ached from forcing the screwdriver into the joint as she struggled to loosen the screw one gritting twist after another. By the time it was extracted far enough for her to wrench free with her prosthetic steel hand, the hairline threads had been stripped clean.

Tossing the screwdriver onto the table, Cinder gripped her heel and yanked the foot from its socket. A spark singed her fingertips and she jerked away, leaving the foot to dangle from a tangle of red and yellow wires.

She slumped back with a relieved groan. A sense of release hovered at the end of those wires—freedom. Having loathed the too-small foot for four years, she swore to never put the piece of junk back on again. She just hoped Iko would be back soon with its replacement.

Cinder was the only full-service mechanic at New Beijing’s weekly market. Without a sign, her booth hinted at her trade only by the shelves of stock android parts that crowded the walls. It was squeezed into a shady cove between a used netscreen dealer and a silk merchant, both of whom frequently complained about the tangy smell of metal and grease that came from Cinder’s booth, even though it was usually disguised by the aroma of honey buns from the bakery across the square. Cinder knew they really just didn’t like being next to her.

A stained tablecloth divided Cinder from browsers as they shuffled past. The square was filled with shoppers and hawkers, children and noise. The bellows of men as they bargained with robotic shopkeepers, trying to talk the computers down from their desired profit margins. The hum of ID scanners and monotone voice receipts as money changed accounts. The netscreens that covered every building and filled the air with the chatter of advertisements, news reports, gossip.

Cinder’s auditory interface dulled the noise into a static thrumming, but today one melody lingered above the rest that she couldn’t drown out. A ring of children were standing just outside her booth, trilling—Ashes, ashes, we all fall down!—and then laughing hysterically as they collapsed to the pavement.

A smile tugged at Cinder’s lips. Not so much at the nursery rhyme, a phantom song about pestilence and death that had regained popularity in the past decade. The song itself made her squeamish. But she did love the glares from passersby as the giggling children fell over in their paths. The inconvenience of having to swarm around the writhing bodies stirred grumbles from the shoppers, and Cinder adored the children for it.

"Sunto! Sunto!"

Cinder’s amusement wilted. She spotted Chang Sacha, the baker, pushing through the crowd in her flour-coated apron. Sunto, come here! I told you not to play so close to—

Sacha met Cinder’s gaze, knotted her lips, then grabbed her son by the arm and spun away. The boy whined, dragging his feet as Sacha ordered him to stay closer to their booth. Cinder wrinkled her nose at the baker’s retreating back. The remaining children fled into the crowd, taking their bright laughter with them.

It’s not like wires are contagious, Cinder muttered to her empty booth.

With a spine-popping stretch, she pulled her dirty fingers through her hair, combing it up into a messy tail, then grabbed her blackened work gloves. She covered her steel hand first, and though her right palm began to sweat immediately inside the thick material, she felt more comfortable with the gloves on, hiding the plating of her left hand. She stretched her fingers wide, working out the cramp that had formed at the fleshy base of her thumb from clenching the screwdriver, and squinted again into the city square. She spotted plenty of stocky white androids in the din, but none of them Iko.

Sighing, Cinder bent over the toolbox beneath the worktable. After digging through the jumbled mess of screwdrivers and wrenches, she emerged with the fuse puller that had been long buried at the bottom. One by one, she disconnected the wires that still linked her foot and ankle, each spurting a tiny spark. She couldn’t feel them through the gloves, but her retina display helpfully informed her with blinking red text that she was losing connection to the limb.

With a yank of the last wire, her foot clattered to the concrete.

The difference was instant. For once in her life, she felt…weightless.

She made room for the discarded foot on the table, setting it up like a shrine amid the wrenches and lug nuts, before hunkering over her ankle again and cleaning the grime from the socket with an old rag.


Cinder jerked, her head smacking the underside of the table. She shoved back from the desk, her scowl landing first on a lifeless android that sat squat on her worktable and then on the man behind it. She was met with startled copper-brown eyes and black hair that hung past his ears and lips that every girl in the country had admired a thousand times.

Her scowl vanished.

His own surprise was short-lived, melting into an apology. I’m sorry, he said. I didn’t realize anyone was back there.

Cinder barely heard him above the blankness in her mind. With her heartbeat gathering speed, her retina display scanned his features, so familiar from years spent watching him on the netscreens. He seemed taller in real life and a gray hooded sweatshirt was like none of the fine clothes he usually made appearances in, but still, it took only 2.6 seconds for Cinder’s scanner to measure the points of his face and link his image to the net database. Another second and the display informed her of what she already knew; details scribbled across the bottom of her vision in a stream of green text.


ID #0082719057

BORN 7 APR 108 T.E.



Cinder launched up from her chair, nearly toppling over when she forgot about her missing limb. Steadying herself with both hands on the table, she managed an awkward bow. The retina display sank out of sight.

Your Highness, she stammered, head lowered, glad that he couldn’t see her empty ankle behind the tablecloth.

The prince flinched and cast a glance over his shoulder before hunching toward her. Maybe, um…—he pulled his fingers across his lips—on the Highness stuff?

Wide-eyed, Cinder forced a shaky nod. Right. Of course. How—can I—are you— She swallowed, the words sticking like bean paste to her tongue.

I’m looking for a Linh Cinder, said the prince. Is he around?

Cinder dared to lift one stabilizing hand from the table, using it to tug the hem of her glove higher on her wrist. Staring at the prince’s chest, she stammered, I-I’m Linh Cinder.

Her eyes followed his hand as he planted it on top of the android’s bulbous head.

"You’re Linh Cinder?"

Yes, Your High— She bit down on her lip.

The mechanic?

She nodded. How can I help you?

Instead of answering, the prince bent down, craning his neck so that she had no choice but to meet his eyes, and dashed a grin at her. Her heart winced.

The prince straightened, forcing her gaze to follow him.

You’re not quite what I was expecting.

Well you’re hardly—what I—um. Unable to hold his gaze, Cinder reached for the android and pulled it to her side of the table. What seems to be wrong with the android, Your Highness?

The android looked like it had just stepped off the conveyer belt, but Cinder could tell from the mock-feminine shape that it was an outdated model. The design was sleek, though, with a spherical head atop a pear-shaped body and a glossy white finish.

I can’t get her to turn on, said Prince Kai, watching as Cinder examined the robot. She was working fine one day, and the next, nothing.

Cinder turned the android around so its sensor light faced the prince. She was glad to have routine tasks for her hands and routine questions for her mouth—something to focus on so she wouldn’t get flustered and lose control of her brain’s net connection again. Have you had problems with her before?

No. She gets a monthly checkup from the royal mechanics, and this is the first real problem she’s ever had.

Leaning forward, Prince Kai picked up Cinder’s small metal foot from the worktable, turning it curiously over in his palms. Cinder tensed, watching as he peered into the wire-filled cavity, fiddled with the flexible joints of the toes. He used the too-long sleeve of his sweatshirt to polish off a smudge.

Aren’t you hot? Cinder said, instantly regretting the question when his attention returned to her.

For the briefest moment, the prince almost looked embarrassed. Dying, he said, but I’m trying to be inconspicuous.

Cinder considered telling him it wasn’t working but thought better of it. The lack of a throng of screaming girls surrounding her booth was probably evidence that it was working better than she suspected. Instead of looking like a royal heartthrob, he just looked crazy.

Clearing her throat, Cinder refocused on the android. She found the nearly invisible latch and opened its back panel. Why aren’t the royal mechanics fixing her?

They tried but couldn’t figure it out. Someone suggested I bring her to you. He set the foot down and turned his attention to the shelves of old and battered parts—parts for androids, hovers, netscreens, portscreens. Parts for cyborgs. They say you’re the best mechanic in New Beijing. I was expecting an old man.

Do they? she murmured.

He wasn’t the first to voice surprise. Most of her customers couldn’t fathom how a teenage girl could be the best mechanic in the city, and she never broadcast the reason for her talent. The fewer people who knew she was cyborg, the better. She was sure she’d go mad if all the market shopkeepers looked at her with the same disdain as Chang Sacha did.

She nudged some of the android’s wires aside with her pinkie. Sometimes they just get worn out. Maybe it’s time to upgrade to a new model.

I’m afraid I can’t do that. She contains top-secret information. It’s a matter of national security that I retrieve it…before anyone else does.

Fingers stalling, Cinder glanced up at him.

He held her gaze a full three seconds before his lips twitched. I’m just joking. Nainsi was my first android. It’s sentimental.

An orange light flickered in the corner of Cinder’s vision. Her optobionics had picked up on something, though she didn’t know what—an extra swallow, a too-quick blink, a clenching of the prince’s jaw.

She was used to the little orange light. It came up all the time.

It meant that someone was lying.

National security, she said. Funny.

The prince listed his head, as if challenging her to contradict him. A strand of black hair fell into his eyes. Cinder looked away.

Tutor8.6 model, she said, reading the faintly lit panel inside the plastic cranium. The android was nearly twenty years old. Ancient for an android. She looks to be in pristine condition.

Raising her fist, she thunked the android hard on the side of its head, barely catching it before it toppled over onto the table. The prince jumped.

Cinder set the android back on its treads and jabbed the power button but nothing happened. You’d be surprised how often that works.

The prince let out a single, awkward chuckle. Are you sure you’re Linh Cinder? The mechanic?

Cinder! I’ve got it! Iko wheeled out of the crowd and up to the worktable, her blue sensor flashing. Lifting one pronged hand, she slammed a brand-new steel-plated foot onto the desk, in the shadow of the prince’s android. It’s a huge improvement over the old one, only lightly used, and the wiring looks compatible as is. Plus, I was able to get the dealer down to just 600 univs.

Panic jolted through Cinder. Still balancing on her human leg, she snatched the foot off the table and dropped it behind her. Good work, Iko. Nguyen-shìfu will be delighted to have a replacement foot for his escort-droid.

Iko’s sensor dimmed. Nguyen-shìfu? I don’t compute.

Smiling through locked teeth, Cinder gestured at the prince. Iko, please pay your respects to our customer. She lowered her voice. His Imperial Highness.

Iko craned her head, aiming the round sensor up at the prince, who towered more than three feet above her. The light flared as her scanner recognized him. Prince Kai, she said, her metallic voice squeaking. You are even more handsome in person.

Cinder’s stomach twisted in embarrassment, even as the prince laughed.

That’s enough, Iko. Get in the booth.

Iko obeyed, pushing aside the tablecloth and ducking under the table.

You don’t see a personality like that every day, said Prince Kai, leaning against the booth’s door frame as if he brought androids to the market all the time. Did you program her yourself?

Believe it or not, she came that way. I suspect a programming error, which is probably why my stepmother got her so cheap.

I do not have a programming error! said Iko from behind her.

Cinder met the prince’s gaze, was caught momentarily dazzled by another easy laugh, and ducked her head back behind his android.

So what do you think? he asked.

I’ll need to run her diagnostics. It will take me a few days, maybe a week. Tucking a strand of hair behind one ear, Cinder sat down, grateful to give her leg a rest while she examined the android’s innards. She knew she must be breaking some rule of etiquette, but the prince didn’t seem to mind as he tipped forward, watching her hands.

Do you need payment up front?

He held his left wrist toward her, embedded with his ID chip, but Cinder waved a gloved hand at him. No, thank you. It will be my honor.

Prince Kai looked about to protest but then let his hand fall. I don’t suppose there’s any hope of having her done before the festival?

Cinder shut the android’s panel. I don’t think that will be a problem. But without knowing what’s wrong with her—

I know, I know. He rocked back on his heels. Just wishful thinking.

How will I contact you when she’s ready?

Send a comm to the palace. Or will you be here again next weekend? I could stop by then.

Oh, yes! said Iko from the back of the booth. We’re here every market day. You should come by again. That would be lovely.

Cinder flinched. You don’t need to—

It’ll be my pleasure. He dipped his head in polite farewell, simultaneously pulling the edges of the hood farther over his face. Cinder returned the nod, knowing she should have stood and bowed, but not daring to test her balance a second time.

She waited until his shadow had disappeared from the tabletop before surveying the square. The prince’s presence among the harried crowd seemed to have gone unnoticed. Cinder let her muscles relax.

Iko rolled to her side, clasping her metal grippers over her chest. Prince Kai! Check my fan, I think I’m overheating.

Cinder bent over and picked up her replacement foot, dusting it off on her cargo pants. She checked the plating, glad that she hadn’t dented it.

Can you imagine Peony’s expression when she hears about this? said Iko.

I can imagine a lot of high-pitched squealing. Cinder allowed one more wary scan of the crowd before the first tickle of giddiness stirred inside her. She couldn’t wait to tell Peony. The prince himself! An abrupt laugh escaped her. It was uncanny. It was unbelievable. It was—

"Oh, dear."

Cinder’s smile fell. What?

Iko pointed at her forehead with a pronged finger. You have a grease splotch.

Cinder jerked back and scrubbed at her brow. You’re kidding.

I’m sure he hardly noticed.

Cinder dropped her hand. What does it matter? Come on, help me put this on before any other royalty stops by. She propped her ankle on the opposite knee and began connecting the color-coordinated wires, wondering if the prince had been fooled.

Fits like a glove, doesn’t it? Iko said, holding a handful of screws while Cinder twisted them into the predrilled holes.

It’s very nice, Iko, thank you. I just hope Adri doesn’t notice. She’d murder me if she knew I’d spent 600 univs on a foot. She tightened the last screw and stretched out her leg, rolling her ankle forward, back, wiggling the toes. It was a little stiff, and the nerve sensors would need a few days to harmonize with the updated wiring, but at least she wouldn’t have to limp around off-kilter anymore.

It’s perfect, she said, pulling on her boot. She spotted her old foot held in Iko’s pincers. You can throw that piece of junk awa—

A scream filled Cinder’s ears. She flinched, the sound peaking in her audio interface, and turned toward it. The market silenced. The children, who had switched to a game of hide-and-seek among the clustered booths, crept out from their hiding spots.

The scream had come from the baker, Chang Sacha. Baffled, Cinder stood and climbed on top of her chair to peer over the crowd. She spotted Sacha in her booth, behind the glass case of sweet breads and pork buns, gawking at her outstretched hands.

Cinder clamped a hand over her nose at the same moment realization skittered through the rest of the square.

The plague! someone yelled. She has the plague!

The street filled with panic. Mothers scooped up their children, masking their faces with desperate hands as they scrambled to get away from Sacha’s booth. Shopkeepers slammed shut their rolling doors.

Sunto screamed and rushed toward his mother, but she held her hands out to him. No, no, stay back. A neighboring shopkeeper grabbed the boy, tucking the child under his arm as he ran. Sacha yelled something after him, but the words were lost in the uproar.

Cinder’s stomach churned. They couldn’t run or Iko would be trampled in the chaos. Holding her breath, she reached for the cord at the booth’s corner and yanked the metal door down its rail. Darkness cloaked them but for a single shard of daylight along the ground. The heat rose up from the concrete floor, stifling in the cramped space.

Cinder? said Iko, worry in her robotic voice. She brightened her sensor, washing the booth in blue light.

Don’t worry, Cinder said, hopping down from the chair and grabbing the grease-covered rag from the table. The screams were already fading, transforming the booth into its own empty universe. She’s all the way across the square. We’re fine here. But she slipped back toward the wall of shelves anyway, crouched down and covered her nose and mouth with the rag.

There they waited, Cinder breathing as shallowly as possible, until they heard the sirens of the emergency hover come and take Sacha away.

Chapter Two

THE EMERGENCY SIRENS HADN’T FADED BEFORE THE HUM OF another engine rumbled into the square. The market’s silence was split by feet thumping on the pavement and then someone spitting commands. Someone else’s guttural response.

Slinging her messenger bag across her back, Cinder crept across the dusty floor of her booth and pushed past the tablecloth that draped her work desk. She slipped her fingers into the gap of light beneath the door and inched it open. Pressing her cheek to the warm, gritty pavement, she was able to make out three sets of yellow boots across the square. An emergency crew. She peeled the door open farther and watched the men—all wearing gas masks—as they doused the interior of the booth with liquid from a yellow can. Even across the square, Cinder wrinkled her nose at the stench.

What’s happening? Iko asked from behind her.

’s booth. Cinder’s eyes swept along the square, noting the pristine white hover planted near the corner. Other than the three men, the square was abandoned. Rolling onto her back, Cinder peered up into Iko’s sensor, still glowing faintly in the dark. We’ll leave when the flames start, when they’re distracted."

Are we in trouble?

No. I just can’t be bothered with a trip to the quarantines today.

One of the men spouted an order, followed by shuffling feet. Cinder turned her head and squinted through the gap. A flame was thrown into the booth. The smell of gasoline was soon met with that of burned toast. The men stood back, their uniforms silhouetted against the growing flames.

Reaching up, Cinder grabbed Prince Kai’s android around its neck and pulled it down beside her. Tucking it under one arm, she slid the door open enough to crawl through, keeping her eyes on the men’s backs. Iko followed, scooting against the next booth as Cinder lowered the door. They darted along the storefronts—most left wide open during the mass exodus—and turned into the first skinny alley between shops. Black smoke blotted the sky above them. Seconds later, a horde of news hovers buzzed over the buildings on their way to the market square.

Cinder slowed when they’d put enough distance between them and the market, emerging from the maze of alleys. The sun had passed overhead and was descending behind the skyscrapers to the west. The air sweated with August heat, but an occasional warm breeze was funneled between the buildings, picking up whirlwinds of garbage from the gutters. Four blocks from the market, signs of life appeared again on the streets—pedestrians pooling on the sidewalks and gossiping about the plague outbreak in the city center. Netscreens implanted into building walls showed live feeds of fire and smoke in downtown New Beijing and panicked headlines in which the toll of infected mounted by the second—even though only one person had been confirmed sick so far as Cinder could tell.

All those sticky buns, Iko said as they passed a close-up shot of the blackened booth.

Cinder bit the inside corner of her cheek. Neither of them had ever sampled the acclaimed sweets of the market bakery. Iko didn’t have taste buds, and Chang Sacha didn’t serve cyborgs.

Towering offices and shopping centers gradually melded with a messy assortment of apartment buildings, built so close that they became an unending stretch of glass and concrete. Apartments in this corner of the city had once been spacious and desirable but had been so subdivided and remodeled over time—always trying to cram more people into the same square footage—that the buildings had become labyrinths of corridors and stairwells.

But all the crowded ugliness was briefly forgotten as Cinder turned the corner onto her own street. For half a step, New Beijing Palace could be glimpsed between complexes, sprawling and serene on the cliff that overlooked the city. The palace’s pointed gold roofs sparkled orange beneath the sun, the windows glinting the light back at the city. The ornate gables, the tiered pavilions that teetered dangerously close to the cliff’s edge, the rounded temples stretching to the heavens. Cinder paused longer than usual to look up at it, thinking about someone who lived beyond those walls, who was up there perhaps this very second.

Not that she hadn’t known the prince lived there every time she’d seen the palace before, but today she felt a connection she’d never had before, and with it came an almost smug delight. She had met the prince. He had come to her booth. He knew her name.

Sucking in a breath of humid air, Cinder forced herself to turn away, feeling childish. She was going to start sounding like Peony.

She shifted the royal android to her other arm as she and Iko ducked beneath the overhang of the Phoenix Tower apartments. She flashed her freed wrist at the ID scanner on the wall and heard the clunking of the lock.

Iko used her arm extensions to clop down the stairs as they descended into the basement, a dim maze of storage spaces caged with chicken wire. As a wave of musty air blew up to meet them, the android turned on her floodlight, dispersing the shadows from the sparse halogens. It was a familiar path from the stairwell to storage space number 18-20—the cramped, always chilly cell that Adri allowed Cinder to use for her work.

Cinder cleared a space for the android among the worktable’s clutter and set her messenger bag on the floor. She swapped her heavy work gloves for less grungy cotton ones before locking up the storage room. If Adri asks, she said as they made their way to the elevators, our booth is nowhere near the baker’s.

Iko’s light flickered. Noted.

They were alone in the elevator. It wasn’t until they stepped out onto the eighteenth floor that the building became a crawling hive—children chasing each other down the corridors, both domestic and stray cats creeping tight against the walls, the ever-constant blur of netscreen chatter spilling from the doorways. Cinder adjusted the white-noise output from her brain interface as she dodged the children on her way to the apartment.

The door was wide open, making Cinder pause and check the number before entering.

She heard Adri’s stiff voice from the living room. Lower neckline for Peony. She looks like an old woman.

Cinder peered around the corner. Adri was standing with one hand on the mantel of the holographic fireplace, wearing a chrysanthemum-embroidered bathrobe that blended in with the collection of garish paper fans that covered the wall behind her—reproductions made to look antique. With her face shimmering with too much powder and her lips painted horrifically bright, Adri almost looked like a reproduction herself. Her face was made up as if she’d been planning to go somewhere, although she rarely left the apartment.

If she noticed Cinder loitering in the doorway, she ignored her.

The netscreen above the heatless flames was showing footage from the market. The baker’s booth had been reduced to rubble and the skeleton of a portable oven.

In the center of the room, Pearl and Peony each stood swathed in silk and tulle. Peony was holding up her dark curly hair while a woman Cinder didn’t recognize fidgeted with her dress’s neckline. Peony caught sight of Cinder over the woman’s shoulder and her eyes sparked, a glow bursting across her face. She gestured at the dress with a barely silenced squeal.

Cinder grinned back. Her younger stepsister looked angelic, her dress all silver and shimmering, with hints of lavender when caught in the fire’s light.

Pearl. Adri gestured at her older daughter with a twirling finger, and Pearl spun around, displaying a row of pearl buttons down her back. Her dress matched Peony’s with its snug bodice and flouncy skirt, only it was made of stardust gold. Let’s take in her waist some more.

Threading a pin through the hem of Peony’s neckline, the stranger started at seeing Cinder in the doorway but quickly turned away. Stepping back, the woman removed a bundle of sharp pins from between her lips and tilted her head to one side. It’s already very snug, she said. We want her to dance, don’t we?

We want her to find a husband, said Adri.

No, no, the seamstress tittered even as she reached out and pinched the material around Pearl’s waist. Cinder could tell Pearl was sucking in her stomach as much as she could; she detected the edges of ribs beneath the fabric. She is much too young for marriage.

I’m seventeen, Pearl said, glaring at the woman.

Seventeen! See? A child. Now is for fun, right, girl?

"She is too expensive for fun, said Adri. I expect results from this gown."

. She will be lovely as morning dew." Stuffing the pins back into her mouth, the woman returned her focus to Peony’s neckline.

Adri lifted her chin and finally acknowledged Cinder’s presence by swiping her gaze down Cinder’s filthy boots and cargo pants. Why aren’t you at the market?

It closed down early today, said Cinder, with a meaningful look at the netscreen that Adri didn’t follow. Feigning nonchalance, Cinder thrust a thumb toward the hall. So I’ll just go get cleaned up, and then I’ll be ready for my dress fitting.

? I did not bring material for—"

Have you replaced the magbelt on the hover yet?

Cinder’s smile faltered. No. Not yet.

Well, none of us will be going to the ball unless that gets fixed, will we?

Cinder stifled her irritation. They’d already had this conversation twice in the past week. I need money to buy a new magbelt. 800 univs, at least. If income from the market wasn’t deposited directly into your account, I would have bought one by now.

And trust you not to spend it all on your frivolous toys? Adri said toys with a glare at Iko and a curl of her lip, even though Iko technically belonged to her. "Besides, I can’t afford both a magbelt and a new dress that you’ll only wear once. You’ll have to find some other way of fixing the hover or find your own gown for the ball."

Irritation hardened in Cinder’s gut. She might have pointed out that Pearl and Peony could have been given ready-made rather than custom dresses in order to budget for Cinder’s as well. She might have pointed out that they would only wear their dresses one time too. She might have pointed out that, as she was the one doing the work, the money should have been hers to spend as she saw fit. But all arguments would come to nothing. Legally, Cinder belonged to Adri as much as the household android and so too did her money, her few possessions, even the new foot she’d just attached. Adri loved to remind her of that.

So she stomped the anger down before Adri could see a spark of rebellion.

I may be able to offer a trade for the magbelt. I’ll check with the local shops.

Adri sniffed. Why don’t we trade that worthless android for it?

Iko ducked behind Cinder’s legs.

We wouldn’t get much for her, said Cinder. Nobody wants such an old model.

No. They don’t, do they? Perhaps I will have to sell both of you off as spare parts. Adri reached forward and fidgeted with the unfinished hem of Pearl’s sleeve. "I don’t care how you fix the hover, just fix it before the ball—and cheaply. I don’t need that pile of junk taking up valuable parking

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Cosa pensano gli utenti di Cinder

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  • All three books in "The Lunar Chronicles" were initially hammered out during NaNoWriMo. Cinderella is a cyborg in this fantastic, futuristic amalgamation of fairy-tale retellings, sci-fi adventures, and romantic intrigue. Smashes genre conventions and subverts stereotypes.

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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (4/5)

    This and other reviews can be found on Reading Between Classes

    Cover Impressions: Definitely interesting. Stands out from the typical YA cover. Love the font and the red shoe. Will fit nicely with the cover for Scarlet, can't wait to see the covers for the two after that.

    The Gist: In this updated re-telling of the classic Cinderella story, Cinder, a cyborg, lives with her horrid adoptive mother and two sisters. Her city of New Bejing has been decimated by a mysterious plague and no one can find a cure. When a chance encounter with the sought after Prince Kai and a brush with the plague brings Cinder under scrutiny, she begins to learn about who she was before her surgery and the important role that she may play in the country's security.

    I don't normally go in for Sci Fi novels. Which will explain why I didn't get around to this book until a year after the release date. I was finally tempted by the great reviews and the fairy tale aspect.

    The character of Cinder is interesting, if occasionally infuriating. She refuses to believe that she is anything special and has a lot of difficulty standing up for herself. She has a tendency to talk herself out of taking any action and this often drove me to distraction. At the same time, she is clearly a caring individual (in a world seeming to be populated with the most unfeeling of citizens) and with wonderfully sarcastic wit. Her step-mother, Audrey was cold and calculating, but at times came off as bit too cartoonish in her hatred. I loved the addition of a sympathetic sister and cheered Marissa Meyer on in being able to make some difficult choices as to the fate of her characters. I truly enjoyed Prince Kai and could feel a real spark between him and Cinder. I really was rooting for them to finally get it together (ie for Cinder to stop fighting the inevitable) and was horrified by the unwanted advances of Queen Levana.

    The plot was fairly predictable and I really hope that Meyer didn't intend the final big revelation to actually be a big revelation for the reader. I did enjoy the unexpected twists on the Cinderella story and the reversal of the plot (ending with the ball instead of starting with it). It allowed the book to be based on the fairy tale, but with enough originality to be given its own life. I especially liked the tidbits that alluded to future characters and allowed me to wonder where this might lead in future novels.

    The ending was a little unsatisfying. I kept seeing the minutes tick away and thinking "she can't possibly end it without more resolution". I guess I was hoping for some emotional or romantic payoff - all that chemistry for nothing! I can deal with the cliffhanger ending this time, but I really hope Meyer doesn't make it a habit.

    For those interesting in the audiobook, it is voiced by Rebecca Soler, who is wonderful. Her pacing is good, her voice is fantastic and she is able to pull of a number of accents throughout the book.

    Bring on Scarlet!

    Teaching/Parental Notes:

    Age: 12 and up
    Gender: Female
    Sex: Kissing
    Violence: Mind Control, Gunplay
    Inappropriate Language: None
    Substance Use/Abuse: Drinking
    Other Issues: Descriptions of Medical Procedures
  • (5/5)
    Read the full review here. When I first heard about Cinder, I was sceptical. I haven’t had positive experiences with retellings of fairytales, and a retelling of Cinderella with a cyborg Cinderella sounds silly to me. Once I started reading the book, I found that it isn’t the same calibre as most of the YA genre. It has some light politics, some romantic elements, but it is primarily about a young girl who is struggling mightily with her identity. The characters were my favourite aspect of the book. Cinder is a wonderful heroine, who struggles with being treated like a second-class citizen because she is a cyborg. She legally belongs to her stepmother, which makes her life difficult. Cinder is a compassionate and likeable character, and her interactions with Prince Kai were great to read. Kai is a humorous and charming man, who finds it hard to walk the line between his personal and political life.Meyer has taken a well known folk tale and done fantastic things to it. I was pleasantly surprised by Cinder, and will recommend it to any other person who enjoys young adult novels.
  • (5/5)
    Find this review and more at On The Shelf!The main thing I have to say about this book is I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!!! I was very excited about it from the beginning. The cover is what initially drew my interest, and then I read the synopsis and thought it would be a very unique retelling of Cinderella. Sometimes I can be a bit skeptical of a book when it uses known characters or retellings of stories, but this book was fantastic! The only bad thing I can really say is that I am disappointed I have to wait a year for the next one!I didn’t want to put this book down the entire time I had it, and when I was at work, I couldn’t wait to go on break or get home to read more of it, so it definitely held my attention quite well. Being a retelling, you mostly know how the story is going to go, so a lot of it you can figure out or expect, but there is also plenty that doesn’t go exactly the way you think it is going to.Meyer does a wonderful job at invoking your emotions through out the novel. There are characters you love, some you hate profusely, and there are funny parts with witty android comments and heartbreaking situations.Cinder was a strong character and I felt bad for her because of how she was treated. Cyborg are nothing but property to most of the people and are not looked at as human, but she still stands for what she believes is right. Prince Kai could come to my mechanic shop (if I had one) anytime he wanted! He doesn’t come on strongly and there is not insta-love between the two of them. There are a couple of points where he acted a bit immaturely, but considering the situations, many guys probably would have, too. Adri made my blood boil through out the book, she is certainly a character you love to hate!The story it self is very interesting and unique way to retell the Cinderella story and I can’t wait until I get to read the rest of the series, and my mouth is watering just wishing for the next book! This book is a highly recommended read!! I don’t give out 5 star ratings easily, but giving this one a 4.5 just wouldn’t have been good enough!Unique, emotionally evocative, leaves you yearning for more!!
  • (4/5)
    It is true that I am drawn to the retelling of fairy tales in an almost magnetic fashion. There is something about taking some that has been hashed and rehashed so many times, and still finding the ability to add something new, that makes me smile. That is why when I found out about Cinder, it instantly rose to the top of my reading list. What Marissa Meyer has done with the story of Cinderella is truly magical. Take a story about a fairy tale princess, add in cyborgs, androids and alien races, and you have a book that captured my imagination. Is it steampunk? Is it a fairy tale? I think it's both.

    At the heart of everything is the basic story line of the original fairy tale. Cinder is a character that was orphaned, and is now being raised by her stepmother and stepsisters. She does in fact do the majority of the work around the house, as well as running the family business to bring in money. However, that's where most of the blatant similarities end. In Meyer's story our princess is anything but a wilting flower. Cinder is tough. She's stubborn and willing to work hard for what she wants. She's witty, and her charisma flows off the page. In fact, Cinder has no idea at all that she is a princess. To her, life is all about working hard for her dream. Nothing else matters.

    That is, until Prince Kai comes along. Oh, Kai. I swoon for this gorgeously portrayed prince. If ever there were a princely figure to fall in love with, it would be him. Kai is young, and being pushed into becoming emperor sooner than he'd like. However he takes it all in stride and so graciously. Even when Meyer mentions his worry, Kai finds a place in himself that he draws a smile from. He is the type of character that it is entirely impossible not to fall in love with. Paired with Cinder, the two of them s.

    The world that Cinder and Kai inhabit is beautifully rendered and immersive. Although there are ties to our current Earth, things on their world are still vastly different. Androids are a commonplace part of daily society. Lunars, or the society of people who come from the moon, are in terse negotiations with the people of Earth. Everything is so new and fresh. The one thing that boggled my mind was simply why Cinder was so afraid of people finding out that she was a Cyborg. I kind of hoped that at this point in society people would be accepting of them. Still, it's likely an important part of the story that just hasn't been revealed yet. I believe it. Cinder is a complicated character, and I love her for it.

    Although the first half of the book was a little slow for me, I soon became intensely invested in Cinder and Kai's story. Marissa Meyer has created something amazing with this retelling. If you too are a fan of the retelling of fairy tales, give Cinder the top spot on your reading list! If this is the first time you're delving into this part of fiction, this book is a great place to start. Part steampunk. Part science fiction. All fairy tale romance. Cinder is a wonderful book, and I cannot wait for more!
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed this book, an interesting take on the Cinderella story. I look forward to the next book
  • (4/5)
    Set in the future, "Cinder" Is a clever retelling of an old favourite. Unlike the original Cinderella, Cinder is independent, feisty, a mechanic and a cyborg which makes for a very interesting protagonist. The front cover of this book is eye-catching with the red stiletto shoe and I was drawn to it as soon as I saw the book advertised in a catalogue. I thoroughly enjoyed "Cinder"and can't wait for the second book to come out.
  • (3/5)
    Cyborg Cinderella! What more is there to say?
  • (4/5)
    Once upon a time, there was a cyborg named Linh Cinder. Traditional fairytale meets science fiction in Marissa Meyer’s Cinder, the first novel in The Lunar Chronicles. Meyer brings new life to a classic tale that most people know like the back of their hands.

    Cinder lives in the future in a city called New Beijing, home of humans, cyborgs, and androids. The city is plagued by a nasty disease coined letumosis which easily decimates much of the population. Cinder’s highly-skilled work in mechanics helps keep her step-family off of the poverty-stricken streets. When Prince Kai, the local ruler, comes to call on an urgent matter, her life turns topsy-turvy.

    Cinder is one of the strongest female protagonists I have ever had the pleasure of reading in the young adult fiction genre. While she lacks knowledge about her past, she is very confident in her abilities and she possesses a highly intuitive personality. Cinder acknowledges her unfortunate situation as a ward to a selfish and uncaring stepmother, but she does not allow her problematic position to bring her down. She is her own hero.

    I was also impressed by Meyer’s decision to provide Cinder with both a sympathetic stepsister, Peony, and an adoring female android, Iko. It is not often that so many female characters interact, let alone relate to each other on such a high level in modern young adult fiction. I found myself rooting for all three characters and hoping that their relationships blossomed.

    While love interests seem to be guaranteed in this genre, I found the exchanges between Kai and Cinder to be refreshing and shockingly realistic. Love does not always happen right away, and often one’s attempts to woo another end rather horrifically, or in this case, hilariously.

    On a more serious note, the novel addresses a few intriguing questions, including to what lengths must a society go to prevent a highly contagious disease from spreading? And how would it find a cure for the disease? Meyer touches on the fact that there are never easy answers to these questions, and when decisions are made lightly, people suffer greatly.

    The fully-formed relationships between characters, the twist on the classic tale, and the developments related to letumosis left me devouring Cinder in only a few days. It is quite the page-turner, and I look forward to reading the rest of the four novels in the series.
  • (5/5)
    Jessica brought this home from the school library and said Mom read this! So I picked it up and couldn't put it down. At first you think its going to be the typical Cinderella story but with Cyborg as the main character. Much to my delight it was so much more....

    The story is complex and takes you to many unexpected places. I can't wait to read the next boo Scarlett which is the 2nd of 4 books. This is a series to watch!

    Cinder is a complicated character who doesn't remember her life before her surgery. Though she is treated as an outsider but she has love and compassion for those around her and of course she falls for the Prince Kai even though she doesn't think she is. She make a huge sacrifice to better the world and we shall see what happens in the next book!
  • (5/5)
    Cinder, a sixteen-year-old gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She has a mysterious past, is considered a second-class citizen, and is hated by her step-mother and step-sisters. A chance meeting with Prince Kai incognito, changes the path of her life forever. As the story unravels the reader can't help but become drawn into this futuristic retelling of a classic fairy tale. Marissa Meyer does a a wonderful job of combining the traditional story with science-fiction and magic. Recommended for 6-12 graders.
  • (4/5)
    I've been waiting a long time to read this one and it leas as good as I expected it to be. A great Cinderella story but original enough that I wasn't bored. I had the ending correctly figured out from the first couple chapters but the ride getting from start to finish was a lot of fun.

    Four stars instead of five because a couple times I was annoyed by a couple key characters not doing some vital thing- like Cinder not immediately fixing the prince's android. And I never quite understood why she had to leave by the night of the ball. Yeah, it's good to give a goal a deadline but when you're hinted to that your repair job is of vital importance to national security, I think you can push back your personal deadline a few days.
  • (4/5)
    Also posted on Silk & Serif

    Why did I put Cinder off for so long?! I remember reading the synopsis and being really unexcited but I kept hearing SUCH GOOD THINGS. I kept thinking “I’ll probably like it, but I have all these other books that kind of seem more interesting so I’ll read those instead.” Time went on. I didn’t read Cinder. Seriously, I regret that decision now because I loved Cinder to bits. It’s unique, exciting and you don’t see the twists coming.

    Cinder is a cyborg. A gifted mechanic, but nevertheless, a second class citizen because of her half-machine parts. She doesn’t remember anything before the accident that made her into what she is and cannot control her current fate as the stepchild of a woman who hates her. It’s her skills that bring Prince Kai and his secrets to her door, changing her life irrevocably. She is suddenly thrust into an intergalactic struggle, a forbidden romance and a past that she could never have imagined.

    Cinder was amazingly creative with humans and androids living among one another. Androids are little more than technology made to help humans in their daily lives like a toaster or oven: useful, but nothing more than items to be owned. It makes a cyborg a complex problem: half human, half android. The law has deemed cyborgs as non-humans and property of their owners. Cyborgs have no rights, no homes and no family yet they are still human on the inside.

    I loved that Cinder not only developed a fresh world that I haven’t seen before, but there were sociological issues hidden in the text. I think the number one reason why I loved Cinder is because it has so many undercurrents of social struggle. I loved the first two Hunger Games because it linked to modern social problems; reality tv, censorship and political control. The development of a culture that is both struggling with fast technological change and yet using it on a daily basis felt like a well placed nod to today’s society.

    The struggles between humanity and machine in Cinder were exceptionally well done! I loved how Cinder was loved by human and an android making her part of both worlds in so many ways.

    We find Cinder many years after a crash took away her rights to humanity and living with a family that adopted her after the operation. She flits through life as nothing more than an object, mistreated and undervalued. Her only friends are her sister Peony and Iko until one day Prince Kai comes along and drags her into dark palace politics. The romance is slow and well measured. We learn about Kai over time, there is absolutely no insta-love (hurray!) and Kai reacts realistically to Cinder’s mysterious past. I definitely felt the slow growth of the romance added suspense to the novel, but the real prize was learning about Cinder’s history and her future!

    Seriously, if you have Cinder on your TBR list you need to read it. I was pleasantly surprised by this book and I hear the series only gets better after Cinder. Read it! You won’t be disappointed.
  • (3/5)
    [Cross-posted to Knite Writes]This book was a fun read, I thought, but it had a pile of issues.While the pacing of the book is pretty quick and never drags, the plot itself leaves a lot to be desired. The foreshadowing is so overdone, so obvious, and so often repeated that none of the major “twists” actually end up a surprise. Especially the main twist at the end — I’m not even sure why it was set up to be a “big reveal” at all, given the sheer amount of time spent discussing the topic beforehand.On a different note, many areas of the story were sorely underutilized. Parts that could have been exciting action sequences were reduced to short asides, and far too many interesting occurrences were glossed over over in summary form to make room for scenes that didn’t add much to the story. Worst of all, while the story moves fast, for sure, it doesn’t really move anywhere — most of the plot didn’t push the story forward, and as the book wound to a close, I realized (with horror) that Cinder suffers from the dreaded “prologue book” syndrome. This book basically acts as a minimal effort setup for the “more exciting” sequel instead of standing on its own as a strong, well-designed novel.Overall, I found the plot of Cinder lackluster and poorly constructed.The characters didn’t do much for me either. Many of them fell under the banner of absolute good or evil, and the ones who didn’t were either minor characters or woefully inconsistent in their presentation. Cinder, as a protagonist, was all over the place — sometimes, she came off as capable, other times far too childish and naive for her age (and her apparent life experience). Kai, as a love interest and a Prince, fell flat for me — he was too often used as a mechanism to get a more in-depth look as Levana. His actual personality and development were compacted into too few scenes, and he had very little emotional depth.Finally, there was Levana — the evil queen. And that’s all she was. Evil for, apparently, evil’s sake. My least favorite kind of villain. I found her presentation…not particularly compelling, to say the least. She could have been far more complex and interesting, but instead, she was cast as the default “pure evil” bad guy.So, poor plot and poor characters. Yikes. But it does get worse:By far, my biggest problem with this story was the world-building. Excuse me: what world-building? All the world-building in this story was tissue-paper thin. Everything was superficial. What could have been the sort of brilliantly vibrant and weird future society that the most imaginative of SFF books explore was instead reduced to a few key pieces of technology (androids, cyborgs, future cars) and some throwaway lines about altered country boundaries, a fourth World War, and a plague.I was so disappointed by the lack of proper world-building in this story — because the premise sounded excellent. And I could see the foundation for a ton of awesome world-building throughout the book…but it never came to fruition. It all fell to the wayside in favor the breakneck pacing and the frivolous plot details. In the end, the book leaves the reader with a very indistinct picture of the world — and an even more indistinct picture of the weird Moon society supposedly threatening the world. I would have really loved to learn the history of that. But I didn’t get the chance to.All in all, this book is definitely a case of “Cool idea! Poor execution.” Obviously, a lot of imagination went into creating the ideas behind this book, but most of those ideas were never fleshed out in the actual story. As a result, the book failed to impress me on pretty much every front.Really, the only redeeming quality of this book is that, at its core, it’s a fairly quick, fun read. It’s not horrible, really. But it just doesn’t do, well, anything, to stand out and become a great book.
  • (4/5)
    You can also see this review on my blog here

    I have heard such great things about Cinder over the past several months, but I had already wanted to read it since I read my friend Jac at For Love and Books’s review of it last year. It just took me a while to get to it.

    I’ll start off by saying that I listened to the audio of Cinder, and I kind of wish that I had read it instead. I did really well with audiobooks in January, but my listening has become more and more sporadic, as I prioritize my reading books, so they take me a while. Sometimes, I go so long between listening that I forget some of what has happened, and it takes me out of the world of the story, and I feel like that happened a bit with Cinder.

    Because I started this so long ago, I don’t remember much about my feelings as I started reading. I remember that Cinder was working in her booth at the market, as a mechanic, when Prince Kai came to her and asked her to fix her android. After he left, there was an outbreak of the plague, and Cinder and her android hid. What I do remember is that things seemed to pick up quickly and keep going.

    It took me a while to really remember what a cyborg was, but once I did, I was really impressed by Cinder. It felt like her life would be really hard, and in some ways, it was, but in other ways, she was a completely normal girl. I thought Prince Kai was totally amazing because he wasn’t pompous or arrogant. He was a totally down-to-earth, caring individual. And Queen Levana was definitely an intriguing villain. She is scary on all kinds of levels!

    There were a lot of twists and turns that I didn’t see coming, and they were pretty great. It really made Cinder feel like so much more of a fully-developed story than the original Cinderella. However, there was one major plot twist that I called really early on in the book. I just knew that it was going that way, so I wasn’t surprised when it came out. However, the circumstances surrounding the big reveal did surprise me.

    Overall, I thought that Cinder was a really good book. Also, I did enjoy the audio book. However, I think I may read my kindle version before going on to Scarlet, just to make sure I didn’t miss or forget anything. I would absolutely recommend reading Cinder, and I would recommend the audiobook if you listen more frequently than I do!
  • (3/5)
    I kept seeing this on a list of books one should read. It offered an Interesting opening, but felt like a squished together concept of three different storylines. There's the obvious - the retelling of Cinderella. Then there's the Lunies or Lunar Colony people and their affect on humanity and the pandemic plague that's taking everyone to quarantine. You don't realize how linked these stories are until you get deep into the book.The whole wicked step mother, the handsome prince everyone drools over except the Main Character, all there. Once the author started releasing the details, things became too obvious. The ending is very anticlimactic. Like there should be more but isn't. (Then I read into the descriptions of the rest of the series and just sigh) It feels like the storyline isn't complete, which it isn't.Not sure I want to continue the series. It will be pondered.
  • (4/5)
    I have been putting off reading this as I really did not think it was something I was going to enjoy. I really did not think I would get past chapter 1 without wanting to DNF this. I was I wrong! I really, really enjoyed it.It was almost addicting! I flew through this in just two nights. I cannot really explain it. I loved the writing and the characters (especially Iko). There was nothing keeping me on the edge of my seat, but I was just caught up into the world and the story.The plot twist was predictable and I figured it out as soon as it was mentioned. But, it still did not take away from how good this was or wanting to know what happens. I will be picking up Scarlet soon!
  • (4/5)
    SynopsisThis book is a Cinderella retelling set in a futuristic world. Without giving spoilers here I will just warn that there are some major elements of the Cinderella story that are changed and I wasn't entirely prepared for that. Mostly near the end of the story. In this book, Cinder is a cyborg. She is an adopted child with no idea about her past. All she knows is she was in an accident where her parents were killed which led to her being turned into a cyborg. She was adopted by a scientist but he died shortly after her adoption leaving her in the care of her cruel step-mother. Cinder works as a mechanic to earn money for her family. One day, the prince comes to her shop because he needs an android repaired. They talk. They flirt. They run into each other over and over again. Cinder gets invited to the ball. So, typical Cinderella stuff.But, a lot of other stuff is happening too. There is a plague and tons of political drama happening.My rating: 4/5This book is great if you are somewhat new to sci-fi. I don't read a ton of sci-fi but I didn't have any trouble following what was happening. I really enjoyed this book. One thing that I loved about Cinder much more than the original Cinderella stories is that Cinder is a very active protagonist. She is trying hard to save herself through the whole book and not just laying down and taking the terrible treatment of her step mother. There is so much happening in this book and it was such a fun ride to take. Much of it was fairly predictable but there were some things that completely shocked me. One of those things was the ending. I won't spoil it but I will say that this book ends on a cliff hanger and I wasn't prepared for that. I am excited for the next book which I believe is a Little Red Riding Hood Retelling but I want to finish up Cinder's story. I was really annoyed with the way Cinder ended actually. Overall though, this was an amazing book and I highly recommend it. I will be reading Scarlet and I totally understand why this book is a popular series. I really was fascinated by the world. I really liked Cinder and several of the side characters. I loved the plot and everything that was happening. Throughout most of the book I liked the prince though I felt like he made a lot of really bad decisions for the "right" reasons. I understood his motivations I just thought that a lot of the time he should have done things differently.I highly recommend this book. Especially if you enjoy YA fantasy. This book reads kind of like YA or middle grade fantasy. It is a complex world but well explained and highly character driven. The science stuff is mostly setting related. This is one of those books that I feel very confident telling everyone who asks for a book recommendation to read. Just overall a very nice book.
  • (4/5)
    This book was selected as a monthly read in one of my groups so I decided to give it a try. I knew it was a mix of fairytale and fantasy, but it turned out to be so much more.

    The story takes place after WWIV on Earth, specifically in New Bejing. Cinder is a mechanic, under-appreciated by her stepmother and one of her stepsisters. The other stepsister adores her. Actually, she was adopted by her "father" so I am not sure if they are really considered "steps". It turns out that she is actually a cyborg who does not have the same rights as a normal person and her step-mother goes out of her way to remind Cinder this whenever she can. She is actually the only one who works and earns money in the family so she supports them. One day Prince Kai requests her services to fix his android. He has not idea that she is a cyborg and in true fairy tale fashion he begins to fall for her. She does not want to let him know that she is not totally human. With all this going on, the worst plotline is that the world is suffering from a deadly plague that has no cure. Meanwhile, on the moon is another race called the "Lunars". They do not suffer from the plague, they are glamourous, have bio-electric powers that can make people see, hear and do things they do not want to do and if an alliance can not be made, they will attack the Earth. The Earth's only hope depends on an alliance with the evil Lunar Queen, Levana. What she wants to create this alliance is not what Prince Kai is willing to agree to.

    The characters in Cinder are wonderful. They all have their own strengths and personalities. You will either love them or hate them. Cinder is independent, feisty, and easy to relate to. She doesn't always make the right decisions, but this is a heroine that learns from her mistakes. Her heart is in the right place. Prince Kai is learning to become a leader and is strong and loyal to his people. Both great characters. The romance is so sweet. At first Cinder is wary of the Prince's advances because she is cyborg and doesn't want him to find out, but she can't help but develop feelings for him along the way.

    The ending actually had me opening the next book in this series immediately after finishing this one. I am glad I waited to read it because the next books are already available. So I will move from Cinderella to Red Riding Hood to continue this story. A great read that I would recommend to fantasy and Sci-fi lovers, romance as well as those who like variations of the fairy tales. Great job Marissa Meyer!
  • (4/5)
    Clever retelling and new slant on Cinderella, giving her a bit more spunk and spine, and not just the metal kind.
  • (5/5)
    First of all, I liked it! It was exactly the sort of read I needed to get me through a busy, school-and-research-filled week. The author gets major points for coming up with such an original take on the Cinderella story. Although she has moved the story forward in time and made Cinder an android, that’s just the beginning. She also added her own secondary plots, with the earth struggling to avoid a war with a country formed from human colonists living on the moon and a dreadful plague sweeping the country where Cinder lives. Re-reading the previous sentence, it almost sounds too bizarre to be believe, but the whole plot flows quite logically and plausibly from the author’s excellent world building narrative. We never learn about the world in a way that feels disconnected from the plot; instead, we constantly learn new information while staying engaged with the current moment.The major plot points were pretty predictable, even those not pulled directly from the original Cinderella story. In some books that might bother me, but in this case the exact way the plot unfolded and many of the little details were both interesting and unexpected. Plus I was expecting predictability to a certain extent since it is a book based on a fairy tale. However, the original Cinderella story was definitely just an inspiration for this series, which even in this first book has already diverged enough from the original that calling it simply a re-telling would be doing it an injustice. The book reminded me more of the movie Ever After (and if you haven’t seen that, you should go watch it now) than of the original fairy tale, because of the strong heroine.Without giving too much away, I would like to say that I was surprised the ending didn’t at least wrap up the romantic plot line as per the original story. Despite the lack of resolution, the ending wasn’t enough of a cliff-hanger to annoy – just enough to leave room for some more wonderful books. I can’t wait for the next one!
  • (5/5)
    I loved this one. I loved this one so much I read it in two sittings. I devoured this book. There was nothing I didn't love. I adored Cinder and Prince Kai is possibly one of the most swoon worthy heroes I've come across in a long time. The sciences parts were well done without being over complicated. The world building was fascinating. I even loved step sister Peony.

    Such an interesting and original way to retell a classic fairytale. It had everything I look for in a book. Can't wait for the rest of the series.
  • (4/5)
    Creative and exciting, though not quiet the book I expected. I loved the strong characters and the break from the fairy-tell clichés.
  • (4/5)
    I have to be honest. When I first started reading this book - I was afraid I was going to be giving it a negative review. DON'T JUDGE ME. I thought that because it took me a bit to get into it (which was true, but it wasn't the book's fault, it was because I had other things to do at the time...). Cinder is a re-telling of the Cinderella fairy tale, except that in this case, Cinder is a cyborg mechanic in future Beijing. She lives with her evil stepmother/guardian, an equally evil stepsister and a younger stepsister, Peony, whom she actually loves. Her world is currently undergoing a matter of different threats: there is a fatal and contagious disease spreading, the emperor is dying, and Cinder is unaware of what to do with Prince Kai's sudden attention.I ended up loving this book way more than I thought I would. I was never a fan of the Cinderella story, but this cyborg re-telling of it just completely got my attention. I very much enjoy fairy tale re-tellings, especially when the lead character is as smart and badass Cinder is. Prince Kai was also not too shabby!This book left me wanting more and I cannot wait until Book 2 comes out (though I wonder if there will be an introduction of more fairy tale characters re-told?). This was a fantastic book that I recommend to YA, Sci-fi and fairy tale enthusiasts alike!
  • (4/5)
    I was pretty skeptical about CINDER. The cover is neat but the blurb really didn't get me super excited to read the book. I held out for quite a while before even picking it up out of my TBR pile but I'm glad I did finally decide to read it. When reading the blurb and seeing that the main character Cinder was a Cyborg I figured that meant she was a manufactured robot but in reality it just meant that she was hurt and had metal parts put into her to save her life. Because of that people pretty much treat her like a diseased second class citizen. Her evil stepmother has guardianship (aka ownership) of her and can treat her pretty much however she wants. She doesnt remember anything about herself or her life before her accident when she became a cyborg and was adopted by a man that died right afterwords leaving her with her stepmother and the story leads us to find out who she really is and what she is destined to do.Cinder was a great character to get to know. Even though she is treated like crap she goes along her daily business doing what she has to do with her head held high. While working the Prince comes to her for help fixing his android and they seem to instantly have an attraction but because of what she is she doesn't let him get close to her for a long time no matter how hard he tries. I really enjoyed Kai. He did some pretty crappy things towards the end but I think he will redeem himself in future books.CINDER ended up being an awesome debut novel that I hard a hard time putting down. There is a lot of emotion, There is a lot of creativity, there is a lot of mystery and suspense and Marissa did a really good job of revealing things at a great pace. I did find a few things predictable but I cant wait to see what comes next. SCARLET isn't set to release until 2013 boo ;)
  • (4/5)
    Looking forward to book 2. Suggestion: Don't start this one until the next one comes out.
  • (5/5)
    Review Courtesy of Dark Faerie TalesQuick & Dirty: Not your average fairytale. Quick and easy read. You’ll enjoy it, I promise.Opening Sentence: The screw through Cinder’s ankle had rusted, the engraved cross marks worn to a mangled circle.The Review: Welcome to the world of the future, and things are a bit different. After two more world wars, the countries have been conglomerated into fewer but larger empires, and are again ruled by a monarchy. In this time frame, the world’s people are also again fighting against a viral pandemic. It seems that a new form of the plague is touring the globe, taking everyone it infects. Interesting twists are put on what the symptoms are and where the contagions originated.We have also learned how to construct true to life cyborgs, and we didn’t even need the help of the Borg. Yes, I do know that statement dates me a bit, and pretty much makes me seem geekier. Live long and prosper.Oh, and I forgot one more major thing. There is a whole separate race of people living on the moon. A people who come complete with “magical” powers and a ruler who puts Hitler to shame. And now she wants to rule the Earth.In the city of New Beijing resides, Cinder, a some-teen-year-old female cyborg. I know it says her age in the book, but I can’t seem to find it again. Anyway, Cinder is the local fixit girl, so good even the Prince has heard of her. And the rest of this story gets really hard to tell without a ton of spoilers. So I will only say that Cinder meets the prince, and after a few minutes spent together, they fall madly in “like”. There is also another major story arc involving the plague and Cinder’s being forced to be a subject in cyborg testing of vaccines, in search of a cure. And finally, the Lunar Queen shows up and there are conflicts surrounding her presence and her terms regarding a peace agreement between the Earth and the Moon. For the rest of the gory details, read the book. It’ll do you good.Following along with the traditional fairytale line, Cinder has the usual name(ish), the evil stepmother, two stepsisters (one not so evil) and similar duties, and let’s not forget Prince Kai. Not so traditionally are the plague, the deaths and the whole biological family storyline, which mixes in a bit of the tale of Anastasia.It’s nice to take in the occasional YA novel. Keeps my speed-reading muscles limber. I literally went from beginning to end in one session of preschool…2.5 hours. That is also a testament to how good the storyline was and how well it was written.By no means am I a YA connoisseur, but I did indeed enjoy this book. And I call dibs if we get the privilege to review the coming titles.Notable Scene:The guard pulled away, releasing Cinder’s wrists.Planting her feet, Cinder barely caught herself from toppling forward—at the same time that her hand reached back as if with a mind of its own, and snatched the gun from the guard’s holster.She stiffened, feeling the heavy gun so abruptly, unexpectedly in her steel hand.Her finger slipped over the trigger as if it were an extension of her. The gun felt comfortable in her gloved hand. But it shouldn’t have. She’d never held one before.Her heart thudded.Cinder lifted the gun, pressing the barrel against her own temple. A shuddering cry escaped her. A strand of hair clung to her parched lips. Her eyes darted to the left, unable to see the gun or the traitorous hand holding it. She looked at the queen, the crowd, Kai.Her whole body was shaking, but for the confident arm holding the gun poised to kill her.“No! Leave her alone!” Kai rushed for her, grasping her elbow. He tried to yank it away, but she was immobilized, solid as a statue. “Let her go!”“K-Kai,” she stammered, terror seizing her. She urged her hand to drop the gun, urged her finger to pull away from the trigger, but it was useless.The Lunar Chronicles Series:1. Cinder2. Scarlet3. Cress4. WinterFTC Advisory: Macmillan provided me with a copy of Cinder. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
  • (4/5)
    This was a fun, readable book with sweet characters, accessible science fiction elements, and a fast pace. The plot was fairly predictable (partially because of it being a retelling), but I feel like knowing the twist ahead of time didn't ruin it for me much because the characters didn't know, so it had that suspense thing going for it. It was an interesting vision of Earth's future, and I actually wish Meyer had taken us even deeper into the setting of New Beijing. I'll certainly keep a lookout for book #2 when it releases!
  • (5/5)
    Wow!This is a fantastic retelling of the Cinderella fairy tale with a twist. What a creative story told by Melissa Meyer! Who would have thought to write a story with Cinderella as a cyborg?Cinder, a mechanic who is partially robotic, falls for a prince who has a duty to his kingdom. She helps him to find his voice in a world very different from our own. In a battle between us and Luna, the moon, the prince must find a way to end the plague and a possible war threatening to destroy the people who his is meant to protect.
  • (5/5)
    Great read that mirrors the original Cinderella tale with a futuristic modern twist. I enjoyed it thoroughly!
  • (5/5)
    Ya’ll, this is the epic book I have been waiting for. You have to go through some bad ones to get to a good one right? And man have I been going through a bad streak lately.The main character, Cinder, is just the right amount of determination and insecurity with a hint of rebellion. Her horrible step sister and step mother are as to be expected, horrible. The little bit of flirting that goes on between her and Kai is just enough to get you hoping that there will be more, and since this is a series there will be. There is right? More flirting? Because I like Kai, he seems like a good guy. Oh, and the whole future twist, with the moon queen and the cyborgs and the androids, it is interesting and pulled me in. I am impressed with Meyer’s ability to write such a story and not be corny or overly specific, it isn’t too Star Trekish (sorry I am not a fan of Star Trek, but kudos if you are).Needless to say I would certainly recommend this book to a friend. I went out and picked up the sequel, Scarlet, when I had about 100 pages left in Cinder. I am now primed to begin the next book after I finish the other book I’m reading.