{Kat's Korner} Reading CINDER for the First Time with Kat!

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Hello and Happy St. Valentine's Day from Kat!

Hope you're having a great one, or at least your fill of delicious treats that you so deserve. I feel like it's been FOREVER since I was last here! Due to the weather and other weird things, I've experienced technical difficulties which have kept me away. No worries now, though. I am back! Since I missed the CRESS event AND I didn't get to travel to Books of Wonder to see her on the 13th, I want to ramble about CINDER by Marissa Meyer and how absolutely fabulous it is.

CINDER is a title that Bonnie had continuously thrust at me until I read it. Honestly it took me about a year before I finally did read it, but only because I was only discovering how deep my love of sci-fi goes. Safe to say that I regret not caving sooner - Meyer knocked Cinderella out of the ball park and into some kind of futuristic mechanical awesome. The striking and somewhat sexy red book jacket reads as follows:

"Sixteen-year-old Cinder is considered a technological mistake by most of society and a burden by her stepmother. Being cyborg does have its benefits, though: Cinder’s brain interface has given her an uncanny ability to fix things (robots, hovers, her own malfunctioning parts), making her the best mechanic in New Beijing. This reputation brings Prince Kai himself to her weekly market booth, needing her to repair a broken android before the annual ball. He jokingly calls it “a matter of national security,” but Cinder suspects it’s more serious than he’s letting on.

Although eager to impress the prince, Cinder’s intentions are derailed when her younger stepsister, and only human friend, is infected with the fatal plague that’s been devastating Earth for a decade. Blaming Cinder for her daughter’s illness, Cinder’s stepmother volunteers her body for plague research, an “honor” that no one has survived.

But it doesn’t take long for the scientists to discover something unusual about their new guinea pig. Something others would kill for."

If you haven't read this before, are you making noises of intrigue? I sure did.

By name, I expected some normal Cinderella retelling, but I sure was not expecting this. Meyer can count herself among my writing role models now because she took a well-known and loved tale, threw it through a time vortex into a totally cool sci-fi future, and yet retained the fairy tale atmosphere by leaving key parallels in her plot. Like, for instance, Cinder's horrible step mother, Adri, and stepsister, Pearl. I haven't disliked characters this much since Professor Umbridge's debut in Rowling's HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX. Oh my goodness, I could write an entire page on how foul Adri and Pearl are, but there would be far too many spoilers. Even Meyer's dislikable characters are very well done, as you can see. You can't have dark without light, though, and Cinder's one decent stepsister Peony and their service bot Iko were kind and wonderful enough to help both Cinder and the reader stomach Adri and Pearl. Meyer's character development and relationships are so deep and well-written that it's easy to become attached to this story.

Along with the delights who are named Iko and Peony, there's the handsome Prince Kai, who happens to seek out the great mechanic Linh Cinder. Terrified that he'll hate her for being cyborg like most of society, Cinder can hardly keep her cool around Kai, and kind of stumbles into taking the job he offers her. He requests that she repairs one of his personal bots. Cinder and Iko were excited to have an excuse to interact with Prince Kai, though, and were just as excited to tell sweet little Peony.

But prepare for your heart to crack apart, because as indicated by the attractive red book jacket, Peony falls ill to the plague. Then in comes horrendous Adri, here to salt the wound and blame Cinder. Cinder is then taken to be used as a guinea pig for plague research, a thing so terrible that nobody ever survives. And yet, Cinder does. So she is offered money and an excuse to get out of home and away from Adri to continue the plague research. Suddenly, Cinder finds a small amount of freedom in this, which she intends to use to save Peony and get out of Adri's house for good. Can't blame the poor girl -- I would've been arrested and thrown away without a key if I had to deal with Adri for a minute, because I would have dealt with her with my fists. D:<

Anyway, the pressure is on big time. Can the research on Cinder find a cure, or even a serum to help Peony survive a little longer? What is it about Cinder that makes her able to withstand a plague that has killed so many? And what is it that Kai needs that bot for enough to keep bringing him back to Cinder? One of my own personal questions, can Cinder stand Adri now that Peony isn't there at home to help her through being there?

Don't miss this one; definitely go pick up a copy and get in on the action here. There is plenty of time to catch up before WINTER hits the shelves next year. Meyer made this series so riveting and easy to read, I cannot wait to pick up my copy of CRESS and dive in. Also, kind of a teaser here, but her world building has blasted off in SCARLET, the second in the Lunar Chronicles, and reached new heights of awesome. Don't do what I did and put these off for later.

That's all for this week. I'll be back with more exciting things soon! Just to tease you ladies and gents, I'll be covering sorceresses, assassins, more of Dennard's wonderful Spirit Hunters, and dragons the next few times you hear from me. If you can't wait until then, feel free to find me on goodreads, where I've taken to practice writing reviews. As always, happy reading!

*This review is an HONEST representation of my personal thoughts and feelings of this work. CINDER was purchased by me, and this review was not prompted nor paid for by any individual or group.

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Title:  CINDER
Author: Marissa Meyer
Release Date: Jan. 3, 2012
Publisher: Macmillan / Feiwel and Friends
Received: Purchased

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.

The epic meeting of the two Kats!
Kat Meets Kat Zhang (And Susan Dennard,
Sarah J. Maas, and Erin Bowman!) at YAGB!
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to feel like you were there with Kat, Bonnie, and the authors!


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  1. Glad you love cinder! Your reviews on books are great.

  2. great review! there really is so much to love about Cinder as well as Meyer's world building.

  3. This review was a lot of fun to read! I read Cinder in early 2013 where I met Marissa Meyer who was actually the first author I had ever met! Eep!

    I really liked the way you wrote this review of sorts! I like how you talked about Peony's illness, Iko and things that tied back to the original Cinderella. It gives people who haven't read Cinder a taste of what they're going to get without spoiling it for them!

    I'm spreading the love for #LoveAThon and I’d really appreciate some comment love on my blog too!

    - Nova @ Out of Time


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