Series: Lunar Chronicles #3
Published by Feiwel & Friends on February 4th, 2014
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard.
In this third book in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.
Their best hope lies with Cress, who has been trapped on a satellite since childhood with only her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker—unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.
When a daring rescue goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing stop her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only ones who can.
After getting an ARC of Scarlet, but not being able to wrangle one for Cress (it happens), I waited patiently for this to come out. My intent was to immediately devour it; Unfortunately, that didn’t happen for me as I became both ill and busy.
I did eventually make it through this stressful novel, and I’m so glad I did. I love the characters. Thorne in particular was more fleshed out and interesting. He’s so similar to Captain Jack, who is one of my most favorite characters in anything ever (Torchwood never happened, shh), that it’s impossible to not picture him as such, dashing smile and all.
Cress, while only appearing briefly before this point might be a competent hacker, but is otherwise a damsel in distress. This is fine, as we’ve got several strong female leads in the book already. A simpering, fanatical shut in balances the scales quite nicely.
The other new addition to the group is Jacin, Sybil’s bodyguard/pilot who is loyal to his princess. The princess happens to be Winter, the Lunar Queen’s stepdaughter, but for awhile Cinder thinks that he means Princess Selene. He’s otherwise not that extraordinary, a background piece that will probably come into play in the next installment.
The spin that the retellings take generally grasps the concepts in the stories they are reliant upon, but consider them in a new light. The stolen Rampion, for one, is not a plant but a spaceship. Cress still sings enchantingly. Thorne, despite not being pierced with them (yes, I’m aware that they are spelled different), does lose his eyesight. And Cress and Thorne do end up in a desert. Everything in between is all Marissa Meyer’s doing and she weaves an interesting tale.
I guess the one gripe I have about the whole series is the way everything falls into place too neatly. Plot points are mastered one by one, and even after the stressful start of the book, a series of circumstances puts most of the characters back where they need to be in order to forward the plot. I mean, okay, one or two coincidences such as this is okay, but Cress happened upon the one group of human traffickers who sold to their allies? Okay, but the skeptic in me doesn’t like it.
This book is full of plenty of twists and turns and upsets. I see a lot of people griping about Thorne’s eyesight. At least he is with the group. Scarlet, on the other hand, has been captured and tortured and while this offers us a glimpse of Winter (she seems like she’s going to be a blast), it still causes plenty of strife for the characters and for the reader. Doctor Erland’s eventual demise is also cause for plenty of tears.
The book ends with a bang, and the setup for the next novel makes this year long wait excruciating. This book makes up for the meandering that Scarlet offered and reasserts Ms. Meyer as a force to be reckoned with.
Want another opinion? Amy’s four star review is here.