Book Review: Cress by Marissa Meyer

Cress (The Lunar Chronicles, #3)

Title: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Dystopian, Fairy Tale Retelling,
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: February 2014
Pages: 550
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
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.

My Review:

In the third instalment of the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder is still on the run. In a stolen ship captained by the handsome yet criminal Caswell Thorne, Cinder and her motley crew (Wolf, Scarlet and the ever effervescent Iko) are trying to stay one step in front of the Lunar Queen. When they get contacted by a girl imprisoned by one of the Queen’s thaumaturges, they change their plans to rescue the technologically skilled, Cress. When things don’t go as smoothly as expected, the group gets separated. All of them have to survive as best they can whilst still trying to come up with a way to thwart the Lunar Queen from enslaving Earth.

Cress has been one of the books I’ve been most anticipating this year. I adore Marissa Meyer’s storytelling and this book did not let me down. Cinder has a lot of pressure on her shoulders. She knows that she is the only chance Prince Kai and Earth have against Queen Levana. She’s brave and intelligent but what I like most about her is that she’s logical. She thinks things though and doesn’t rush in just because. The way she cares about her crew is a plus and I enjoy her differing to others when she needs help.

The other characters all get their chance to shine in this novel too. Scarlet and Wolf are great together but still get their chance to show what they are made of as individuals. Iko is the funniest most loveable artificial intelligence that I have ever encountered. Cress was a pleasant surprise. There’s mystery surrounding her – some of which is revealed in this book – and I love how Meyer wove her Rapunzel likeness into the plot. Finally – there’s my favourite character of this series, Captain Caswell Thorne. He may initially come across as somewhat superficial and vain (and I’m not saying he’s neither of these things) but he really shines in Cress.

There are a lot twists in this novel as well as a lot of action. One of the highlights is how well the ensemble cast work together and apart. This series really is coming together and its one of those stories that I could picture in my mind as a film. There’s a Star Wars-esque vibe as the plot switches between following different characters. I never feel as if I know what is going to happen next but when the action unfolds it feels right for the characters and circumstances.

Cress cements The Lunar Chronicles as one of my favourite series. I thought the relationships were more developed than in the previous books and the plot was a lot more exciting. I cannot wait for the fourth book in the series, Winter, to be released early 2015.

 

 

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon | Booktopia | Book Depository | BookWorld

Book Review: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Title: Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Genre: Sci-Fi, Fairy Tale, Dystopia 
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (an imprint of Macmillian)
Publication Date: 5th February 2013
Pages: 452
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
The fates of Cinder and Scarlet collide as a Lunar threat spreads across the Earth…

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

My Review:

Scarlet Benoit’s grand-mère, Michelle, has been missing for two weeks. The townfolk of Rieux, France, think that Granny Benoit is crazy and not to worry. But to miss her granddaughter’s eighteenth birthday? Scarlet knows that something is wrong. To top it off she found Michelle’s ID chip – bloody and abandoned. Already suspicious and scared to death that something drastic has happened to her beloved grandmother, there’s a stranger in town with a mysterious and dangerous vibe. Scarred and dishevelled, Wolf wants work as a farm hand but Scarlet doesn’t trust him – he’s never even had a vegetable before! Add in a tattoo, super strength and a career as an unbeatable street fighter, Scarlet fears that he’s behind the mysterious disappearance of her grand-mère.

In a simultaneous storyline picking up just moments after Cinder being thrown into prison, the newly found lost Lunar Princess is making a break for it. An unlikely ally comes in the form of a cell mate named Captain Carswell Thorne and together they try to find out the mysterious circumstances around Cinder’s life before she was a cyborg mechanic from New Beijing.

Picking up just after Cinder left off, I thought it was fantastic how this story evolved during this novel. It’s so easy to forget that Cinder is a sixteen year old girl. She acts with a lot of maturity and a level head – even in the midst of a prison break! I love how her character is growing and I’m excited to see what happens next for her now that she’s embracing her Lunar heritage. Her new companion Carswell Thorne (excuse me – that’s Captain Carswell Throne) is a laugh. He reminded me a little of my four favourite fictional captains (Brannigan from Futurama, Reynolds from Firefly, Harkness from Torchwood and Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean). I loved his comic relief and the snarky, snarly sarcastic banter exchanged between him and Cinder. The addition of some of my favourite characters from the first book, Iko and Kai, really added to the excitement.

The new story of Scarlet and Wolf was interesting. There’s a lot of new drama regarding their relationship and the disappearance of Michelle – who is more than just a granny from a small vegetable growing farm. Everything is ramping up in terms of story – I loved how the seemingly separate lives of Cinder and Scarlet are connected. There’s a lot of action and a dash of romance too. I can’t wait for the third book to be released. I love Meyer’s style and her intelligent, capable heroines.

 

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository