I will start by saying that I really enjoyed this book, however it took me a while to get into it and get to grips with the world. The beginning was a bit jarring for me as you are kind of thrown in the deep end with everything that’s going on and is wrong in New Beijing. Once I got the hang of everything I sped through it. I’m uncertain if the writing style didn’t mesh with me to begin with or it was because I was quite tired from uni but I did find it quite confusing at the start. There was also the occasional time I would get confused by the action happening and have to reread a couple times just to figure out what was going on.
Cinder is a retelling of the classic fairy tale of Cinderella except with a very different world. It’s set in the future where cyborgs exist and no one drives regular cars anymore and people live on the moon. New Beijing where the book is based is threatened by both a war and a horrible plague. The emperor of New Beijing has contracted this plague and his son prince Kai is about to take over and somehow Cinder ends up involved in everything.
The characterisation is fantastic. Kai is just so wonderful, he wants to do what’s best for his people. He’s so young but does what he can to do what he believes will help, which includes giving up what he wants and going against what he believes in. Cinder is lovely and I love the relationship she has with Peony, Meyer opting to have Cinder being close with one of her step sisters. Cinder’s relationship with Kai is so sweet and you find yourself really rooting for them despite the differences between them.
I adored the little parts that were whispers of the original tale of Cinderella. Like the metal foot being left behind instead of a shoe and having a petrol car instead of a pumpkin chariot.
The ending I saw coming from about midway through the book but it still pleasantly surprised me. Meyer does a very good job of making you see where she is going but then presenting information that you believe contradicts what you believe and then you discover you were right all along.
Overall I really enjoyed this book and I’m excited to read the rest in the series and see what happens.