Review of 'Cinder' by Marissa Meyer
9780141340135 pub jan 2012 Puffin
Linh Cinder is Cinderella in situation, with a cruel stepmother who condemns her to arduous work, incessantly streaming tasks into her daily schedule... Particularly when Prince Kai invites the kingdom to a ball.
However, Cinder herself is a feisty mechanic in New Bejing ('old' Bejing was bombed in World War Four,) who had cybernetic surgery resulting in two prosthetic limbs. Outrageously, cyborgs must follow the orders of their guardian... Or stepmother, Linh Adri! During a severe outbreak of Letumosis, Cinder's beloved stepsister Peony becomes infected; Adri blames Cinder, volunteering her as a guinea pig for medical research. Cinder believes that the end has come... Or is it the foundations of freedom?
The author plays on the basis of Cinderella, you're fooled with the front cover- I expected it to be a risque version of the fairy tale, but at the beginning where Cinder's replacing her foot with a reprehensibly expensive one behind Adri's back, I realized it's another story entirely. Cinderella's fairy tale was thrown thousands of years into the future in the plot, but the style not as many years (satisfying the modern, mature reader,) and emotion injected into the story, though I certainly felt strongly about this book too; with empathy for Cinder the teenager, 11+ girls could relate to her and her humourous friends, balanced perfectly with sympathy for Cinder's experiences that most people never have. The only part I didn't like was the cliffhanger at the end- I wanted to know what would happen!
By Abi Pearce