Read: March 17, 2012
Cinder was what I expected and what I wasn’t expecting. I expected a parallel to the Cinderella tale (which, obviously, is what the book is built upon) but I wasn’t expecting such liberties to be taken with the story. They were well plotted liberties, even if the main basis of the story was so dreadfully predictable. The whole “The princess has been missing” bit brought to Cinder’s attention about twenty-five pages in was just screaming “THIS IS WHAT THIS PLOT IS ABOUT. PLEASE TAKE NOTE.” However, I found I didn’t overly mind the predictability part simply because of the inventive spices added to a common fairy tale.
Enter the existence of cyborgs, mutant humans living on the moon, and a very strange plague. Being a pre-med student with a focus in diseases, I naturally found many flaws in this sickness. For it to be the basis of unrest it needed to be a little less mysterious than it was. The science mentioned was mediocre at best, but this is a work of fantasy and not exclusively a science fiction novel. Meyer wasn’t so ignorant as to build weak plot threads, so this wasn’t much of an issue. I personally appreciated the mechanics of the cyborg people, which was a little more solid than the plague itself.
I literally tore through this book in a day. I do not recommend doing that, as this book mimics the “middle book of a trilogy” syndrome. Simply put, you get a lot of information but nothing substantial to feel like you were granted anything in the story. Yes, it was good with fairly solid characters (most of them tolerable to possibly engaging) but in the end you really get nothing. Nothing from the main points of the story line was accomplished. I kind of felt cheated because I read through four hundred or so pages and wasn’t even tossed a bone for my efforts. If the book had ended in a better cliff hanger, one where I could enjoy what had just happened and reflect on it until the next book up heaves my satisfaction, I think I would have felt better about it. It was almost like Meyer wanted to give us more story and sacrificed a good place to “end” the first installment. It was like drinking watery tea versus a shot of caffeine; yes the tea will last you longer but the caffeine will give you the immediate satisfaction.
I did think the book had a well rounded build, hence the five stars, but I just felt like I was lead asunder. I will read the next book, but I doubt I will keep this series in the long run unless I can glean more satisfaction from the characters or the plot. I’d pick it up at the library first to make sure you like what you read before you fork over money for the hardback.