Book Reviews and Highlights

Cinder

Marissa Meyer

  • Adaptations
  • Fairy Tales & Folklore
  • Juvenile Fiction
  • Science Fiction
  • Young Adult Fiction
  • THE SCREW THROUGH CINDER’S ANKLE HAD RUSTED, THE engraved cross marks worn to a mangled circle.
  • Book One | Page: 7
  • #first-sentence
  • Cinder was the only full- service mechanic at New Beijing’s weekly market. Without a sign, her booth hinted at her trade only by the shelves of stock android parts that crowded the walls.
  • Book One | Page: 7
  • #android
  • The netscreens that covered every building and filled the air with the chatter of advertisements, news reports, gossip.
  • Book One | Page: 8
  • #media
  • She was met with startled copper- brown eyes and black hair that hung past his ears and lips that every girl in the country had admired a thousand times.
  • Book One | Page: 9
  • #male-desc #love-interest
  • The android looked like it had just stepped off the conveyer belt, but Cinder could tell from the mock- feminine shape that it was an outdated model. The design was sleek, though, with a spherical head atop a pear- shaped body and a glossy white finish.
  • Book One | Page: 11
  • #android #female-desc
  • “They say you’re the best mechanic in New Beijing. I was expecting an old man.” “Do they?” she murmured.
  • Book One | Page: 12
  • #sexism #female-desc
  • He wasn’t the first to voice surprise. Most of her customers couldn’t fathom how a teenage girl could be the best mechanic in the city, and she never broadcast the reason for her talent. The fewer people who knew she was cyborg, the better.
  • Book One | Page: 12
  • #sexism #android #female-desc
  • The prince listed his head, as if challenging her to contradict him. A strand of black hair fell into his eyes. Cinder looked away.
  • Book One | Page: 12
  • #male-desc
  • “You don’t see a personality like that every day,” said Prince Kai, leaning against the booth’s door frame as if he brought androids to the market all the time. “Did you program her yourself?”
  • Book One | Page: 13
  • #flirting
  • THE EMERGENCY SIRENS HADN’T FADED BEFORE THE HUM OF another engine rumbled into the square.
  • Book One | Page: 17
  • Netscreens implanted into building walls showed live feeds of fire and smoke in downtown New Beijing and panicked headlines in which the toll of infected mounted by the second— even though only one person had been confirmed sick so far as Cinder could tell.
  • Book One | Page: 18
  • #dystopia
  • “All those sticky buns,” Iko said as they passed a close- up shot of the blackened booth. Cinder bit the inside corner of her cheek. Neither of them had ever sampled the acclaimed sweets of the market bakery. Iko didn’t have taste buds, and Chang Sacha didn’t serve cyborgs.
  • Book One | Page: 18
  • #food
  • For half a step, New Beijing Palace could be glimpsed between complexes, sprawling and serene on the cliff that overlooked the city. The palace’s pointed gold roofs sparkled orange beneath the sun, the windows glinting the light back at the city. The ornate gables, the tiered pavilions that teetered dangerously close to the cliff’s edge, the rounded temples stretching to the heavens.
  • Book One | Page: 18
  • #city-desc
  • Not that she hadn’t known the prince lived there every time she’d seen the palace before, but today she felt a connection she’d never had before, and with it came an almost smug delight. She had met the prince. He had come to her booth. He knew her name.
  • Book One | Page: 19
  • #romance #flirting
  • Adri’s lips puckered slightly at the corners. “It will be a miracle if you can find something suitable to wear that will hide your”— her gaze dropped to Cinder’s boots—“ eccentricities. But, yes. If you fix the hover, I suppose you can go to the ball.”
  • Book One | Page: 22
  • No longer can we claim this disease is relegated to the poor, rural communities of our country. Letumosis threatens us all, and we will find a way to stop it.
  • Book One | Page: 23
  • #disease #class-conflict
  • Even Adri’s husband had contracted it on a trip to Europe— the same trip during which he’d agreed to become the guardian of an eleven- year- old orphaned cyborg.
  • Book One | Page: 23
  • #origin-story #cyborg
  • The cyborg draft had been started by some royal research team a year ago. Every morning, a new ID number was drawn from the pool of so many thousand cyborgs who resided in the Eastern Commonwealth.
  • Book One | Page: 25
  • #origin-story
  • It was made out to be some sort of honor, giving your life for the good of humanity, but it was really just a reminder that cyborgs were not like everyone else.
  • Book One | Page: 25
  • #discrimination #cyborg #class-conflict
  • “Oh, my stars! Think about Prince Kai! You could dance with Prince Kai!” This made Cinder pause and squint into Iko’s blinding light. “Why would the prince dance with me?” Iko’s fan hummed as she sought an answer. “Because you won’t have grease on your face this time.”
  • Book One | Page: 27
  • #cyborg #romance
  • “I want to go to the ball,” said Iko, gazing up at the horizon. “It’s prejudice not to let androids attend.”
  • Book One | Page: 34
  • #class-conflict
  • The lingering moon caught Cinder’s attention, and a shock of goose bumps covered her arms. The moon had always given her a sense of paranoia, like the people who lived up there could be watching her, and if she stared for too long, she might draw their attention.
  • Book One | Page: 36
  • Lunars were a society that had evolved from an Earthen moon colony centuries ago, but they weren’t human anymore. People said Lunars could alter a person’s brain—make you see things you shouldn’t see, feel things you shouldn’t feel, do things you didn’t want to do. Their unnatural power had made them a greedy and violent race, and Queen Levana was the worst of all of them.
  • Book One | Page: 36
  • #class-conflict
  • Some conspiracy theorists thought the princess had survived and was still alive somewhere, waiting for the right time to reclaim her crown and end Levana’s rule of tyranny, but Cinder knew it was only desperation that fueled these rumors. After all, they’d found traces of the child’s flesh in the ashes.
  • Book One | Page: 37
  • #sailor-moon
  • “I’m not sure I would label it a ‘survivor,’” said Iko, her sensor darkening with disgust. “It looks more like a rotting pumpkin.”
  • Book One | Page: 39
  • #cinderella
  • She caressed the hood. The car’s dome-shaped body was a yellow-orange shade that looked sickly under Iko’s light—a color that no one in modern times would choose—but with the antique style of the vehicle it bordered on charming.
  • Book One | Page: 39
  • #cinderella #pumpkin
  • She was always so careful not to disturb the neighbors. Not to be noticed. Not to cause a commotion. Not to do anything that could ruin their reputation. Even now.
  • Book One | Page: 52
  • #female-desc
  • “We can still help Peony. They just need cyborgs, to find a cure.”
  • Book One | Page: 52
  • #disease #dystopia #cyborg
  • Cinder clenched her jaw. Someone had been there before—in her head. A fact never forgotten, always ignored. Some surgeon, some stranger, opening her skull and inserting their made-up system of wires and conductors while she had lain helpless beneath them. Someone had altered her brain. Someone had altered her.
  • Book One | Page: 63
  • #cyborg #android
  • But someone was in her head. Inside her. An invasion. A violation. She tried to jerk away, but the android held her firm.
  • Book One | Page: 63
  • #android
  • She was 36.28 percent not human.
  • Book One | Page: 64
  • #cyborg #android
  • Kai glanced at Torin, but the face that met him was unsympathetic. Tact. Diplomacy. Always. Especially when it came to the cursed Lunars.
  • Book Two | Page: 85
  • festival,” said Torin. “Have a whirlwind romance, a happily ever after, and have no more worries for the rest of your days.”
  • Book Two | Page: 88
  • #class-conflict #male-desc #royalty
  • “But what if they’re true?” Kai crossed his arms and ducked his head toward Torin, voice trailing to a whisper. “What if there’s a girl out there who could usurp Levana? Someone even stronger?”
  • Book Two | Page: 88
  • #royalty #foreshadowing
  • “I’m sure I’ll feel much more grateful when I find a guy who thinks complex wiring in a girl is a turn-on.” She kicked her heels against the metal base of the table. “Does this have anything to do with my immunity?”
  • Book Two | Page: 91
  • #female-desc #android #cyborg #insecurity
  • And when I’m dreaming. In her nightmare, the fire always seemed to be hottest beneath her neck, the heat trickling down her spine. The unrelenting pain, like a hot coal had gotten beneath her skin.
  • Book Two | Page: 92
  • #foreshadowing
  • “I hope he’s telling me the truth, because it would be a shame for you to die when we’ve just had the pleasure of meeting.”
  • Book Two | Page: 97
  • #flirting
  • Cinder’s heart tripped as his grin caught her by surprise, every bit as charming and unexpected as it had been at the market. Then her eye spotted the holograph behind him, still showing her inner workings—from the metal vertebrae to her bunched wires to her perfectly intact ovaries. She snapped her gaze back to Kai, pulse racing.
  • Book Two | Page: 98
  • #flirting #romance #cyborg #android
  • A girl. A machine. A freak.
  • Book Two | Page: 98
  • #android #cinderella #cyborg #female-desc
  • He was the fantasy of every girl in the country. He was so far out of her realm, her world, that she should have stopped thinking about him the second the door had closed.
  • Book Two | Page: 100
  • #male-desc
  • “Well—fine, we won’t tell her about the dress or about going to the ball. You don’t have to go with them. You’re better than them. You’re valuable.”
  • Book Two | Page: 106
  • It drew the tattered blanket over Sacha’s unblinking eyes. Instead of answering her question, it said simply, “I have been programmed to follow instructions.”
  • Book Two | Page: 119
  • Then the prince reached for her hand—her cyborg hand.
  • Book Two | Page: 126
  • #cinderella #cyborg #flirting #romance
  • “No,” said Kai, allowing a cold smile. “Eventually, I’ll have an empress for that.”
  • Book Three | Page: 161
  • #flirting #romance #royalty #class-conflict