Tag: Marissa Meyer

Dec 17

Wind Blows Cold When I Think of Winter (Winter by Marissa Meyer)

Fairy Tales 6

Howdy Bookworms,
I don’t know what my problem is, but every single solitary time I think about the final installment of The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer, I get Tori Amos stuck in my head. I can’t complain because “Winter” by Tori Amos is one of the most beautiful songs of all time, but it has absolutely nothing to do with the spacey robot-tastic fractured fairy tale epic. That’s right, kids, the final installment of The Lunar Chronicles happened and I’m here to tell you about it. Well. At least enough about it without ruining all the things. Since that’s nigh on impossible without discussing earlier books in the series, I recommend that you read Cinder (review), Scarlet (review), Cress (review), and Fairest (review) before reading this review of Winter… Or just accept my big fat SPOILER ALERT right here. Proceed at your own risk.

winterWinter is our resident Snow White. If Snow White lived on the moon and was driven half mad by her refusal to use her man brain manipulation skills, that is. She is known for her beauty which is all the more spectacular since she doesn’t go around bending everyone else’s perceptions to make them think she’s fabulous. She’s got the wickedest stepmother in all the land and she’s madly in love with her childhood pal/palace guard/highly unsuitable mate Jacin.

Luckily, she’s also got some super cool new allies in Cinder (cyborg/long lost princess), Scarlet (farmer and organic produce enthusiast), and Cress (computer programming genius/socially awkward girl recently sprung from captivity on satellite.) Are we all caught up? Oh yes, we can’t forget their various beaus, Kai (Emperor/resident Prince Charming), Wolf (genetically modified super soldier), and Thorne (impossibly handsome rogue criminal mastermind.) Will they be able to defeat Levana? Will they all achieve their various “happily ever afters”? I’m not going to tell you because of spoilers. I will, however, tell you I thought this book, though long, was a quick read, a fun romp, and a worthy end to the series so many have fallen in love with. If you’re a fan of fairy tale retellings, I highly suggest you check out The Lunar Chronicles. Now. If you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go listen to some Tori Amos and make sure the entire range of my feelings are in working order. (You know that scene in Love Actually where Emma Thompson tells Alan Rickman that Joni Mitchell taught his “cold English wife to feel”? That’s me. But with Tori Amos’s Little Earthquakes.)

Talk to me, Bookworms! Have you been reading The Lunar Chronicles? Do you have a feelings album? 

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*

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Apr 24

Give Me a Head of Hair, Long, Beautiful Hair: Cress by Marissa Meyer

Fairy Tales, Young Adult Fiction 16

Hello Bookity Bookworms!

You know I dig a fractured fairy tale, right? I just finished up the latest installment of Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles by reading Cress. If you’re interested, I read and reviewed both Cinder (review) and Scarlet (review) once upon a time as well. Re-reading those posts, I don’t think they reflect how much I really enjoyed these books. I’m going to try to be better this time! Obviously, this is the third book in the series, so talking about it might be a little SPOILERY for the preceding books, and maybe a tiny bit spoilery for Cress  (but only if you can’t guess at super obvious things.) Of course, the books are all based on fairy tales, so you probably know where it’s going anyway. Still. Warning.

cressCress is a retelling of Rapunzel. Cress was born on the moon, but since the Lunars are all evil and stuff, she was sent to die when it was discovered she was a “shell” (that’s the equivalent of a Squib to you Potterheads.) Instead of being killed, Cress was raised in some creepy moon tunnels and imprisoned in a satellite when her talent for computer programming and hacking was discerned. She was stuck in the satellite (er, “tower”) and her hair grew super long. Then, you know, Cinder and Scarlet and the gang are chilling in their spaceship and decide to rescue Cress. Only, things go wrong, adventure ensues. Adventure with androids and spaceships and crashes and deserts and wicked Lunars, naturally.

I think this series is a blast- it’s a lot of fun to toy around with fairy tales and give them new life. As far as Cress goes, I liked that Meyer didn’t fixate on the whole hair thing overmuch, and used some of the elements of the Rapunzel legend that people tend to forget about. Thorne as a character reminds me a LOT of the dashing Flynn Rider (or Eugene Fitzherbert, as it were) from Disney’s Tangled. The thing is, it felt a little too borrowed maybe, because in old school Rapunzel, the handsome prince was just a plain old prince, not a bad boy gone good. That said, I still totally would have fallen for a smolder look from Thorne.

And because I’m nitpicking, Wolf’s ongoing obsession with Scarlet felt very Twilight to me— the fixation seemed a lot like the whole “imprinting” thing. Then again, wolves do have their alphas, so maybe that’s more a wolf trait than a Twilight trait? I don’t know. I’m pretty sure if it came to a wolf fight, Wolf the mutant super soldier could kick Jacob Black’s furry backside. I’m pretty stoked for the final installment, because it’s based on Snow White , and I’m anticipating the mother of all happily ever afters!

Bookworms! I must know. Anybody else out there digging The Lunar Chronicles? Do you love a good fractured fairy tale? What’s your favorite? I’m all ears! (The better to hear you with, of course.)

*If you make a purchase through this site I will receive a small commission. It will be re-invested into books, most likely, because I have a problem.*

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Feb 15

Hey There, Little Red Riding Hood: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Dystopian, Fairy Tales 17

Happy Friday Bookworms!

It’s time to delve back into the wonder that is Project Fairy Tale. I’ve mentioned that the lovely Alison at The Cheap Reader is hosting this event, but I should also mention that my pal Quirky Chrissy (who I know in real life and EVERYTHING) is also participating by dissecting Rumpelstiltskin. Check them out if you’re so inclined. Now, without further ado…

projectfairytalebutton2

Remember back a couple of weeks ago when I reviewed Cinder by Marissa Meyer? The cyborg Cinderella? Of COURSE you remember that. Who could forget? Meyer came back for round two of her fractured fairy tale world of wonder with Scarletwhich is based on my number one girl, Little Red Riding Hood. It’s going to be really hard to not spoil Cinder for you, since this is a sequel, so if you haven’t read it yet and you want to be all surprised and stuff, stop reading this right now. I’m having guilt because I’m THE WORST at keeping spoilers quiet, and most of the time I ruin things without realizing it. Sorry y’all.

We start off by meeting our Little Red Riding Hood. Her name is Scarlet. She’s got red hair and she rocks a red hooded sweatshirt (dip dip dip sweeeeeatshirt sham-a-lama ding dong.) She’s lives with her Grand-Mere (FRENCH! I wish I knew how to make accent marks…) on their farm. They grow vegetables, and for some unearthly reason, milk the cows by hand. Personally, I don’t get that. They’ve got all these robots to work in the fields and stuff, but they’ve got to milk the cow themselves. My suspicious eyebrow is raised (his name is Johnny.) Anyhow, Scarlet’s granny has gone missing, and Scarlet sets out to find her with the help of a mysterious, brooding, and dishy street fighter named Wolf.

scarlet

This cover art isn’t bad, but it’s really hard to compete with a bionic foot, you know?

Wolf’s an interesting fellow. He’s got jacked up teeth and a bit of a rage problem, but he’s also sweet and so innocent he’s never eaten a tomato. Why hasn’t he eaten a tomato? Isn’t that suspicious, Scarlet?! How does a HUMAN never eat a vegetable? Why aren’t you more concerned about this?! I know you want to find your grandmother, and I know Wolf is kind of hot, but DAMN GIRL! Listen to the little voice in your head when it tells you something weird is going on. Of course, that’s actually a pretty faithful adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood, because traditionally, Lil’ Red can’t tell her granny from a wolf in a nightgown. At least Scarlet is packing heat. She may be naive, but she carries a pistol (with a legal permit, of course.)

Every so often, we jog back to visit with Cinder. We get to watch her do badass robot things like break out of prison and hijack a space ship, which is nice, because the primary concern in this world is still defeating and/or thwarting the evil moon queen. SPOILER: she may or may not still be up to her dastardly deeds. SPOILER: She is. SPOILER: When you have an established villain and a major character goes missing, you should expect that they’ve got their wicked little lunar hands in it…

Mr. President, are you suggesting we blow up the moon?

Mr. President, are you suggesting we blow up the moon?

I’ve got to admit, I’m digging this crazy series. I’ll be looking forward to the conclusion to The Lunar Chronicles. What about you, bookworms? Anybody read this one yet?

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Jan 28

Cinder (ella, ella, ella, ay, ay, ay) by Marissa Meyer

Coming of Age, Dystopian, Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction 35

Hey Bookworms!

So you all remember that I’m doing the whole Project Fairy Tale thing in February right? Well. While I was out trolling the interwebs, I noticed that there’s a brand spanking new version of Little Red Riding Hood due on the scene February 5th. The only issue I had was that it was the second in a series… OBVIOUSLY, I needed to read the first book in the series, especially since I’ve seen a bunch of YA book bloggers fawning all over it. The first book in the series is a fractured version of Cinderella- Cinder by Marissa Meyer.

On her way to the ball, she really could have used Rhianna's Umbrella-ella-ella-ay-ay-ay.... Just saying.

On her way to the ball, Cinder really could have used Rhianna’s Umbrella-ella-ella-ay-ay-ay…. Just saying.

Meyer takes the traditional Cinderella story and short circuits it. Instead of being set long ago in a land far, far away, Cinder is set in the distant future. 126 years after the end of the 4th World War, to be precise. Funnily enough, aside from the technological advances, it’s not so different from medieval times. There’s a big fat ugly plague that looks and sounds awfully close to the Bubonic plague. Only this one wasn’t perpetuated by fleas on rats. (Also, in case you were curious, I’ve heard that Bubonic plague, at least the version that decimated a quarter of Europe’s population was caused by a bacterium that would easily lose in a battle against penicillin. Don’t be hating on mold, y’all.)

There’s also, um, robots. Lots of robots. Our heroine is bionic. She was in a terrible accident as a child and instead of spending her life in a wheelchair, surgeons made her part robot. Unfortunately, cyborgs are treated as second class citizens. I had a couple of issues with this bit. Like… The whole cyborg thing basically evolved from making really fancy prosthetic limbs and stuff. I can’t believe a culture that evolved from ours would have too big a bone to pick with advanced prostheses. The prejudice against cyborgs is universal, even if the person’s only got a robot foot. Cinder’s case is a little more complicated though. She’s nearly 40% manufactured and she’s got a computer all up in her brain. It wouldn’t be fair to, say, have her play chess against a normal human, but otherwise I have a hard time believing cyborgs would be so poorly treated. She still has FEELINGS!

Full on androids have no rights at all.

Full on androids have no rights at all. Their feelings are manufactured on personality chips.

Anyway. Cinder is a badass lady mechanic. She gets all greasy and fixes robots and hover cars (sweet right?) and the iPad’s great great great grandbaby. She’s super good at it because A. she’s got a computer in her brain and B. because she learned how to tweak her own mechanical bits and pieces. One day, the Chinese equivalent of Prince Harry shows up and is all “hey Cinder, wanna fix my robot?” And she’s all “ooooh hottie hot hot.” Here’s my other big objection to the book. Monarchy. Seriously? You’re telling me that a peaceful society was able to form based on a monarchy with no apparent checks and balances for 126 years? No uprisings from the unwashed masses? No spoiled royal black sheep in the family tree made a mess of things? I just don’t see it. But it IS Cinderella. I suppose we need a prince.

So anyway. Cinder’s got a pretty rotten stepmother, one mean stepsister, and one nice stepsister (kind of like in Drew Barrymore’s Ever After.) Cinder’s got to fix this robot, deal with plague, and find out all about her mysterious past because there are these evil moon people who want to cause trouble. Yes. You read that right. EVIL MOON PEOPLE. They’re called Lunars, but I can’t hear “Lunar” without hearing Christy Carlson Romano singing “We went to the moon in 1969, that’s when we made a landing that was luuuuuunar!” (Any Even Stevens fans out there? Anyone? Bueller? Yeah. I hear the crickets. I’ll shut up now.) The theory behind the Lunars is that they’ve evolved from a human colony that settled the moon hundreds of years before our story begins. Somehow, they’ve evolved an ability to manipulate people into doing their bidding. It’s sort of like a vampire’s glamour brainwashing. Only they’re from the moon. They’re another monarchy led by the most evil queen who has ever existed. The Lunars keep threatening to go to war with Earth (and despite the fact that the moon is way smaller than the earth, somehow the Lunars have superior technology and would probably decimate mankind.) Also, it’s suggested that the plague was advanced biological warfare sent to earth by the Lunars. Naturally, humans aren’t the biggest fans of the evil moon people.

Now I'm VERY suspicious of you, MOON!

Now I’m VERY suspicious of you, MOON!

When I write it all down with a wee bit of snark, it sounds like the most ridiculous premise ever. I won’t go so far as to say that this was my FAVORITE BOOK EVER ZOMG,  but I was totally drawn in. I embraced the sci fi and found myself hating the evil moon people. I really wanted Cinder and the prince to hook up and live happily ever after! Unfortunately, this is the first book in a series, so I was stuck with a cliffhanger. Luckily, Scarlet comes out in less than a week, so I don’t have long to wait!

Science Fiction at this level of robot-itude is a little out of my reading comfort zone. Do you bookworms like to dabble in different genres, or do you prefer to stick to reading what you’re sure to like?

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