In Cinder by Marissa Meyer, New Beijing is a city from the future. Humans and androids co-exist, and a deadly plague threatens the human population. In this twist on the classic Cinderella fairy tale, Cinder is a mechanic. She’s also a cyborg. Cyborgs are hated – not human and not android. She doesn’t fit in anywhere. When Cinder’s beloved stepsister falls ill with the plague, Cinder’s stepmother blames Cinder and sends her off to be a test subject for the plague research. Cinder’s past is a mystery. Who is Cinder?
I have to admit to being totally taken in by this re-telling of the Cinderella story. This novel borrows some from the fairy tale, but it also changes the story quite a bit. I also have to admit that I figured out fairly early on just who Cinder is. I liked that she is both tough and tender in this story even though the ability to cry and blush have been taken away from her when she was made cyborg. I like that she is uncertain but also committed. Underneath the computerized, metal parts and pieces, she is still human. I found myself mentally cheering her on more than once. This book is very well written, and I like that it didn’t turn in to a cheesy romance although there is an attraction between Cinder and Prince Kai. Since this is a book in a series, it doesn’t tie everything up neatly with a “happily ever after” at the end. I liked that, too. I am now reading the second book in the series, and I highly recommend these books to anyone who enjoys a different type of read like I do.