Tuesday, June 26, 2012
I had heard a lot of buzz about Marissa Meyer's Cinder, a retelling of the Cinderella fairy tale featuring a cyborg version of the heroine, so I listened to the audiobook as I packed up my apartment to move. It was such a good decision, as narrator Rebecca Soler was able to make the time speed by.
Linh Cinder is the best mechanic in the futuristic city of New Beijing, toiling away in the local market to support her wicked guardian and her two stepsisters. Looked down upon because she is a cyborg, Cinder spends most of her time with her android friend, Iko. When Prince Kai comes into her shop, asking her to repair his android, he sets off a series of events which change the fate of the entire planet.
Everyone is familiar with the plot of the fairy tale, but Meyer's update is fresh and engrossing. The science fiction aspect was entertaining--I love a world where anything can happen and I never know what to expect. The Asian setting was also appealing; I've lived in Korea and Japan and Meyer perfectly evokes the feeling of a highly populated city and a crowded market. It's safe to assume that Prince Kai is Asian, and I strongly believe that we need more Asian male love interests in YA literature.
Rebecca Soler has a gift for accents which heightened my enjoyment of the book. She convincingly portrays robotic voices, purrs when speaking as the evil Lunar Queen Levana, and imitates the many accents of a variety of world leaders. There are quite a few arguments and technological descriptions in the novel, yet Soler's reading kept me from wanting to skip ahead.
Cinder is the first of four novels in the Lunar Chronicles, with the next one updating Little Red Riding Hood. I am eager to see where this series goes and will be giving that novel a listen as well.