Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Book Review: Scarlet

The fates of Cinder and Scarlet collide as a Lunar threat spreads across the Earth...

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She's trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she'll be the Commonwealth's most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit's grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn't know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother's whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner
. Quoted from Goodreads


After Cinder, I had really high expectations, while trying not to have high expectations. Cinder proved how good Marissa Meyer is at retelling fairytales, but I didn't know how the trend would continue.  I mean, she introduced a bunch of new characters, while maintaining all the ones from the previous book. Luckily, she pulled this off with flying colors.

First, I love Scarlet and Wolf.  In the beginning I didn't care about them that much.  It was Cinder's story I was invested in, and I felt they were sort of interlopers  forced into the story to make it fit the conventions of another fairy tale instead of continuing the story she already had going.  But as the story continued, I grew to love them. Scarlet was strong and brave, everything you expect, contrasting with Wolf, who wasn't what I anticipated at all. When you put a character in that is essentially the big, bad wolf, there are certain expectations that come with that.  He defied all of them (except maybe in looks), and was more adorable because of that.  

I love the way their story mirrored the Little Red Riding hood version, while being as unique and different as Cinder was from Cinderella.  Plus, all of her characters are distinct.  Scarlet wasn't another Cinder with red hair, Wolf was nothing like Kai (or the rather delightful Captain Thorne).  So even though we bounced around between the characters, I never once got confused about whose head I was living in.

I love Iko as a ship. She was funny in the first book, but putting her in a ship (one with a naked lady on the side) was just one of those fun twists I didn't expect but thoroughly enjoyed.  I also really grew to like Captain Thorne, and can't wait to see exactly who/what he ends up becoming later (I have my guesses, but we'll see how good I am). Then there's Cinder and Kai.  No, we don't get quite as much of them as in the previous book, but their story is still gripping, and I didn't feel cheated by the new characters at all.

Plus, we get more of the delightfully evil Lunar Queen and her diabolical plots to overthrow earth.  She really is an excellent villain.  Even Kai, who is the Emperor of one of the six Earthen countries, is intimidated and browbeaten into doing what she wants (and not because he is week, but forced into an impossible situation).  We get to see more of her plots unfold in this book, and with every page, I grow to hate her just a little more.  

Basically, you need to read this series.  It's fun, full of adventure, and one of the best adaptions out there.  This is a wonderful 4.5 stars for me (again).  Now I'm suffering with  the rest of the masses until next year with the release of Cress.  Already I'm counting down the days. Now here's the preview in case all my gushing didn't convince you to read the book.

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