A - E, Allgemein, C, Reviews

Review: Cress (Marissa Meyer)

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Rating: 4 Pfoten

”Kiss her, she thought. Isn’t that what people did after they survived thrilling, near-death experiences together? She was sure it wasn’t an appropriate suggestion, but this close, it was all she could think about.”

Ahh, Cress is such a romantic! ❤ The way she swooned over Thorne was just adorable! But let’s not get off topic here and focus on the overall review instead! This said “Cress” was already the third book in “The Lunar Chronicles” and basically everybody and their grandma told me that it’s the best book in the series. Of course there were also a couple of voices that said it’s the weakest book in the series so I decided to just read it and form my own opinion. (As always. Did you expect anything different from me? ;-P)

So did “Cress” live up to my expectations or not? Well, the answer is: Yes, I think it did. It was very entertaining and I loved to see how the story of all those different characters came together in the end. What I really liked about this book was that we got some background info about all the characters and that some of them finally got a chance to confront not only each other but also their personal problems as well. No matter if it’s Cinder, Thorne, Cress or Wolf, they all experience things that force them to act and ultimately lead them to finding themselves and their own path in this (by now very) huge storyline.

Interestingly enough Queen Levana didn’t have an all too big part in this instalment but I’m actually glad she had a secondary role. It gave our protagonists room to plan their next moves and to come to terms with their destiny and their individual parts in the game. The introduction of Princess Winter and Jacin was interesting as well and I can’t wait to read their story. Considering Winter’s mental state I’m sure it’s going to be quite something though. XD For now let’s get down to business and talk about the MCs of “Cress”!

2

If you dare to take a trip to the Sahara be my guest! It’s wise to be careful though, there are many dangers that can be found in the desert and mirages and spoilers are just two of them. ;-P Consider yourself properly warned. That’s all I can do for you, my friend!

Cress:

Cress glanced up, and though his expression was sympathetic, she thought he was probably mocking her. ”I’m not crazy. I know she’s just a computer. It’s just … I programmed her myself, and she was the only friend I had. That’s all.“

Okay, Cress is probably one of the most innocent characters I ever came across in a book but considering she spent almost her entire life on an isolated satellite this doesn’t really come as a surprise. (On a side note: You just gotta love how Meyer turned the initial tower into a satellite. ;-P) She is definitely a cinnamon roll and it’s no wonder she had troubles to adapt to the life on earth. I suppose everyone would have troubles to adapt to life in a desert though so I think she actually did pretty well! Also I kinda liked the contrast of her being a hacker wizard on the keyboard and knowing nothing about the real world. XD I’m very curious where her character arc will head. Still, to find out Dr. Erland was her father was really quite the plot twist. It makes me sad that he died before they could get to know each other. T_T

”She tried to swallow down the rising panic, this sensation that her existence was as small and unimportant as the tiniest fleck of sand blowing against her shins. There was a whole world – a whole planet. And she was stuck somewhere in the middle of it, away from everything. There were no walls, no boundaries, nothing to hide behind. A shudder swept over her, goose bumps crawling across her bare arms.”

Thorne:

”Yeah, I guess you’re right,” he said, squeezing. “Maybe there’s a little bit of a hero in me after all. But … really, Cress. Only a little.”

Poor boy had it really rough in here. He lost his sight due to the satellite crashing and I was really worried about him. I think it was amazing that he never gave up though. You could tell that he was struggling with his fate and had trouble to adjust to a life without his eye sight but he did what needed to be done and he helped Cress as best as he could. Some might say Thorne is arrogant and self-assertive but I know he isn’t. It’s just a way to hide his insecurities and he is indeed the misunderstood hero Cress thought him to be. I loved to get a glimpse at his true thoughts and to see his character arc was really amazing. ❤ Thorne came a long way and I think his journey isn’t over yet.

”She was a girl. A living girl, smart and sweet and awkward and unusual, and she was worth far more than they could ever realize.”

”It seemed like hours since he’d so flippantly said good-bye to Cress, when she was still in the bath, when her singing was still echoing in his ears. And he’d left her. He’d just left her – and why? To show off his gambling skills? To prove that he was still self-sufficient? To prove that he didn’t need anyone, not even her?“

Cinder:

”Of course I will. I’m the rightful heir!”
She drew back, stunned by her own words. She didn’t think she’d ever felt so invested in her identity, and determined to claim her place. It was a strange feeling, bordering on pride.

Cinder actually accepted her powers, but she still feels conflicted about them and I think that’s a good thing! I loved to see how she got stronger and started to see the Lunars as her people and came to terms with her identity. She had to make a lot of difficult choices though and I was really afraid that she might break under the pressure. To think you’re just a cyborg that works as a mechanic and to realize you’re the rightful heir to Luna… I can’t even fathom how tough this must have been. It’s no wonder she’s so insecure, but she has a lot of people that love and support her so I’m sure she’ll make her way. =)

”Standing on the hotel step, with sixty guns trained on her, Cinder realized she was no better than that thaumaturge. This really was war, and she really was in the middle of it.
If she had to make sacrifices, she would.”

“News flash: I have never manipulated you. And I hope I never have to. But you aren’t the only one with responsibilities and an entire country of people who are relying on you. So I’m sorry, Your Majesty, but you are coming with me, and you’re just going to have to figure out whether or not you can trust me when we’re not so pressed for time.”

”You want to know another secret? The biggest secret?” She sat, splaying her legs like a broken doll in front of her. “I’m scared, Kai. I’m so scared.” She thought it might feel better, to say the words out loud, but instead they only made her feel pathetic and weak.

Kai:

”Excellent. And have you given any thought to your wedding vows?”
Kai snorted. “Delete anything that has to do with love, respect, or joy, and I’ll sign on the dotted line.”

Seriously whenever I read about Kai’s and Levana’s upcoming wedding I felt dread! >_< I really, really, really didn’t want him to marry her and ahhh the mere idea of their wedding was already enough to cause me to scream and tear at my hair! He still defied her though and I’ll never get tired of this boys defiance! *lol* Kai is the best and I love him so much! <333 The things he did for his country and people were amazing and I hated to see his self-doubt and insecurity. He did everything he could and it’s not his fault Levana was cunning enough to plan this invasion for years or even decades. It could have happened to his father if he wouldn’t have died of the plague so I really hope he stops blaming himself for everything that happened. It’s not his fault. T_T

”He hated Levana. He hated himself for giving in to her. He hated that his father had managed to keep her and her threats of war at bay for years and years, and within weeks of Kai taking the throne, he’d let everything fall apart.”

”Maybe she’s trying to help me. Cinder knows that if she finds the princess, it could be the end of Levana’s rule. I wouldn’t have to marry her. She would probably be executed for treason. Cinder risked her life going to that farm, and she did it … she may have done it for me.”

”He would never tell Torin that a part of him hoped Cinder would be safe. And he would never tell a single living soul how terrified he was, every moment of every day. How afraid he was that he was making an enormous mistake.”

Iko:

”Aaaaw,” squealed Iko. “Did Wolf just say that he loves Scarlet? That’s so cute!”

Iko fangirling over Scarlet and Wolf was one of the best things in this book! *lol* She’s basically the embodiment of every shipper and the comical relief of this series. XD Also I almost choked when she spoke about Adri and Pearl. Haha! I just adore Iko and I’m so glad she got a new body now. Thorne really picked the perfect robot. It’s a shame she got hurt when she tried to help them, but I’m sure Cinder will find a way to fix her. =)

”See? Injustice. Here we are, risking out lives to rescue Kai and this whole planet, and Adri and Pearl get to go to the royal wedding. I’m disgusted. I hope they spill soy sauce on their fancy dresses.”

Jacin:

”Because Thaumaturge Mira was preoccupied with your operative. Otherwise, I would have been the same brainless mannequin that I usually am.” His tone was self-deprecating, but Cinder could detect bitterness beneath it. Nobody liked to be controlled, and she didn’t think anyone ever got used to it.

Now here’s a new character that has me intrigued. Mostly because he’s still one big question mark and we all know how much I love question marks. XD But please, Jacin! I don’t believe you a single second that you’re not in love with Princess Winter! He so is! It was pretty obvious. After what I saw from Winter I can’t help but wonder about their relationship though. Is his love one-sided, does she reciprocate? I need answers and since the last book is named “Winter” I’m sure I’ll get them soon. 😉

”Do you … do you love her?”
He glared at her, disgusted. “Don’t try to push your swoony psychodrama on me. I’m sworn to protect her. Can’t very well do that from down here, can I?”

3

Cress & Thorne:

”Carswell Thorne wasn’t a heartless scoundrel at all. If anyone bothered to get to know him, they would see that he was compassionate and chivalrous.
He was exactly the kind of hero Cress had been dreaming about her entire life.”

Those two are such an unlikely pair but they still worked somehow. XD I loved them together and they were pretty cute. I mean Cress is super innocent and Thorne well, let’s just say he has a lot of experience with women and all sorts of crimes. *lol* Despite everything they are still kind of perfect for each other. I loved that Cress brought out the compassionate and chivalrous side of Thorne and that he didn’t care about who she was or how she looked like. The fact that he couldn’t see her might have helped to see her inner values more clearly but that was exactly what it was supposed to do so yeah. Also Thorne protecting Cress and taking care of her was legit the cutest thing! She saw his true self long before he saw it and I think her believing that he’s a good person might have helped to actually make him one. Plus can we appreciate that Thorne is super gentle and caring with her. He’s kind of a rake but he got all protective and considerate with her. So, nope, I don’t agree with Dr. Erland. I think Thorne is exactly what Cress needs! <333

”But you’re a prisoner,” said Thorne.
“I prefer damsel in distress,” she murmured.
One side of Thorne’s mouth quirked up, into that perfect half smile he’d had in his graduation photo. A look that was a little bit devious, and all sorts of charming.

He rubbed her shoulder. It was the kind of touch that would have filled her with giddiness and yearning if she hadn’t been too tired to feel anything. “You have to trust me, Cress. I’m going to get us out of this.”

”Good idea,” he said, wrapping an arm around her waist. “How could they not think that we’re in love?”
“How couldn’t they?” she murmured. She squeezed her eyes shut and tried to memorize the exact feel of him.

Knees suddenly weak, she reached for his forearms to stabilize herself. “You came for me.”
He beamed, looking for all the world like a selfless, daring hero.
“Don’t sound so surprised.” Dropping the cane, he pulled her into a crushing embrace that tore her away from Wolf and lifted her clean off the floor.

”While Cress’s thoughts continued to churn through the horrible things that could happen to her, she felt herself being suddenly sprung around and dipped backward, a supportive arm scooping beneath her back. She yelped and caught herself on Thorne’s shoulder.
Then he was kissing her.”

Cinder & Kai:

”Right. And what if I’d said, oh, sure, Your Highness, I’d love to go to the ball with you, but first you should probably know that I’m cyborg. And then what?”
Kai looked away.
“You never would have talked to me again,” she answered for him. “You would have been mortified.”
“So you were just going to keep it hidden forever?”
“Forever?” Cinder waved her arm toward the window. “You are the emperor of an entire country. There was never going to be a forever.”
He was surprised how much the words stung. She was right.

I was so glad they finally got a chance to talk!!! This conversation was so overdue and I was damn happy when they eventually had their confrontation! Also I remember wishing that Cinder would kidnap Kai before he marries Levana when I wrote my Scarlet review and well, it happened! *lol* Marissa Meyer actually threw me a bone here! YAY! XD I guess now that Cinder cleared things up and Kai knows that she’s Princess Selene they got closer to getting their happily ever after and I can’t wait for it to happen!!! <333 I ship them, HARD! Both on their own couldn’t do a lot against Levana but Cinder and Kai together? They’ll crush her! I know they will because they have the potential to be a power couple! 😉 And it definitely helps that they both know how it feels to be responsible for an entire nation. They can support each other and push through their doubts together and I’m so ready to see that!!! ❤

He lifted his gaze. “Just to be clear, you’re not using your mind powers on me right now, are you?”
She blinked. “Of course not.”
“Just checking.”
Then he slid his arms around her waist and kissed her.

”Arms wrapped around her. Cinder pressed her face against his silk shirt. There was some sort of cologne or maybe soap there – so faint she hadn’t picked up on it before.
“I know exactly how you feel,” Kai said.
She squeezed her eyes shut. “Not exactly.”
“I think pretty close.”

Scarlet & Wolf:

Cupping his chin, Scarlet tilted Wolf’s face away from her and pressed a kiss against the wound. He inhaled sharply, but otherwise became as still as a rock – an unusual feat for him.”

They broke my freaking heart!!! T_T I can’t believe Scarlet got kidnapped by Sybil and ended up as a prisoner on Luna. I felt so sorry for both of them because Wolf knew exactly what they’d do to her and Scarlet suffered so damn much. >_< Poor girl!!! I could understand why Wolf considered her to be dead because the torture she went through physically as well as mentally will leave its scars and make her a different person than she used to be. Ahhh! I feel so damn sorry for Scarlet! To lose her grandmother was already horrible enough but now this?! T_T I really hope Meyer gives my girl a break in the next book! Wolf and her deserve to be happy and neither of them are right now and it’s just not fair. =(((

”She suppressed the voice out of nervous panic that her mistress would sense her confusion. She did not want that. There was no confusion.
She knew precisely where she wanted to be. Precisely who she wished to be serving.”

”But then Wolf’s breath hitched and all the fury drained out of him with a shudder. Like a man shot fatally through the heart, he collapsed over his knees, covering his head with his good arm like he wanted to block out the world.”

”The illusion and the pain vanished, but the horror lingered. The rawness of her throat. The damp salt on her face. Scarlet rolled onto her side, sobbing in the middle of the playroom floor, grateful that the boy couldn’t maintain the brainwashing while he was distracted.”

4

All told “Cress” was one of those sequels in which most of the plotlines come together and finally turn into one central theme. The only loose thread that’s still left is Winter’s and Jacin’s story and I’m already very curious about it. I really liked that some of the character’s problems were addressed, resolved and smoothed out. This lays a good foundation for the final book and I’m ready to read it soon! =)

Allgemein, P - T, Reviews, S

Review: Scarlet (Marissa Meyer)

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Rating:4 Pfoten

Book 15 on My Book List 2021

”Your mom never made you eat your vegetables, did she?”
Their gazes clashed and the awkwardness was immediate.

Well, nope?! He’s the big bad wolf after all and I found it kind of hilarious that he loved tomatoes. *lol* This said, “Scarlet” was another great addition to “The Lunar Chronicles” and even though the Star Wars vibes weren’t as strong in this one as in the first book I still enjoyed it a lot and was very intrigued by Scarlet’s and Wolf’s story.

Interestingly this book picked up where the first one left off. So we didn’t only get Scarlet’s story that played in France, but also continued our journey with Cinder that still (mostly) took place in New Beijing. For me both plot lines were very interesting and the fast pacing of Scarlet’s chapters was a nice counterweight to the rather slow chapters of Cinder and Emperor Kai. Still, the fact they had a slow pace definitely didn’t mean that they weren’t super intriguing and suspenseful as well, because they definitely were. 😉

I guess we can all agree that Queen Levana is quite a formidable antagonist so the Kai chapters had me clasping my fingers and hoping that she wouldn’t do something unforgivable to him. He’s too precious and I don’t want to see him hurt. And speaking of precious characters: The new addition of Thorne and the return of Iko made this even more fun. *lol* We finally got some answers in “Scarlet” and I can’t wait to read the next book! I’m sure there’s even more to come and I’m looking forward to see where Marissa Meyer will take this series. =) For now we’ll talk about “Scarlet” though and as always I have thoughts. (I always do, don’t I? ;-P)

2

Bonjour, my fellow readers! You are now entering the spoilery territory of my review and if you haven’t read “Scarlet” already I’d recommend leaving this review. If you’re too curious… Well, don’t say I didn’t warn you. We all know: Curiosity kills the cat! ;-P

Scarlet:

”I just think we shouldn’t judge her, or anyone, without trying to understand them first. That maybe we should get the full story before jumping to conclusions. Crazy notion, I know.”

Ahh Scarlet and her shotgun! I really liked that girl! *lol* She’s super independent, can stand her ground and is very down-to-earth, which are all good traits. And she’s very compassionate and always thinks of others first. I loved how much she cared about her grandmother and how determined she was to find her and to get her back to safety. When Scarlet finally reached her grandma it broke my heart though. They only had a couple of pages together and when she died I was so sad. You could feel their strong bond and their love for each other and if Scarlet now feels like eliminating Queen Levana’s soldiers with her shotgun for what they did to her grandma… well go ahead girl! XD The poor old lady deserved so much better than to be tortured by those Lunars. T_T I really hope Scarlet will get over the loss of her grandmother and that she’ll come out of it even stronger than before. Give my girl a shotgun in “Cress” and let’s see what will happen next! ;-P

”I suspect you would shoot me all over again if you thought it would help your grandmother.”
She blinked up at him, almost surprised to discover how close they were standing. “I would,” she said, “But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be sorry about it afterward.”

”Mademoiselle Benoit retrieved,” she said, planting her heel on the back of the dazed, blank-faced soldier and shoving him off the ramp. “And don’t worry, we’ll take Alpha Kesley off your hands.”

Wolf:

”The only way to prevent becoming an omega is to fight. And to win. That’s why I do it. That’s why I’m good at it.”

Wolf was such an enigma! From the very first moment he appeared on page I wondered about his motives and why he helped Scarlet. His heightened senses, the predatory actions and his appearance, it all had me wondering if he would turn on Scarlet and in the end he actually did. Despite all that I’m pretty certain that we got to see the real Wolf. Beneath the animal there’s still a person and it’s struggling for control. I always wondered why he was so scared around Scarlet and I finally realized that he was afraid of her because she made him feel like a human being, like a person and not an animal. So that kind of made me wonder about how he was raised and how he became one of Levana’s soldiers. He’s certainly no normal Lunar and it was hinted that Levana sort of “breeds” them, whatever that means. The last scene showed her soldiers in some sort of boot camp so I guess she trains them? I really hope we’ll find out more about this in the next books or that “The Queen’s Army” will be able to answer some of my questions. XD For now I’ll give Wolf the benefit of the doubt.

His hands hastily brushed the curls from her face, gripped her shoulders, rubbed her bruised wrist, every ounce of his frenetic energy devoted to checking that she was there. That she was all right. “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I lost focus, I slipped – I’m sorry. Scarlet. Are you all right?”

”His jaw worked as if to take in a bigger gulp of hair.
She could see his fight. His struggle. As clearly as she could see the animal – the wolf – in him. As clearly as she could still see the man.

”I appreciated everything you gave me.” He picked up the can of olives and sniffed at them, wary of being tricked again. “Although I didn’t deserve any of it.”

Cinder:

”What are they doing?”
“Obeying,” she said heavily, hating herself for making the command. Hating the hums that filled her ears. Hating this gift that was too unnatural, too powerful, too unfair.

Cinder had quite a lot to digest in this book and it’s no wonder she’s kind of insecure about what to do and how to proceed. I guess to find out that you’re a long lost princess that was almost killed by your own evil aunt would be tough for everyone. XD She’s still trying to make sense of everything that happened and with Levana’s henchmen and every citizen of earth looking for her she didn’t even get a break to come to terms with her new status as a princess and fugitive. Not to mention that she still has feelings for Kai and must feel pretty betrayed by his actions. Considering what Levana did to her I’m kind of glad she has no conscious memory of what happened when she was a little kid though. >_< I wonder if Cinder will accept her powers in “Cress” or if she’ll still feel conflicted about them. Let’s hope she’ll make peace with them. I mean it’s not like the entire world depends on that, right? *lol*

”Levana had tried to kill her when she was only three years old.
Her operation had been completed when she was eleven.
Eight years. In a tank, sleeping and dreaming and growing.
Not dead, but not alive either.”

Kai:

”What he didn’t know was how many times she’d glamoured him before that. How many times she’d tricked him. How many times she’d made him out to be a complete fool.”

POOR KAI!!! To read his POV was pure torture! I felt so sorry for him because he doesn’t know about Cinder’s connection to Levana and has no idea what’s actually at stake. Not that he would need any more pressure. He’s basically holding his country together by sheer force of will. To say he’s between a rock and a hard place would be putting it more than just mildly. If you ask me it’s admirable that he even tries to defy Queen Levana! A lot of people would have cowered before her if she’d taken away their voice, but Kai? He still uses every single one of his breaths to annoy the hell out of her. It’s the only way he can defy her and boy does he give her a run for her money. *lol* Still, the pressure was too much and I hated to see him crumble. ARGH! I hated every single moment he had to wait for Levana to stop her attack. The price was too high and Kai basically gave his life for his people by agreeing to marry her. T_T Kai deserves so much better than that… so, so much better.

”Sensation returned to his tongue and Kai threw a thankless smile at Aimery. He then proceeded to do the most disrespectful thing he could think of – he pulled his chair back from his desk and sat down. Tripping back, he folded his hands over his stomach.”

”With the click of the latch, Kai let himself crumble into his chair. His entire body was shaking. It was suddenly so clear that he wasn’t ready for this. He wasn’t strong enough or smart enough to fill his father’s shoes. He couldn’t even keep Levana out of his own office – how was he going to protect an entire country from her – an entire planet?”

Thorne:

Then, “You’re … rather handsome, Captain Thorne.”
Cinder groaned.
“And you, my fine lady, are the most gorgeous ship in these skies, and don’t let anyone ever tell you different.”

Don’t you love a guy that calls himself Captain and is afraid of cockroaches? *lol* I’m not gonna lie, my first impression of Thorne wasn’t really a favourable one. XD To be honest my exact words were: He’s not the brightest candle on the cake. *lol* Which still holds true but the more I got to know him the more I realized that he’s like an adorable puppy. He has no idea what he’s doing but his heart is in the right place and sometimes he’s even downright reasonable. Haha! I think that makes him a great addition to the cast and I’m definitely looking forward to more of his dumb genius moments. In short: He’s super goofy and his rakish attitude makes him very entertaining. XD Considering the next book is “Cress” I’m pretty sure we didn’t see the last of him and that my wish to see more of him will come true soon. ;-P

”I get that you feel like it was your fault, but let’s try to put some of the blame where it belongs here.”

Queen Levana:

”Your Majesty,” Kai said, addressing the queen with, he thought, an admirable lack of contempt. “What a pleasant surprise.”
“One more patronizing comment and I will have you slice off and nail your own tongue to the palace gate.”

Isn’t Levana a sunshine? *lol* No, honestly, I hate that witch! With a fierce passion and the power of a thousand suns. This woman is horrible and I refuse to call her Queen. From now on I’ll only call her Levana because she certainly doesn’t deserve the title. Every once in a while you stumble upon a villain you can’t like because it’s such a horrible person and well, that would be Levana in my case. Guess there’s nothing that could redeem her in my eyes. I hate what she did to Wolf and all her other subjects and I hate her even more for using her power in order to bully Kai into a marriage with her. That cold and calculating, conniving, cruel WITCH! ARGH! I swear if she really marries Kai I’m going to throw that book against a wall. >_<

3

Scarlet & Wolf:

Scarlet’s brow was ceased as she inched toward him. “Do that again.”
He took half a step back, eyes glinting with sudden nerves. “Do what?”
“Smile.”

This was insta-love par excellence, but I still kind of shipped them? I guess we can cut them some slack because they got to know under really dire circumstances and if you take Wolf’s nature into consideration it’s kind of logical that he’d fall for someone hard and fast. Love seems to be connected to his instincts and since he’s such an instinct driven boy it’s no wonder he loves Scarlet. As for Scarlet… I have no explanation for her insta-love other than that she obviously digs broody handsome boys… don’t we all somehow? *lol* I don’t know how I feel about his betrayal though. From a logical perspective he’s as free as Kai is, so not free at all because his free will has been manipulated for years, but still. If I’d be Scarlet I would feel bitter about my grandmother’s death. I guess it works in his favour that he wasn’t around when they captured and tortured her. =( Ahh what a complicated mess… let’s hope that now he’s out of their reach he’ll be his own master and make his own decisions.

”Don’t come near me. I don’t want to see you. I don’t want to listen to you. I would rather die than ever be touched by you again.”
She saw a gulp straining against his throat. Hurt flashed across his face but it only served to make her angrier.

”I know you don’t want to hurt me, Wolf.”
His nose bumped against her jaw. His breath caressed her collarbone.
“You helped me. You rescued me.”

”I know we met less than a week ago and in that time I’ve done nothing but lie and cheat and betray you. I know. But if you give me a chance … all I want is to protect you. To be near you. For as long as I’m able.”

Cinder & Kai:

”But Kai wasn’t his father. He wasn’t that selfless.
Knowing it was wrong, he couldn’t help but wish that wherever Cinder had gone, they would never find her.”

So we basically didn’t get any “Cinder & Kai” moments in “Scarlet” but that doesn’t mean that they didn’t think about each other because they did. Kai still cares about her and this even though he doesn’t even know the entire truth. And Cinder basically went ballistic when she heard of his engagement with Levana, which most definitely had nothing to do with him being foolish but everything with him agreeing to marry that despicable person. *lol* Ahh I really want those two to meet and to talk things out. Can’t Cinder idk… kidnap Kai before he marries Levana? XD Throw me a bone here Marissa! ;-P

Cinder & Thorne:

”You opened my control panel?” she said, her words a little clearer with anger behind them.
He scowled. “I didn’t want to.”

Hahaha!!! What an accusation! It almost sounded like they were intimate which I suppose they actually were? Control panels are tricky things like that. *lol* Anyway, I really appreciated the blooming friendship between Thorne and Cinder and I was so there for their moments. I think without Thorne Cinder wouldn’t even have come as far as she did because in his own way he supported her and helped her to continue. I was really glad she had him at her side and wasn’t all alone with her problems. Even though Thorne only found out about her real identity at the ending of the book. *lol* Their friendship is still precious and I hope we’ll have more Cinder/Thorne moments in “Cress”.

”Yeah, because we’re famous.” He sang the word with a certain measure of pride. When Cinder rolled her eyes, he nudged her in the arm. “Oh, come on, it could be worse.”
She quirked an eyebrow at him and his grin broadened.
“At least we have each other.” He held out his arms, like he would have given her a huge hug if they hadn’t been strapped into their seats.

4

I think in a lot of ways “Scarlet” is such a typical second book. The world expands; new characters are introduced and old ones continue on their journey. Some questions are answered, new ones appear and the stage is set. 😉 All things considered this was a worthy sequel and I’m excited to read book 3. Apparently it’s even better than the first two and I’m ready to be blown away! XD

A - E, Allgemein, C, Reviews

Review: Cinder (Marissa Meyer)

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Rating:4 Pfoten

Book 2 on My Book List 2019

“Vanity is a factor, but it is more a question of control. It is easier to trick others into perceiving you as beautiful if you can convince yourself you are beautiful. But mirrors have an uncanny way of telling the truth.”

After finishing “Cinder” I was kind of curious what other reviewers wrote about it and I was pretty surprised when I found out that a lot of my friends gave it only two or three stars. As it seems the main reason for those low ratings were 1.) It’s just not my jam or 2.) I read too many retellings. Sometimes even a combination of both. XD

Well, I guess it’s kind of good then that I wasn’t all too big on retellings over the last few years because I definitely enjoyed this! I don’t know if I would have liked it less if I would have read more retellings, but as some sort of “newbie” to the scene I actually ended up loving it to bits and pieces!

This was just amazing! ❤ I mean a cyborg Cinderella who’s a mechanic and lives in a futuristic world?! Sign me f*** up! I loved the entire New Beijing vibe and I was so down for all those “Star Wars” moments! XD (And just in case you wondered, I’ve been a Warsie AND a Trekkie since my early childhood days! *lol* Being a fan of both is impossible? Hah! I’m your living and breathing proof it’s not! ;-P) Anyway! I relished the breath of fresh air this retelling gave me and after reading all those “normal” fairy tales with my kid this was balm for my soul. *lol*

Finally something different! Finally a break from “Cinderella” who lost her glass slipper on the stairs. This so wasn’t your ordinary fairy tale and Cinder certainly wasn’t your ordinary heroine either. Before I go into more detail, I’ll head into my characters section though. Wouldn’t want you to get spoiled, right?! (Is it even spoiling if we all know about Cinderella’s story? *lol*)

2

Fair Warning: This is a spoiler well. If you lean forward you might tumble into the rabbit hole. I urge you to exercise caution. Proceed at your own risk. ;-P

Cinder:

“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.”

Haha! I loved Cinder! She was such a cool character and totally down-to-earth! Funnily enough she didn’t seem to enjoy beautiful dresses (the real Cinderella would have been shocked!) and rather preferred to stay in her room working on androids instead of going out. Which in all honesty made her a very relatable character. XD I liked that she was so strong-willed and had her own opinion about everything, but I also felt very sorry for her. Aside from Prince Kai and Dr. Erland, Peony was probably the only person who ever showed her some kindness and to lose her must have been a more than just hard blow. >_< Especially because Peony was just lovely and kind! I don’t know how it came to be that Peony was the only one who accepted Cinder the way she was but I was really glad that she had at least one sister that cared. XD Still, no matter how sad her death made me I think Cinder would have never dared to be so bold if she would have been around to see it, so I guess there’s at least one positive thing that came out of it. Poor Cinder though! T_T

A flash of hurt crossed his face. “What? I can’t buy you a gift?” he asked, in a tone that nearly stopped the electric pulses of her wiring.
“No. Not after I’ve ignored six of your comms in the last week. Are you dense?”
“So you did get them!”

Prince Kai:

Kai stepped closer to Torin, ignoring a group of lab technicians that were forced to swarm around them. „I have a plan. My plan is to not marry her. Diplomacy be damned. There. End of discussion.”

WHAT. A. HOTTIE! *swoons* I adored him right from the moment he appeared in the book! GAH! Prince Kai was just awesome! I loved that he didn’t back down and fought Queen Levana with every breath he took. There was so much at stake for him but he stayed true to himself and this even though Levana and the other countries certainly didn’t make it easy for him. So much pressure! Poor boy! =(( Plus can we acknowledge how caring he was even though his own life turned upside down. I mean he lost his father to the plague and yet he still managed to keep Levana at bay, served his country, tried to persuade Cinder and wanted to find a cure. XD Not to mention his adorable humour and enticing defiance. *lol* The perfect prince for sure! 😉

”I will –“ He paused again, straightened, and focused his eyes on some distant, invisible point. “I will do whatever needs to be done to ensure the well-being of my country. I will do whatever needs to be done to keep you all safe. That is my promise.”

Iko:

Iko rolled to her side, clasping her metal grippers over her chest. “Prince Kai! Check my fan, I think I’m overheating.”

IKO!!! <333 She was one of the best sidekicks ever and she definitely asked the right questions. *LOL* The idea of an android with feelings might have been nothing new but the way it was executed in here was perfect! XD When you read about Iko you involuntarily see her as a normal person, well until some body parts of her are mentioned and you’re reminded that she’s actually a machine with a soul. 😉 I can’t believe Adri destroyed her and my poor heart bled when Cinder found her in her room. I really hope Cinder will find a new body for her and that this time around it will be a human looking one. Iko deserves it and she’d be so happy if she’d have curves to wear all those pretty dresses. *lol*

Cinder flinched. “Can we please not talk about the prince?”
“I don’t think that will be possible. You’re working on his android, after all. Just think about the things she knows, the things she’s seen and –“ Iko’s voice sputtered. “Do you think she’s seen him in the nude?”

Queen Levana:

”I want her found and brought to me.”
“Right,” said Kai, “that’ll be no problem in a city of two and a half million people. Let me just go dig out my special Lunar detector, and I’ll get right on that.”
Levana tilted her head back so she could peer down her nose at Kai, even though he was taller than she was. “You do not wish to try my patience with your sarcasm, young prince.”

Queen Levana is no fun! Seriously, that woman has a stick up her ass. >_< The way she treated Kai and all her machinations… I really despised her for it! How can anyone be so cruel and heartless? I mean that moment with the mirror on her plate? ARGH! If I’d have been Prince Kai I’d have flipped her the bird multiple times. *lol* I guess in his own way he actually kind of did it. Haha! Considering how Cinder reacted to her once she saw through her glamour she must be as ugly on the outside as she’s on the inside and I really hope she won’t get Kai.

Adri:

”I think it a fair solution. After all, you bought it with my money, therefore it is mine to do with as I please. In some cultures they would cut off your hand, Cinder. Consider yourself fortunate.
“But it’s my foot!”
“And you will have to do without it until you can find a cheaper replacement.” She glowered at Cinder’s feet. Her lip curled with disgust. “You are not human, Cinder. It’s about time you realized that.”

There were moments when I wasn’t sure which one of them is worse. Adri or Queen Levana? And honestly sometimes I was even inclined to give Adri first place. For some of the things she did, she would have deserved to stand on the pedestal. *shakes head* I really don’t know what’s eating her but after reading “Glitches” I’m fairly certain that it had nothing to do with Cinder. As it seems she was always that hostile and I have no idea why Garan married her. That woman is just horrible and I hope she never meets Queen Levana! I don’t even want to think about what would happen if those two would join forces. *shudders*

3

Cinder & Prince Kai:

”I shouldn’t be telling you all this anyway. It isn’t your problem to worry about. It’s just … you’re easy to talk to.”
She shuffled her feet. “It is kind of my problem. I mean, we all have to live here.
“You could move to Europe.”
“You know, I’ve actually been considering that lately.”
Kai laughed again, the warmth returning to the sound. “If that’s not a vote of confidence, I don’t know what is.”

I’m totally on board of this ship! Those two were soo cute together and I loved their easy banter. ❤ Poor Prince Kai though! I have no idea how Cinder managed not to give into his advances. I mean there’s this amazing Prince who is determined to take her to the ball with him and she crushes his hopes again and again! WTH?? You might be a cyborg Cinder but I don’t think Prince Kai would have loved you any less if you would have told him the truth about yourself. I think if anything he might have loved you even more. If she would have just told him on her own terms. The way it was revealed was just too much for Kai and I can understand him, really. His words at the end of the book killed me but I get why he was so disappointed. There were plenty of opportunities to come clean with him, but Cinder never told him. =( Also I think that his last words were meant in the sense of it hurts him more to look at her than at Levana because he felt betrayed by her and at least Levana put her cards on the table. I’m really worried about him now because who knows what he might agree to now that Cinder is out of the picture. >_< He’s strong willed but the longer he stays in Queen Levana’s presence the harder it will get to resist her and I just don’t want him to give up on himself!! ARGH!!! I’m so afraid of what will happen to him in those next few books!

”It’s gone now,” she said. “I’m fine.”
“You’re not fine,” said Kai. “What causes it? What can we do to make it stop?”

Kai peeled his eyes away, finding some place of resignation off in the glistening garden. “You’re even more painful to look at than she is.”
Cinder’s heart shrivelled inside her until she was sure it would stop beating altogether.

Queen Levana & Prince Kai:

She was still battling Kai across the table, her eyes cold and calculating, and he unable to look away. “I have learned something valuable about you tonight, young prince. I hope you have learned something about me, as well.”
“That you prefer to rule through fear rather than justice? So sorry, Your Majesty, I’m afraid I already knew that about you.”
“No, indeed. I hope you noticed that I am capable of choosing my battles.” Her lips curved, her beauty returning full force. “If that’s what it takes to win the war.”

Those two were like cat and mouse! Unfortunately Kai was the mouse in this scenario and even though he held his own I’m afraid that Queen Levana might be able to persuade him to marry her. It’s not just her glamour but also the cure she offers. He always said that he only wants what’s best for his people and if it saves them he might even consider making a deal with the devil. =( Plus now that Dr. Erland vanished with Cinder he has no one that would continue his research for an antidote. To him it might look like there’s only one option left and I DON’T WANT HIM TO CHOOSE THAT FREAKIN OPTION! GOSH DARN IT!!! *dies*

4

I LOVED this!!! “Cinder” read like a unique mixture of “Cinderella” featuring “Star Wars” and even though I didn’t know it when I started to read the book this was exactly what I needed! XD Give me more of this and I might overcome my growing aversion to ordinary fairy tales. *lol* Maybe one day my kid will read those books too! 😉 This said: I can’t wait to continue with “Scarlet”!!!
Happy reading and enjoy!

Allgemein, F - J, H, Reviews

Review: Heartless (Marissa Meyer)

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Rating: 3 Pfoten

”It had been a hazy, beautiful dream, and in it there had been a hazy, beautiful boy. He was dressed all in black and standing in an orchard of lemon trees, and she had the distinct sensation that he had something that belonged to her. She didn’t know what it was, only that she wanted it back, but every time she took a step towards him he receded further and further away.”

And so it begins! The transformation of Lady Catherine Pinkerton of Turtle Rock Cove into the Queen of Hearts! When I started to read the book I was really surprised how nice and relatable she was and even halfway through “Heartless” I still kept wondering how she’d ever be able to turn into the Queen of Hearts.

Well, she obviously was able to, but I wasn’t really happy with the transformation. Which is the reason I’m very conflicted about this book. *lol* On the one hand it had two of the best character introduction scenes I’ve ever read and I’m still in awe of the atmosphere Marissa Meyer created, but on the other hand the ending and everything that happened over those last 50 pages felt more than just a little rushed.

„But the rose felt like a whispered message, a hushed glance across a crowded room. Something precious and not to be shared.“

I mean the love story is building up and even though it’s still kinda insta-lovey I decided that this time around it’s okay for me. After all, the entire book is a standalone and there’s only so much you can pack into a single book. And seriously if you ever meet Jest, you’ll fall head over heels for him too. ;-P I mean how could you not? He’s cute and charming, intriguing and bold, but also shy and very handsome. I swear his golden eyes and black curls immediately caused me to think of another awesome character I hold close to my heart and yes I was a goner the instant he entered the scene!

”A laugh like that is richer than gold to a man in my position. I’ll make it my life’s work to hear the sound again. Every day, if it pleases you. No – twice a day, and at least once before breakfast. A royal joker must set the highest of expectations.”

As for the other characters: I really liked Raven (Haha no surprise there!!!) and I thought Catherine and Mary Ann were really sweet! Their wish to open a bakery resonated with me (Yes, I love to bake too. Especially cupcakes and huge cakes) and I swear I got hungry whenever I picked up the book. Their thoughts about the perfect macarons and pies and whatever else they wanted to bake had me drooling all over the place and if you’ve a sweet tooth like me you can actually consider this to be a trigger warning. *LOL* I bet I gained a few pounds just reading this book. XD

Anyway, enough of sweets or I’ll have to pillage my “chocolate drawer” again! ;-P Let’s continue to talk about the other characters of this book. Like for instance the King of Hearts! Boy was he a little, giggly and incompetent man! I mean nothing wrong with being funny, but the way he acted he seemed to be the only true Fool in the game. >_<

”I can’t compete with a king, and I won’t compete with the man who’s given me employment, who’s offered me a place in his court when he had no need to. I don’t mean to make your choice more difficult than it already is. He’s a good man. I believe he would do his best to be a good husband.”

I understand why Jest didn’t want to go behind his back but I’m also convinced that Cath should have been honest with the King. If she would have been honest and forthright right from the beginning, nothing bad would have happened. Yes, it’s hard to refuse a king but it’s even harder to live with a lie. I know her parents made it exceptionally difficult to stay true to herself and I felt this on a spiritual level, but when it comes to matters of the heart there always comes a moment when you have to draw the line. If you ask me, Cath missed that point and that’s why things had to end the way they did. *sighs*

”I have a personal rule about not entering into business with spineless creatures. No snakes. No slippery eels. And worst of all, no fickle women. Play coy all you like, Lady Pinkerton. Cling to your belief in your own innocence. You know as well as I that you’re going to break at least one heart before this is over, and I want nothing more to do with you.”

Those were harsh words, but I think Lady Catherine had to hear them. Oh Hatta! I loved him so much! I know some of you will say: ”WHAT?!” now and I don’t blame you for it. He was more than just unfriendly to Cath throughout the entire book and there were moments even I wondered why he was so mean, but then at the end it all made sense.

All this hostility towards Lady Pinkerton, the loyalty he felt for Jest! It was so sad to watch the story unfold and to know that Hatta eventually would become mad. The way it finally happened broke my heart though. I definitely didn’t expect it to work out like that!! >_<

”She is a rose, Jest. Lovely on the eyes, yes, but such thorns are not to be ignored. She belongs in a King’s garden, not yours.”

 
Also those three sisters of the well were so damn creepy! *lol* Am I the only one that instantly thought of Samara from “The Ring”?! Haha!
I swear Lacie, Tillie and Elsie were so damn scary!!! (Despite their rather harmless sounding names. XD)

So yeah, all told I really enjoyed the book, but the ending… Well, let’s just say I’m not happy with it. All this build up and then things were resolved so fast and I was blinking at the page thinking: WTH?! Are you kidding me? This is how it all goes down?! This is it?!

I really wish I could give “Heartless” four stars. Jest and Hatta would deserve it, but those last 50 pages ruined it so much that I can’t give it more than 3 stars. It just wouldn’t feel right to give it four. *sighs* Still, I enjoyed the book and I can recommend it, just don’t expect all too much when it comes to the final reason and revelation! I guess then you should be safe! 😉