I found this book through a friendly algorithm (thank you, Goodreads recommendations) and was the first to check out the pristine new paperback from my local library. To be fair, it probably wasn’t a difficult pick for the little app – let’s do a little run down here, shall we?
√ YA fiction
√ Sci fi/Futuristic fantasy
√ Retelling of a classic fairytale
√ Dystopian future
Yeppers, this book promised to tick a lot of my boxes! And it didn’t disappoint. It’s not the mind-blowing literature of The Night Circus or The Bone Clocks – but then again, it’s not trying to be. Very loosely based on the Cinderella fairytale, Cinder is set in a futuristic world, which has been rebuilt after the ravages of WW4, and where a separate group of humans have evolved from colonies on the moon.
There are several sources of tension in this strange new world; firstly, Cinder is a cyborg. Having been in an accident when she was younger, surgery saved her life but ruined her social standing, as in this world, people with machine parts are considered less than human, and can be legally ‘owned’ by ‘real’ humans (just like androids). Then there’s a whole plague situation, and huge political tension (on the verge of becoming war) between Earth Humans and Lunars.
This was a fun first instalment, and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the series. Cinderella can be a little bit insipid, sometimes, and I enjoyed the socio-political themes in this version – philosophical and practical questions about human rights and what constitutes them, for example. Cinder is a bit more badass than a lot of versions of her namesake, too – none of this moping around and waiting to be saved nonsense! The ‘glass slipper on the stair’ moment is nicely flipped, too – although you’ll have to read it to find out how!