Published: February 5th, 2013 by Feiwel and Friends
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.
When I reread and reviewed Cinder, everyone talked about how they definitely loved Cinder, but Scarlet was even better - both the book and the character. At the time, I didn't see how. I loved Cinder, and I loved how easily I could connect to her. I didn't think it could get better for me. As it turns out, I was right.
Scarlet was definitely great. I loved that her mission was centered on saving her grandmother, I loved her fierceness and her wit. But I just didn't connect to her the way I did for Cinder. I didn't feel as much and as intensely for her as I did for Cinder. I liked Wolf and Scarlet well enough, just not in the way I did with Kai and Cinder.
It was really cool to see a different part in the world that The Lunar Chronicles are set in. Marissa Meyer definitely knows how to world build. It all felt so very natural, and I mean, it was Paris in Meyer form, so I mean . . . What's not to love?
I loved the development in the Lunar plotline. It's starting to get a little creepier, which I always love. That stuff with Wolf and the pack? Definitely a plot twist I didn't really see coming. But what I enjoyed most were scenes between Thorne and Cinder. I love Thorne's personality and how different he is from a lot of heroes. Still arrogant and pretty, of course, but different in many other ways. I can't wait to dive into Cress and read more his humor.
Overall: I still really enjoyed Scarlet. The world Marissa Meyer has created is so easy to fall in love with, and the stakes are starting to get even higher. I'm just still very attached to Cinder, and this one didn't make me as emotional. 4 stars.
Published: December 18th, 2012 by Disney-Hyperion
When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.
Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.
When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.
When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.
I've heard from multiple people that TDM is one of their favorite series. And as Alexandra Bracken wrote Passenger, which sounds completely incredible and has received rave reviews so far, I came into this with high expectations. And honestly, I was . . . underwhelmed. I enjoyed it, sure, but I was expecting so much more. Even now that I've finished, I still don't properly understand the powers of every color. The backstory and world-building were pretty weak for me. Why do all the kids have one of like, five abilities? Who even came up with this colors system? HOW ON EARTH DOES THE ENTIRE WORLD JUST THINK THEY'RE IN A REHABILITATION CAMP? Okay, sure, people only see what they want to believe. But you can't tell me that the majority of the US isn't concerned about their kids - who they never get to see or hear from - just because the economy is broken. It just wasn't believable enough for me.
And I never really felt the danger. Never really connected to Ruby. Thought her and Liam were cute, but was never so invested in them that my heart hurt. (Blue and Gansey, anyone?) Knew Clancy was a creep from the start. I guess I just think this all could been a lot more interesting. At times, it felt a bit like a contemporary playing at something more.
I found it really interesting, though, the way that her biggest strength is that she can erase herself from someone's memory. I totally saw that ending with Liam coming, especially after his "I will never forget you. Never, never, never." But that doesn't mean it left me apathetic. I definitely got a little emotional there and had to pause my life for a few minutes and go "DID THAT REALLY JUST HAPPEN?"
Overall: I enjoyed the story well enough and wanted to see where it was going. The relationship between Chubs, Liam, and Suzame (and eventually Ruby) was fun. I was just expecting a lot more. 3 stars.