Title: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Acquired Via: Around the World ARC Tours
Release Date: February 4, 2014
Rapunzel’s tower is a satellite. She can’t let down her hair—or her guard.
In this third book in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles series, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.
Their best hope lies with Cress, who has been trapped on a satellite since childhood with only her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker—unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.
When a daring rescue goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing stop her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only ones who can.
Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2)
Cress by Marissa Meyer is the third installment in the Lunar Chronicles, Meyer's popular quadrilogy that takes beloved fairy tales and drops them into her imaginative sci-fi heavy dystopian world. The main heroine of the series is Linh Cinder, the cyborg Cinderella who first appeared in Cinder, which happens to be one of my all-time favorite YA novels. I found Scarlet, the sequel that introduces Little Red Riding Hood, to be hugely underwhelming. Due to this, I was filled with both excitement and hesitation when it came to Cress. Luckily for me, Cress was everything I love about reading, and it more than made up for my disappointment with Scarlet. You will be safe reading below as my review will be mostly spoiler free. (If there are any, I promise that they are purely accidental.)
Each installation in the series has focused on a different fairy tale femme, with Cress being the reimagined Rapunzel. She had a little bit of time on the page in Scarlet, and she was shown to be halfway crazy (in a quirky way) young lady who has been locked away in a satellite by one of Queen Levana's thaumaturges. However, her actual quasi-insanity that was showcased in Scarlet was very dialed down in Cress. Whenever Cress found herself to be in a stressful situation, she would pretend to be another person (a great actress, explorer, etc.) as a coping mechanism. It seems a little odd, but it did not merit the circular finger-motion next one's temple. I would have liked to see a little more of the silliness, but the vulnerability and naivete it portrayed instead was not a bad touch.
Cress' interactions with the characters from the first two books managed to continue the story, as well as give readers the opportunity to get to know her. There are scenes without Cress, but I'm trying to avoid too many spoilers. Thaumaturge Sybil Mira has been Cress' guardian for many years - ever since her hacking abilities were discovered - and keeps her locked away to serve Queen Levana's needs. She plays a fairly important role in this book, especially toward the end. Cress is infatuated with Carswell Thorne, who she learned about while watching the Earth's video feeds. She then researches (stalks) him to find out what makes him tick. Watching her feelings as she gets to know him and lose a little of her worldly innocence said so much about her as a character. It's hard to pull off a female who is weak and strong at the same time, but Cress really is that.
There is a lot that I would like to say about the books and the developments in Cress, but I don't want to ruin anything in the series for people reading this. (If you want to discuss the book (or the first two) on Twitter, I'm always happy to oblige.) Cress was going to be a birthday present to myself, but I'm very glad that I read it now instead of waiting. It's completely restored my faith in where Meyer is taking the Lunar Chronicles, and I cannot wait for Winter. If you are a fan of fairy tales or science fiction and have not read the books in this series, you are doing yourself an injustice and should rectify matters soon. You won't regret it.
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Fishpond
To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received an advance copy of the book briefly for reviewing purposes through Around the World ARC Tours in exchange for an honest review. The book was likely provided to the tour by the publisher or author, which has in no way affected the outcome of my review. All opinions expressed are rambling, honest, and completely my own.